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i Dec 13th by

Egg farmer seeks court ruling on animal cruelty act
Exactly how much space is a chicken legally entitled to have in a California henhouse?  A Modesto farmer sued the state and the Humane Society of the United States on Wednesday seeking to answer that question, as egg producers begin overhauling their operations to meet an anti-cruelty measure that was approved by state voters in 2008.  The lawsuit, filed in Fresno County Superior Court by egg farmer J.S. West, is asking for a judge to interpret and clarify California’s Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act, known as Proposition 2.

Unhealthy living stays despite disease fear-study
People across the world continue to smoke, drink and avoid exercise even though they also fear their unhealthy lifestyles will lead to long-term chronic disease, an international study found on Tuesday.   When asked to name their biggest barrier to making healthier lifestyle choices, 24 percent of those surveyed cited lack of time, almost a fifth cited motivation and 14 percent blamed the expense.

State wildlife officials support delisting of gray wolf
Wisconsin wildlife officials say they support a third effort to remove the gray wolf from the federal endangered species’ list. The U.S. Fish-and-Wildlife Service said last week it would try again to de-list the wolf, after lawsuits from animal rights groups rejected the action twice before.

Pit bull laws have teeth, need braces
The study, published in the October edition of the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, was written by Gary Patronek, Margaret Slater and Amy Marder. The conclusion is that breed-specific legislation does nothing to prevent dog bites.  Using data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the state of Colorado and smaller jurisdictions, Patronek and his colleagues estimate that a community would have to ban more than 100,000 dogs of a targeted breed to prevent a single serious dog bite.

Some want state to ban exotic pets
A rescued lion living in an Albion animal sanctuary died this week of kidney failure, but his caretakers say his death could’ve been prevented if Indiana prohibited the ownership of exotic pets.  According to his caretakers, Kovu was at least 10 years old, and recovering from a number of health problems.  ” Lots of people own exotic animals like Kovu and many neglect them.” said Lori Gagen, director of the Black Pine Animal Sanctuary where Kovu was staying.

Proposal seeks to ban animal sales in Fort Collins pet shops
The sale of dogs, cats and other small animals at pet stores would be banned in Fort Collins under a proposal that might be headed to the April 2011 municipal ballot.  In addition to cats and dogs, the sale ban would apply to birds, reptiles, amphibians and animals such as mice, hamsters and ferrets.  The goal of the ban is to disrupt the business of puppy mills and kitten factories that breed large numbers of animals in inhumane conditions.

Breeders dump dogs before new laws begin in 2011
Strict new regulations for breeders are about to take effect in Oklahoma. That has many breeders handing their dogs over to rescue groups…many commercial breeders don’t believe they will be able comply with the regulations that have been proposed at part of the Commercial Breeders Act.

Domestic violence law should include pet abuse
Sixty-eight percent of battered women report violence toward their pets, and up to 40 percent say they feel they cannot flee their abuser out of fear for the safety of their animals.  “It’s one of the strongest manipulative tools of intimidation and anger,” said Jane Occhiolini, a retired victim advocate and friend of Cornwell’s who urged Fasano to file the bill. “This is the kind of thing we’re trying to fight.”

Sanctuary animals to get human pacemakers
An animal sanctuary about 20 miles east of Brighton could be making veterinary medical history.  The shelter will soon begin receiving donated pacemakers from humans to be implanted in animals.  The shelter’s now working with Johns Hopkins to receive donated, slightly used human pacemakers for animals.  The first arriving next week, from a family who just lost an elderly loved one with a new pacemaker.

Caged and bound for Britain: Factory-farmed monkeys are being shipped in their thousands to UK laboratories
Although experimenting on monkeys caught in the wild was banned in Britain in 1997, laboratories across the UK have begun exploiting a ‘loophole’ in the law that allows them to use the offspring of wild-caught primates

Scientists to study animals’ feelings
Australian scientists have set themselves the challenge of understanding the minds of animals and what they are feeling.  A team based at the CSIRO aims to use the study to reduce stress and pain in livestock.  “Ultimately, the outcomes of this research will expand on our understanding of emotional and cognitive functions of livestock and the impacts of farming practices on animal welfare.”

Revised Veterinarian Oath Recognizes Animal Welfare
The AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) last week announced the addition of the words “animal welfare” in the oath taken by new veterinarian graduates.  The concept of animal welfare is not new, but recognition by an organization that represents U.S. veterinarians is a huge step forward for animals.

Basel Declaration defends animal research
Now, in a bid to reverse that trend, more than 50 top scientists working in Germany and Switzerland have launched an education offensive. Meeting in Basel on 29 November, they drafted and signed a declaration pledging to be more open about their research, and to engage in more public dialogue.

D
og dummy simulates crisis situations in safe environment for v
et students

To teach veterinary students how to handle emergencies without endangering a critical patient’s well-being, a Cornell veterinarian has designed a sophisticated “rescue dog” mannequin and software program — the first of its kind in veterinary medicine.

Program Provides Food For Pets Of Meals On Wheels Clients
Once a month, Sumbler stops by Independent Living’s kibble closet, loads up her truc, and makes one of the most important deliveries for the animal loving clients of the organization.  “Independent Living has started Kibble on Wheels in 2006 because we were noticing that some of our Meals on Wheels clients were feeding part of their meals to their pet,” said Independent Living’s Julie Christensen. “And that’s not good for the pet or for the senior.”