Puppy importer brings in ‘defective’ animals, then leaves them at vet’s to be killed, says rescuer

‘Defective’ merchandise: blind Jack Russell pups abandoned at vet’s to be killed. / Photo: Achaic Society for the Care of Animals

An individual who imports puppies—perhaps from Hungary where there are many high-volume dog breeders—recently took two Jack Russell terriers to a vet in western Greece to have them euthanized because they were blind, according to a local rescue group.

president Anastasia Aravantinou said she is now fostering the two pups until they find adopters.

Aravantinou explained more about the puppies and the circumstances of their abandonment in the following interview with Animal Issues Reporter (AIR). Read the rest of this entry »

Rescued Jack Russell pups don’t know they’re blind: Watch them play

Blind Jack Russell pups were dumped at vet’s to be euthanized.
Photo: Achaic Society for the Care of Animals

Although Anastasia Aravantinou works full-time in her job as Western Greece district manager for , she and other volunteers for manage to squeeze enough spare moments out of their busy lives to rescue, foster, and re-home some 200 animals per year from the teeming streets and surrounding rural areas of the port city of Patras, on the shores of the Ionian Sea.

In a visit to the group’s Facebook page, Animal Issues Reporter discovered Aravantinou’s impassioned account of ACSA’s recent rescue of two Jack Russell terrier puppies.

ACSA frequently fosters puppies, but there’s something just a little different about these two…

By Anastasia Aravantinou, Achaic Society for the Care of Animals (Opinion)

So, how did we end up with two blind Jack Russell puppies? Piou was the first one we rescued. He was abandoned at a veterinarian’s office to be put to sleep because he couldn’t see. Read the rest of this entry »

Want to defeat an animal protection law? Tea Party might help

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) found that in some of Missouri’s puppy mills–the ‘Dirty Dozen– violations included ‘sick or dying puppies who had not been treated by a veterinarian; dogs found shivering in temperatures as low as 9 degrees; and dogs so emaciated that their bones were visible through their skin.’ – The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) / Photo: HSUS

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

If you’re trying to kill or modify a proposed animal welfare law—for example one that regulates high-volume commercial breeders or “puppy mills”—you might want to enlist the assistance of the , according to the (MFB).

“The Missouri Tea Party picked up that Prop B [the ] was important,” said MFB’s director of marketing and commodities Kelly Smith, “and that they should be opposing it. They were a big help in doing that.”

Smith laid out a detailed strategy including other ways to fight animal welfare groups in his presentation “made to the in 2011. Read the rest of this entry »

Lobbyists to ‘pay the price’ for helping animal welfare groups in Missouri

Missouri demonstrators on the issue of Prop B, the “Puppy Mill Cruelty Prevention Act,” passed by voters but then replaced by Gov. Jay Nixon with a less stringent law / Photo: Missouri Farm Bureau and TruffleMedia

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

In this year’s election season, lobbyist firms who helped in the push for a law to regulate dog breeding in Missouri—condemned by animal protection groups as the “puppy mill capital of America”—might get punished.

“Those guys will be paying the price for doing that,” said Kelly Smith of the (MFB). “There are several of those guys [lobbyists] that run rural state rep and state senate campaigns that will not be doing that in the future.” Read the rest of this entry »

‘Mutts’ comic strip characters helped pass a law to regulate dog breeders

One of neglected dogs removed from a Missouri breeder by authorities and The Humane Society of the United States / Photo: HSUS video

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

Some of the most powerful opponents of commercial dog breeders—nemeses fierce enough to help pass a law that would have mandated welfare standards for dogs used in “puppy mills”—those enemies apparently were, well… imaginary, according to the .

Creator Patrick McDonnell employed his imagination, in the form of characters Earl, Woofie and friends in his popular to speak up for Missouri’s Prop B, the Read the rest of this entry »

‘These guys are good—we don’t like them, but they are good at what they do’: farm bureau about Humane Society

Animal welfare groups say Missouri’s large-scale commercial breeders often severely neglect the tens of thousands of dogs used to create about a million puppies per year to be sold in pet stores / Photo: HSUS video (not necessarily in Missouri)

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

“The emotion of the puppy, man’s best friend. How do you not want to protect these little innocent puppies?” asked Kelly Smith in a speech to commercial dog breeders and other farmed animal producers. “That was very hard. And that was something that the rest of animal agriculture had to learn and deal with. It was very, very hard to do.”

The protection to which Smith referred might have been provided by a Missouri law, Prop B, the ,” proposed in 2010 by and other animal welfare groups, who said it would improve the lives of the tens of thousands of dogs—many severely neglected and ill—who are used to create about a million puppies annually in the state’s 1,000-plus commercial breeding establishments.

But the state’s dog breeders and farmers believed it was a law against which they needed to protect themselves, said Smith, the farm bureau’s marketing and commodities director. Read the rest of this entry »

Law would have required better care for dogs than for children, says farm bureau

Animal protection groups say large-scale commercial breeders neglect and abuse dogs / Photo: The Humane Society of the United States video (photo not necessarily from Missouri)

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

While in the past few years the has seized 5,500 dogs from neglectful commercial breeders, a representative of the state’s farm bureau said that not only is more regulation unnecessary, but that a 2010 law proposed to improve conditions for the animals would have set an anti-farming precedent and in some ways would have required that breeders take better care of dogs than of children. Read the rest of this entry »

More than 5,500 dogs seized from Missouri breeders since start of ‘Operation Bark Alert’

Raid on a commercial dog breeder (not necessarily in Missouri) / Photo: HSUS video

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

The fact that the has confiscated thousands of dogs from neglectful commercial dog breeders in the past few years is proof that its oversight of the “highly regulated industry” is working, said a representative of the state’s farm bureau.

Kelly Smith, Marketing and Commodities Director of the , told attendees at last year’s Animal Agriculture Alliance Summit that animal activists who came to the state in 2010 to push for a law to control “puppy mills,” or large-scale commercial breeders, deliberately did not mention what he described as an already-existing successful system to ensure animal welfare.

According to the Missouri Department of Agriculture’s website, since the launch of in 2009, “more than 5,500 dogs have been rescued in Missouri [from unlicensed dog breeders].” Read the rest of this entry »

Missouri breeds 30% of puppies sold in U.S. pet stores, says farm bureau

Animal welfare groups allege that dogs are neglected and abused by Missouri’s large-scale commercial dog breeders / Photo: Yes on Prop B

By Katerina Lorenzatos Makris

“Puppy mill capital of America,” is what (HSUS) calls Missouri.

It was on that battleground last year that mega-group HSUS along with other animal welfare organizations lost their war to establish a law that they say would have improved the lives of the tens of thousands of dogs used to produce about a million puppies annually in the state’s 1,000-plus commercial breeding establishments.

Prop B, the , was actually passed by 51.6 percent of Missouri voters. However, to the satisfaction of dog breeding and farming lobbies and the outrage of animal activists, Gov. Jay Nixon overturned and replaced it with a different law that many call a severely gutted version of the one that voters had approved. Read the rest of this entry »

‘How I became first an animal lover and second a politician’ – U.S. Congressman Sam Farr

U.S. Congressman Sam Farr in action on the floor of Congress / Photo: Congressman Sam Farr

While covering conference recently, Animal Issues Reporter.org’s correspondent Catherine Cowan heard an impassioned speech by , a Democrat from California. TAFA and Rep. Farr’s staff members kindly provided the following transcript.

Speech at TAFA conference by Rep. Sam Farr:

You’ve asked a politician to say a few words tonight to a group of prominent animal lovers.

I thought it would be interesting to relate how I became first an animal lover and second a politician. Read the rest of this entry »


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