June 2011 Newsletter
Dog Meat & Fur Trade
by Gary Edwards
The trade in dog meat is often thought to be something which is unique to Countries such as South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines. However, this trade is spread across various Countries, even within Eastern Europe, and even Canada currently imports dog fur, to be used as trims on clothing and other accessories.. I do not consider myself just another 'Westerner' who interferes in the cultural aspects of another Country, and I would never try to impose my personal beliefs onto any person. There are individuals like myself, who share a passion for all animals, and there are those who do not have such an affinity. However, putting aside my own personal beliefs that all life is sentient, the dog meat trade is by far, the cruelest of all meat production within the civilised World today. For centuries, throughout all civilisations, dogs have always been known to be companion animals, from the dawn of mankind who domesticated wolves, to our present day, as faithful friends and companion pets. Even in Asian Countries, dogs are considered pets foremost, and have been for generations. The vast majority of people throughout the World that we live in today, consider eating dog meat as a repulsive act. The minority who do persist in eating dog meat, in Countries such as the Philippines and Taiwan, where eating dog meat is now illegal, to China and Korea, where this trade is legal, often argue that the Western World eats pigs, cows, sheep, horse, chickens etc, and that this is comparable to eating any kind of meat. Animals are meat, whatever the species, therefore they see no difference between the slaughter of a dog, or a cow.
My argument and desire to eradicate this trade in dog meat, and fur, is not justified by my personal beliefs, as I do not eat meat of any kind. My desire to eradicate this trade is based purely on the fact that these animals are companions, pets, and have faithfully served mankind since we first domesticated gray wolves around 15,000 years ago and some indications based on fossil records, show that this date could be as early as 30,000 BC. There is also evidence to suggest that domestication first began in Eastern Asia itself. Therefore, the cultural argument for the trade in dog meat is not something which has been a continuous practice. Many 1000's of years prior to this trade increasing within the past few centuries, the vast majority of civilisations have always considered dogs to be pets and companions, for hunting, or work related purposes.
Putting aside the fact that dogs offer humanity unrivalled loyalty, affection, and companionship, my argument has always been based upon this one point....Dogs are not cattle, nor food, and never will be. They are sentient indivuals, who have remained close to man, and walk by the feet of mankind, and will continue to do so, until mankind itself ceases to exist.
Dogs that are used for the meat trade can often be stolen pets, strays, or bred soley for the purpose of this trade. They all share one thing...they suffer unimaginable cruelty. Crammed into cages, barely able to move or breath, they often die from heat exhaustion, and often suffer broken bones during transport to the slaughterhouses. The ones that remain suffer beatings, scaldings, which is thought to terrify the dogs into producing more adrenaline, therefore making the meat taste better, and there is often an associated belief, that eating dog meat results in an increase in virility amongst men.
However, any person, even those who do not share my affinity with animals in general, cannot ignore the simple fact that the 1000's of dogs slaughtered every week, suffer cruelty on an unimaginable scale, and to see a dog wagging its tail, moments before being bashed over the head, having its throat cut, or being stabbed in the groin to be bled out, is truly one of the worst sights and sounds that can ever be heard and witnessed. Even as they approach death itself, many dogs wag their tails, gazing from the cages, as if to ask the question...why?
The Animal Kingdom Foundation, a charity which rescues slaughterbound dogs, has the largest rescue and rehabilitation centre in the Philippines, and currently around 600 dogs live in safety, after having been intercepted by police and AKF workers, to be taken out of the human food chain. This not only protects the animals themselves, but also it protects the general population from the threat of rabies, which is quite prevalent in this region. Many people who eat dog meat are at serious risk of becoming infected by the rabies virus, and once the virus reaches the brain, death is inevitable and excruciatingly painful.
In todays society, not just in the Western World, but in many Asian Countries, the dog meat trade is diminishing, and always remember that it is only a minority who do eat dog meat. Often, I have been told that Asian regions slaughter dogs for meat and fur on a massive scale, but in comparison to the overall populations, the percentage is small as to the amount of persons involved in eating this meat. Therefore I would never personally judge any Nation, be in Canada's importing of dog fur or seal slaughter, Spain's bull-fighting, to Japan's whaling industry. We are all guilty of enslaving all manner of animals whatever our nationality, and Worldwide, many animals suffer cruelty in all its forms. To judge a single nation based on our own cultural beliefs is interference, but as a collective of humans throughout the entire World itself, I believe there comes a time when the human species must become compassionate towards all forms of life, and draw a line on what is food, and what is not. Dogs are not food, nor cattle, and never will be, and as we consider ourselves to be the superior species, these words spring to mind...'The Human Race'...'The Human Disg-race'....Gary Edwards 2011.
Please visit Gary's Website: http://dogrescuefareast.webs.com/
HAPPY ENDING FOR LETEA HORSES OF ROMANIA
by Dawn Groth
About 3600 feral horses live in the Danube Delta, 2000 in the Letea nature reserve, a national heritage attested by UNESCO; they belong to the park and they are “supposed” to be protected.
Although feral horses have existed for hundreds of years in the region, their number greatly increased after the collective farms were closed down in 1990 and the horses belonging to them being freed, became wild again and took control of their new territory.
In this area food for these horses is scarce, which forces them to graze on the flora and tree barks of an environmentally protected area. This however, is not sufficient food for them, and during the harsh Romanian winters, many die of starvation. In February 2011 Four Paws (Vier Pfoten) delivered 105 tons of fodder in an effort to prevent some 2500 of these horses from being culled. For a while, the local authorites, who see the horses as a threat to the protected marshlands, put their plans on hold.
However, to the shock of the Organization, to Romanian and international animal advocates, the Romanian public witnessed a sudden “decision” to catch and slaughter Europe’s last remaining wild horses, which took everyone by surprise.
Outraged, NGO’s and Romanian citizens banned together to stop this horrific turn of events. The people mobilized quickly. Petitions were started, media contacted and news traveled swiftly. Disgusted by the lack of response from the Tulcea government authorites, Romanian celebrity Oana Pellea penned a letter to the “political class of Romania”, a brief quote from this . . . .
“What balanced, unemotional text could create the kind of impact needed to stop this crime? What text should be penned to provoke an end to these atrocities? A message, a letter, a prayer, a scream perhaps? Would any of these stop this mindless, absurd and frenzied cruelty? For three days, thousands of people have written to all possible mediatic outposts: newspapers, TV, etc.. They have appealed for an end to the massacre at Letea, in which dozens of horses are to be slaughtered. And NOTHING!”
In spite of all this action and attention, on May 20, 2011 the horses were loaded onto the truck headed for the slaughterhouse. The people mobilized quickly again.
After demonstrating and marching in front of the Romanian Senate, in Victoriei Square, in Bucharest, on the evening of that same Friday, 40 out of the 200 or so volunteers, driving 15-17 cars, left Bucharest and followed the truck, They managed to stop the truck with the help of police in a village just northeast of Bucharest. After much concerted effort and 5 hours later, the horses were released and they managed to find an enclosed area of 4000 square meters of farmland, unused, which the owner was willing to lend to the horses. As they were let out of the truck, the horses were found to be in dire condition. A white mare which had fallen on the floor in exhaustion was found dead. Left without her mother for so many long hours, her weakened foal lived only a few days, despite much effort to save her. In all, 3 horses were lost.
Four Paws (Vier Pfoten of Romania) took custody of all the horses, with the approval of the prefect of Braila county, Dumitru Popa. Vier Pfoten writes. . . .
We wish to thank the Sanitary Veterinary and Food Safety Authority from Braila for its swift mobilization and total involvement in the horses’ rescue operation. In addition, the foundation’s representatives would like to emphasize the vital importance of the Police’s professionalism (both local Ianca town and county of Braila) in saving the horses from being massacred.
Without the support of the NGO’s , the hundreds of animal lovers who gathered at the spot with food and medicine, of the milions who supported our cause, without the media and the Facebook community, such a happy ending (given the circumstances) wouldn’t have been possible. Thanks to all these people, the Letea horses are alive and can safely return back into the wild at the earliest.
Update May 25, 2011
Letea Horses will now be protected for at least 10 years, according to a protocol which will be signed between the organization Vier Pfoten and several public authorities, including Health Department and The Forestry Department of Veterinary Tulcea. According to Kuki Barbuceanu, project coordinator within FOUR PAWS, so the governor of the Danube Delta, and the prefect of Tulcea and gave their consent for the project to protect the animals.
And from this writer's perspective : this story goes to prove, that your Actions DO COUNT! They DO Make a Difference!
To stay updated on this story and any petitions that need to be signed please go to this link:
Dawn Groth / WEEAC
Success! Howley Feral Cats Safe From Gas Chamber
by Care2 Causes & News
If officials in Howley, Newfoundland had their way, the town's feral cats would all have been gassed and buried, but that was before animal welfare advocates stepped in and showed them a better way.
For years, the town suffered from a feral cat problem. The situation frustrated the mayor and city council so much that they proposed killing all the cats via gas chamber. By then, though, S.C.A.P.A. had already trapped, spayed or neutered, and then released many of the cats to live out the rest of their lives without contributing to the growing cat population, but the town leaders were determined to get rid of the cats immediately.
That's when animal lovers in Howley jumped to the cats' defense. Johanna Tito created a petition on Care2 to help save the cats. The petition was online for only a few weeks, but over six hundred people from around the world stood up for Howley's feral cats. Johanna posted it to the Howley Facebook page, making sure that the council members and the mayor could see it.
In the end, the town's officials saw the light, and the mayor assured the community that the cats would not be gassed and that the problem seemed to be clearing up on its own. Johanna and the other animal lovers in Howley wanted to thank all of the Care2 members who helped make this success happen.
"A new article appeared in the Western Star on May 12 in which the Mayor was quoted as saying that it is 'important for the community to find as humane a solution as possible' and that he 'does not advocate killing animals in any way.' He had never said anything like this before and I attribute this change of heart directly to the pressure put on the mayor and town council by the Care2 petition."
The cats of Howley, Newfoundland, are safe thanks to hundreds of caring and compassionate Care2 members! On their behalf, thank you for making a difference in their lives!
140 Starving Dogs Need Help!
A rural shelter in Trikala, Greece.
There are 140 Animals at the Trikala Shelter in Greece, which are literally Starving to Death. They're in Dire Need of Food Donations, Medical Supplies, or Funding! There are Only 5 Rescuers trying to care for 140 Dogs at this Shelter! These women are literally going to Restaurants in the area, Begging for Leftover Food for these Animals! I've created this page raise awareness of this situation! There are several people helping with this Rescue Effort, including Viktor Larkhill who runs, "Let's Adopt Global".
by Pia Berrend
To find out how YOU can help. . . . . Please Click Here
Since our last Newsletter, the following areas have joined us in our Campaign for the Animals.
- Chubut, Argentina
- Sydney, Australia
- Revelstoke BC, Canada
- Wanganui, New Zealand
- Barcelona, Spain
And here in the United States...
- San Francisco, California
- Aurora, Illinois
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The Junior Advocates group has also brought on board.
- Tristan Emans - Columbus, Ohio
- Ornella Lole Benesperi - Chubut, Argentina.
adding to the original 2:
- Jordan Turner
- Alex Zuehlke
With summer on it's way and the school year ending. The Youth Program will not get into full swing until Fall 2011/2012 school year begins. At which point, it is our hope to take the campaign a step further. And actually go to the schools with a presentation, to try and educate the young people on the plight of animals in our world today. To show them, that they need our compassion and our help.
- Berlin, Germany now has Anca Graterol entertaining for the day.
- The store is now fully loaded. Lots of fun items to show your support and help raise awareness, from T-Shirts, Hats, Buttons, Tote Bags and even Iphone Covers.
All items can be customized with your name.
WEEAC Online Store
Many new Pages have been implemented to the website:
- Vegetarian Debate
- Animals Deserve Better
- Animal Rights by Tom Regan
- Link to WEEAC Deutschland (Germany)
- Link to WEEAC Ecuador
And Pages Dedicated per Language, starting with. . . .
Always check the Event Area page for a location near you. . . .
Please do Join us in our Worldwide Event....
Rally & Candlelight Vigil
October 8, 2011
4:00pm - 8:00pm
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