Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Update on California Ballot Measure to Ban Abusive Factory Farming Practices

The Humane Society of the United States is attempting to put a measure on the 2008 ballot that would outlaw the cruel confinement of veal calves, egg-laying hens, and breeding pigs. This measure will phase out the use of the gestation crate for pigs, the battery cage for egg-laying hens and prevent the use of the “veal crate” for male calves.

A grassroots effort to collect 650,000 signatures to qualify this initiative for the November 2008 ballot is now underway! If you are interested in finding out more about this campaign you might want to attend one of these kick off events in your area.

**Special Guests**
Wayne Pacelle, CEO/President, The Humane Society of the U.S.
Gene Baur, Founder/President, Farm Sanctuary
Michael Markarian, Executive Vice-President, The Humane Society of the U.S.

10800 West Pico Blvd. #312
Los Angeles, CA 90064
6:00pm – 9:00pm

555 East Main Street
Ventura, CA 93001
6:00pm – 9:00pm

7:30pm – 10:00pm

309 E. Second Street
Pomona, CA 91766
11:00am – 2:00pm

25801 Obrero Drive
Mission Viejo, CA 92691
9:30am and 11:30am Services

For more information, please contact Director@humanecalifornia.org

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Go See Sharkwater

Having garnered 21 awards at film festivals around the world, filmmaker Rob Stewart’s epic journey Sharkwater puts him on the front lines to save the planet.

Part biologist, part investigative reporter, Stewart follows the trail of the multi-billion dollar shark fin trade and sets off a chain of events that has to be seen to be believed. His adventure becomes a dangerous mission involving espionage, corrupt governments, mafia rings, his arrest and a glimpse at his own mortality.

In an effort to protect sharks, Stewart teams up with renegade conservationist Paul Watson of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. A confrontation between the Sea Shepherd and shark poachers in Guatemala results in a dramatic confrontation with a pirate Guatemalan fishing boat. But that’s just the beginning. As they become involved in a gunboat chase, face corrupt court systems and attempted murder charges, they are forced to flee for their lives.

Filmed in 15 countries in visually stunning, high definition video, Sharkwater takes you to the most shark-rich waters of the world, exposing the exploitation and corruption surrounding the world’s shark populations. What one comes away with is a story about the beauty of life on earth and our role in protecting its amazing balance.

Los Angeles will get to see what the buzz is about beginning November 2nd at the Mann's Beverly Center. This release follows a successful run in Canada, where Sharkwater broke opening weekend box office records, out-grossing the opening weekends of Bowling for Columbine, March of the Penguins and An Inconvenient Truth.

You'll never look at sharks in the same way again.

Visit http://www.sharkwater.com/index.php for more information on this exciting and important film.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Match Maker, Match Maker, Find Me a Match...

Many adopters are discovering a powerful new tool to help them find their perfect pet. Of course, we're talking about LA Animal Services' Match Maker program. It is truly wonderful that more and more guardians are finding their perfect pet using Match Maker. However, it is startling how many people still express surprise when they first learn about this amazing program. So we are asking you to help us get the word out to anyone looking for a pet.

Match Maker is simple to use and can be accessed from the comfort of your home or office. Just click on this Match Maker link and you will be able to place a personalized request for your perfect pet. You simply tell Match Maker the breed, age, sex, and color of the pet you are looking to adopt. Then Match Maker will automatically contact you by e-mail with a picture and description of any pet matching your request, along with information on when and where you can find your new pet.

Currently, the program is designed to help you find a dog, but we hope soon you will be able to find your new pet cat and rabbit using Match Maker. Try it out, and tell all your family, friends, and neighbors about Match Maker.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Renewing Fido’s License Just Got Easier

Renewing your dog’s license just got a whole lot easier and more convenient. All you have to do is go to LA Animal Services’ website located at http://www.LAAnimalServices.com and click on the online licensing icon.

Then you just enter the license and person id number from the renewal notice you received in mail, verify your information is correct, the rabies vaccination has not expired, and the license type is correct. You can pay for your renewal with your credit card from the comfort of your home or office.

You will receive your new license certificate in the mail in a few weeks. Until then your receipt is your proof that your dog's license is current.

Remember, 100% of the dogs that come into our Animal Care Centers with a current license, go home! Unfortunately, most pets that come into our Centers have no identification and consequently never go home again. If you love your pet, license your pet!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Historic California Ballot Measure Launched to Ban Abusive Factory Farming Practices

An historic ballot initiative signature-gathering effort is now fully underway in California to place on the statewide ballot a measure to outlaw the cruel and intensive confinement of pregnant pigs, veal calves and egg-laying hens on industrialized factory farms. Californians for Humane Farms, sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States, Farm Sanctuary, and other animal protection groups, family farmers, veterinarians and public health professionals, are working all over the state to gather a goal of 650,000 signatures by February 22, 2008, to place a measure on the 2008 November ballot.

For decades, California’s family and small farmers raised animals in a humane manner, allowing them access to the outdoors and the ability to engage in their natural behaviors. Today, many family farmers have been displaced by corporate farming interests, and it’s not unusual for the corporate farmers to set aside animal husbandry standards and instead raise some animals in intensive confinement. It’s a confinement so severe that the animals cannot even turn around in their cages or crates. The extreme, overcrowded conditions cause suffering for the animals while contributing to air pollution, contaminating groundwater and threatening human health. This ballot initiative is intended to revive California’s tradition of humane farming and protect animals, the environment and human health.

Veal Crates
The veal crate is widely known as one of the most cruel and deplorable animal husbandry techniques being used today. Young calves are kept in tiny stalls, confined so restrictively that they are not even able to turn around or extend their limbs. Research has shown that, as a result of these conditions, these calves exhibit abnormal coping behaviors associated with stress and fear. These behaviors include head tossing, head shaking, kicking, scratching and stereotypical chewing. After 16-20 weeks, these weakened animals are sent to slaughter for veal.

Battery Cages
California has approximately 19 million egg-laying hens. The vast majority of them are confined in cages – known as “battery cages” - so small that they can barely move. In fact, each caged hen has less space than a sheet of letter-sized paper on which to live for more than a year before she’s slaughtered.

These birds are crammed in filthy, barren spaces where they can’t even spread their wings. With no opportunity to nest, dust bathe, perch, and walk, these birds endure lives filled with suffering. Poultry scientist Dr. Ian Duncan states unequivocally: “Battery cages for laying hens have been shown (by me and others) to cause extreme frustration particularly when the hen wants to lay an egg. Battery cages are being phased out in Europe and other more humane husbandry systems are being developed.”

Gestation Crates
Arguably cruel and inhumane is one description of the way female breeding pigs are treated on factory farms. Breeding sows are confined in barren metal cages for almost their entire lives. During their pregnancies, the sows are severely restricted in individual “gestation crates” measuring just two feet wide. Like the veal calves, they are unable to exercise, turn around or even extend their limbs. After giving birth to an average of five or six litters of piglets in four years, the sows are sent to slaughter as well.

Both veal and gestation crates have been outlawed in several countries. In the U.S. the gestation crate was outlawed in 2002 by passage of a precedent-setting citizen initiative in Florida, and both veal and gestation crates were banned by initiatives in Arizona in 2006. Californians could have an opportunity to weigh in here on the veal and gestation crate and the battery cage issues if this measure qualifies for the 2008 general election.

For more information on these issues, on Californians for Humane Farms, or on how to get involved, you can contact them at:

Californians for Humane Farms
6311 Van Nuys Blvd; PMB 438
Van Nuys, CA 91401