Category Archives: Animal Welfare

Issues concerning the treatment of animals, and efforts via reforms and legislation to improve it.

BLM Rounding Up 1,500 Horses in Oregon: What You Can Do

horses helicopter

The Bureau of Land Management, which is supposed to protect wild horses, sent nearly 1,800 of them to certain death in Colorado between 2009 and 2012.

The U.S. Office of the Inspector General issued a scathing report, the according to Denver Post coverage last week. The report said the bureau “failed to follow its own policy of limiting horse sales and ensuring that the horses sold went to good homes and were not slaughtered.” (Here’s the full report.)

That hasn’t stopped the bureau’s plan to descend early next month on Beatys Butte Herd Management Area in southern Oregon, where 1,500 wild horses live peacefully on some 400,000 acres of public land. Using helicopters, it will drive them out.

Such roundups appear to be legal, based on earlier Inspector General reports, which mention how difficult a job it is to carry out.

There are other ways.

Although BLM culls horses to “maintain rangeland health,” ranchers in southern Oregon acknowledge it’s to ensure there’s enough land for their cattle. As one rancher from Kiehly Brothers Ranch put it, “It’s starting to hurt the resource out there…. It’s just too many horses out there for the resource.”

Let’s tell BLM and the Department of the Interior, which oversees it, that that’s no reason to send 1,500 wild horses to their deaths. If horse populations need to be controlled, the fertility control vaccine PZP is a far more humane and more sustainable option.

Leave a message on BLM’s web site and for Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, the former CEO of REI who oversees BLM:

Call 202-208-3100, email and/or use an online feedback form.

Here’s a sample, but please tailor for yourself:

Dear Secty. Sally Jewell,
I’m writing from Seattle, where we’re watching closely what you and BLM do in Oregon next month with the horses at Beatys Butte.
You know that a fertility vaccine is a more humane, more sustainable option than what BLM has planned — and that such action will only call more attention to a program that’s been badly mismanaged and was embarrassed by an OIG report last week regarding illegal behavior in Colorado.
Please take the time to save these wild horses and to get this program on track.
I know you’re busy, but it’s time now.
Thank you,

Seattle benefit for Help Animals India

Help Animals India is having its first-ever Seattle benefit for India’s animals.

Date: October 17, 2015
Time: 5 pm
Cost: $15 (tickets available here)
Location: Culture Shakti Dance, Seattle

help animals india

Despite some of the best animal protection laws in the world and a renowned heritage of reverence for life, modern India is a country where millions of animals suffer severe neglect or abuse.

Overpopulation, poverty, pollution, superstition, apathy and ignorance all contribute to their plight. In a country where human misery and impoverishment remain high, the welfare of destitute animals is a low priority.

Help Animals India is a Seattle-based non-profit dedicated to improving the welfare of animals in India by raising money for dedicated Indian animal protection groups and advising them on how to improve their capacity to help the animals.

Join them for a fun evening of Indian Dance Performance by the Dancers of Culture Shakti, Indian and World Vibes Music by Dj Seanuman, Mystic Kombucha on Tap, and a Catered Silent Auction with Items from local businesses.

Delicious Food Provided by Chaco Canyon, The Shop Agora, & Cupcake Royale.

Get your tickets today!

ALL proceeds go the benefit Help Animals India

Can’t make the event? Please consider donating - any amount helps!

You can find out more about Help Animals India on their website  or on their Facebook page.

Weekend activism

Wondering how you can help animals this weekend? Wonder no more. This weekend in jam-packed with amazing opportunities to help animals.

October 2nd (today)

Today is World Day for Farmed Animals. It’s a time to fast, learn, and educate others on the plight of the 10 billion animals this country eats every year.

This afternoon is the March on UW. At 2 pm, at The University of Washington’s Red Square, hundreds of animal rights activists will march against the university’s plans to build a new animal testing lab. Please join us!

The April March on UW

This evening is the circus demo in Everett. Help us educate circus-goers that animals do not belong in the circus.


October 3rd (tomorrow)

Three more circus shows in Everett means we’ll have three more demos. Please join us from 10-11:30 am, from 3-3:30 pm, from 5:30-7 pm, or all of the times!

The Global March for Elephants, Rhinos, and Lions is happening from 1-2:30 pm tomorrow in downtown Seattle. The march starts at Westlake Center and is part of a worldwide effort to save wild animals from poaching.


October 4th (Sunday)

Another circus demo is Everett begins at 11:30 am. Please join us and let Ringling Bros. know that we won’t stand for animal abuse.

Help make the last circus demo of the year the biggest one ever. We know Ringling beats animals. From 3:30-5 pm, we’ll make sure ticketholders know too.




Fish & Wildlife Wants Feedback. Let’s Do That.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) is traveling the state this fall seeking public comments to help determine what values and priorities will drive the department over the next several years.

These meetings will help identify changes in WDFW’s operations and services and help shape policy, budget and fee proposals. The department’s press release says it wants to strengthen relationships with “anglers, hungers, outdoor recreation groups and others interested in fish and wildlife in Washington.”

Let’s let them know what we think — in person and in writing.

They’re taking written comments through October on the department’s website and via email ( and Facebook ( Public meeting information is below.

There are so many issues, but here’s a start:

Please take a few minutes to let WDFW know what’s important to you when it comes to Washington wildlife, and if you can, attend one of these public meetings, all scheduled from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.:

Sept. 30: Center Place, 2426 N. Discovery Place, Spokane Valley

Oct. 6: WDFW Mill Creek Office, 16018 Mill Creek Blvd, Mill Creek

Oct. 8: Saint Martin’s University, Norman Worthington Conference Center, 5300 Pacific Ave SE, Lacey

Oct. 14: Water Resources Education Center, 4600 SE Columbia Way, Vancouver

Oct. 20: Port of Chelan County Confluence Technology Center, 285 Technology Center Way, Wenatchee

jim_unsworth_cropped_250pxEach meeting will include a brief presentation by a WDWF regional director, then participants will break into small groups to chat with department representatives. The department will summarize the comments and suggestions later this year.

Here’s a photo of WDFW Director Jim Unsworth, who started in January. He’s the one who’s making the effort to ask for feedback, which is commendable. Hi, Jim!

Major Successes With Fishing Line Recovery & Recycling Program

fishing lineWe received an encouraging email from Bonnie Anderson today regarding her work with parks departments over implementation of a Monofilament Fishing Line Recovery and Recycling Program.

It’s amazing what she’s been able to accomplish:

  • Her years of effort at the state level are really paying off. Senator Mark Mullet has set aside money in the state’s capital budget for the Puget Sound Corps program to build fishing line recovery bins. The work is being overseen by the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, which will determine how many bins will be built, where they will be located and other specifics.
  • The Sammamish Parks department has joined the Program and will soon install fishing line recycling bins at Pine Lake Park, Beaver Lake Park and Sammamish Landing.
  • The King County Parks department will start the Program by the end of November with 30 recycling bins at Cottage Lake Park,  Five Mile Park, Geneva Park and Dockton Park.  Other locations will soon be determined.
  • The Medina Parks department is considering the Program.  Bonnie is scheduled to meet with the board in September to discuss its possible implementation.
  • The Seattle Parks department has promised to study the Program for a possible project in 2016.
  • The Washington State Parks department has expressed interest in the Program, and Bonnie is providing them with additional information.

Bonnie would like to expand these efforts to other counties that offer recreational fishing. If you or someone you know would like to help, please contact her at:

Thanks and congratulations to Bonnie for all her hard work in pushing to implement the Monofilament Fishing Line Recycling and Recovery Program in as many parks, fishing piers, and marinas as possible!

Cecil the Lion

Cecil the Lion, as he was known, was a lion who lived in Zimbabwe. You’ve probably seen the media storm and public outrage this week about his murder. A wealthy American paid to hunt down Cecil—at night, by luring him out of a preserve—and shoot him with a crossbow.

a lion similar to Cecil

It was nothing but a cowardly act by a small-minded trophy hunter, hell-bent on proving his sense of worth by killing others.

What I learned from the frenzy this week is that it pays to have a name. Cecil was a lion who’d been photographed by tourists for years (he was 12 or 13). He was GPS-collared and was part of an Oxford University study. But he was no different from many other lions that wealthy westerners (usually Americans) pay to kill. Six hundred lions are killed in trophy hunts every year, according to National Geographic.

Cecil sparked public outcry because he was well-known. In the same way we mourn for a celebrity’s death, but not the random people who also die.

For most people, the lion is a majestic creature. King of the jungle. We don’t associate them with food or clothing. That’s another thing Cecil had going for him. People around the world have issued hate mail and death threats to Cecil’s killer, and vigils and protests have sprung up at the man’s business.

Most of the people disgusted with Cecil’s death likely also eat and wear other animals. It’s a disconnect. Melanie Joy addresses this topic in-depth in her book, Why we Love Dogs, Eat pigs, and Wear Cows. This phenomenon (of loving some animals and eating others) she calls carnism. The book explains how people compartmentalize and justify this discrepancy.

It’s okay to mourn for Cecil. His death was a tragedy. His pride is in jeopardy, and his cubs will likely be killed by competing lions. But we need to also mourn for the millions of dogs and cats who are euthanized each year because they have no homes. And for the billions of farmed animals whose lives are brutal and short. They are all as precious as Cecil and as deserving of life.

We can’t stop evil people from hunting (although signing the petition to ask Zimbabwe to stop issuing hunting permits or the petition to include lions on the endangered species list would help). But we can adopt dogs and cats and never buy from breeders. And we can choose to not eat animals.

If you’re not already, please go vegan—for the countless animals just like Cecil, who are worthy of our admiration and who want to live.

Help save the New York Blood Center chimps

You may have heard about a group of chimpanzees who are in a horrible predicament. They’ve spent their lives as research subjects in Liberia.

If that wasn’t bad enough, the New York Blood Center (NYBC), the organization that exploited the chimps in the name of “science” recently walked away from its obligation to feed and care for the chimps for the rest of their lives.

NYBC had been spending $30,000 a month on 66 chimps, who are no longer being tested on and are living on secluded islands near the country’s capital, Monrovia. But they cut funding and the chimps, many with hepatitis and other viruses, are at risk of dying from dehydration and starvation.

image of chimps in Tanzania c/o "Gombe Stream NP Mutter und Kinder" by Ikiwaner - Own work. Licensed under GFDL 1.2 via Wikimedia Commons -



Cipriani, an upscale event space, is hosting an NYBC fundraising gala on November 5 with sponsorship levels up to $150,000.

CALL (646) 723 0826 and ask for an event planner. Politely explain why you are calling and let them know you are part of an ongoing campaign to have Cipriani cancel this event.

POST to Cipriani Facebook page


CALL: 212-842-7300 and demand Howard Milstein, Chairman of the NYBC Board of Trustees, reinstate funding for the abandoned chimps.

Milford Management is Howard Milstein’s real esate company


Use these automated tweetsheets to contact NYBC donors and the media. You can also draft your own tweets to the recipients in these sheets:

Additional Tweetsheet

For more info about the abandoned chimps, read:

Senate vote on horse slaughter and cruel experiments

It’s a big week in the U.S. Senate, with an agriculture appropriations bill coming up for a vote that will include two key animal issues:

The first is about horse slaughter. An amendment that would help prevent the opening of horse slaughter plants — which often kill young, healthy animals and sell their meat to other countries — narrowly failed in the House. Now it needs to pass the Senate.

The second issue would protect farm animals from the kind of cruel experiments uncovered by The New York Times’ investigation into the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in Nebraska. Pigs, cows and lambs are among the animals who endure grisly treatment at taxpayers’ expense, to help the declining meat industry. The appropriations bill needs to include language thta will ensure federal agricultural research meets basic animal welfare standards.


If you live in Washington, please call Sen. Patty Murray at 202-224-2621 (who sits on the Appropriations Committee) and Sen. Maria Cantwell at 202-224-3441 to encourage them to support the amendment to defund inspections of horse slaughter plants and to support language that would protect farm animals from abuses in federal research facilities.

Calls take about one minute each and send the most powerful message. It’s also helpful to follow up with a written message — and you’ll find your Senators’ email addresses here.

Washington State Parks are killing geese again

In 2014, over 1200 geese were killed in local and state parks. And it’s starting again.

canada geese

(from Peace for Geese Project)

Washington State Parks has joined the interlocal agreement to kill geese throughout the Puget Sound region. After hiring Wildlife Services in 2013 to kill geese at Lake Sammamish State Park, Washington State Parks stated they had no plans to kill geese in 2014. However, in 2014 they once again paid to have geese killed at Lake Sammamish State Park and also at Deception Pass State Park.

Interlocal agreement members need to stop the killing. And, they need to be held accountable for accepting obvious discrepancies and inaccuracies in the record keeping and reporting provided by Wildlife Services.

Please contact Washington State Parks to ask them to stop killing geese.

Washington State Parks and Recreation Commissioners and Director’s Office
Phone: (360) 902-8502

For more info, check out the Peace for Geese Project on Facebook.

Take action against Primate Products Inc.

Primate Products Inc. is not just a primate dealer. It’s a house or horrors for the primates confined there. PPI, in Hendry County, Florida, imports, warehouses, and sells monkeys destined for experiments. They have federal contracts worth more than $13 million (including by the NIH, the Army, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

This horrific operation neglect, abuse, and terrorize monkeys. They’ve been cited by the USDA for violating animal welfare regulations–yet the abuse continues.

Please click this link and sign the petition at the end of the page. The content isn’t pleasant, but please think of the monkeys trapped in this hellhole. Do it for them.

It’s your opportunity to ask officials in Hendry County, Florida, to take action against PPI and close it for good.