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Animal Welfare. 2010-2011. Fighting Old Battles in a New Year.

We are at the cusp of another year, and we do not know with utmost certainty what the new year will bring to animal welfare. Chances are, there will be more of the same---heart-warming rescues-- continued protests against the circus, the fur industry, the farm industry, puppy mills, animal experimentation, and hunting. The year 2011 is going to be a stew of unspeakable cruelty mixed in with chunks of sweet animal liberation. Even with morphing specifics, the issues will follow a general, well-trodden path. The route straddles a great divide between good and evil. We are on a continuum, and no one intends to jump off.

I can tell you one thing for certain; there will not be a cruelty-free world in 2011. For as long as humankind is around, there will be animal cruelty. Humankind is the common denominator. As I have stated before, there is no animal-to-animal cruelty, no animal-to-human cruelty. But, there is human-to-animal and human-to-human cruelty. It is a small consolation that from t…

Keep Life in the Park. KLIP. New Jersey. Season's Greetings. 2010 in Review.

Dear Friends of NJ Wildlife,

Happy Holidays from Keep Life In the Park to you and your families. Together, we've accomplished so much for our local wildlife.
In Passaic County, we showed our outrage at the murder of innocent deer in Garret Mountain and Rifle Camp Parks in Woodland Park. Due to many important follow up meetings with Freeholders, we feel confident that the remaining deer are safe for now.
In Bergen County, we've prevented the future gassing of our feathered friends! We've increased the awareness of non-lethal protocol of dealing with geese in the county parks. The politicians heard us loud and clear and this was a true victory for the animals!
Almost immediately following the Woodland Park deer bow hunt, the town of Holmdel began a deer bow hunt. Holmdel resident Laurie Perla didn’t waste any time in calling in the media, and worked diligently bringing non-lethal solutions to the Town Council. And, they’re listening!
In Essex County, we galvanized a community aga…

2010 New Jersey Bear Massacre. Hunters' Attitudes. The Nadir of Sensitivity.

Going over the many different news reports concerning the just concluded 2010 New Jersey Bear Massacre, I am seriously distressed by the crass mentality of those who participated in the killing.

A certain Cindy Partipilo commented :

" Now we can just hunt however we want but I still have a problem. They say we can kill cubs and I want my 10 year old son to kill his first cub, but he doesn’t want to do it because his class adopted some computer Polar Bear Cub for their Nature and Ecology study. Now he doesn’t get it when I tell him it’s okay to shoot the black ones, just not the white ones. How do I talk some sense into the child? Can we get them to quit teaching about saving the Environment and Ecology so we can teach our children whatever we want? "

Believe it or not, the Department of Fish & Wildlife (DFW) permitted the killing of bear cubs. In fact, the DFW encouraged hunters to shoot all bears regardless of their weight and age. And at the other end of the barrel, even …

Philippines. Bureau of Animal Industry. Animal Welfare Division. Angel Mateo. Resign!

Who is Dr. Angel Mateo?

Dr. Mateo is head of the Animal Welfare Division of the Bureau of Animal Industry. This Division is tasked to implement the Animal Welfare Act or RA 8485. Dr Mateo has been occupying this position since the law was passed in 1998.

Ask any animal welfare group if they have received action from this official on any cruelty case and you will be met with a flat out "No." But don't take our word for it: go and call the BAI-AWD at 924-7951 when you want to report animal cruelty and see where it leads you.

How to reach Dr. Mateo?

We don't know.
Call and he isn't there.

Text him on his cellphone 09189005784 and he doesn't reply. Write him a letter, and if after one month - if you are lucky - he will reply with a letter that simply refers your letter back to the company you are complaining about or he would refer it to another Division.

None of the media practitioners have been able to reach Dr. Mateo himself for comment on the granting of an "an…

2010 Bear Hunt. A Message from Keep Life in the Park. Gov. Christie. DEP Bob Martin. DFW Larry Herrighty.

Dear Friends,

My sincere thanks to all who came out to the demo yesterday in the Whittingham Wildlife Management Area in Fredon. We easily numbered 150 and our energy was palpable as we expressed our outrage at this hunt, not only at the few hunters who brought in the bears they slaughtered, but to the NJ Div. of Fish & Wildlife staff, whose arrogant Assistant Director of Operations, Larry Herrighty aka 'Lampchop', viewed us cowardly through binoculars. All week, they felt so threatened that not only were State Police on hand, AND Homeland Security, but some DFW officers appeared to be wearing green bullet-proof vests. Excuse me - we are NON-VIOLENT. THEY HAVE THE GUNS!

This is not the end but only the beginning of much ongoing dedicated work to ensure that NJ legislators, 'get the message' LOUD AND CLEAR: that we are not going to forget this; that we are going to hold them accountable; and that we will VOTE THEM OUT. We are going to expose the New Jersey Outdoor All…

2010 New Jersey Black Bear Hunt. The True Nature of the Black Bear. Gov. Chris Christie. DEP Bob Martin. Nabobs of Cruelty.

This video was filmed in 2009, just before Gov. Christie took office. Even then, it was obvious to many that he would support and abet the hunting of NJ's black bears. In December 2010, we heard him state that the ongoing hunt, his chosen measure for controlling the alleged bear population growth, is based on Science. Gov. Christie's Science consists of the duplicated reports of human-bear encounters by the Division of Fish and Wildlife (DFW), and reports stating that nearly 100% of the residents of bear country are securing their garbage by using bear-proof garbage bins (DFW). If this is true, then I am Neil Armstrong and I walked on the Moon. If truth be known, this hunt is a gift to the Governor's political supporters, a massacre, a program of extermination, and a joyride for the blood-lusting hunters. The Governor, and his pathetic Yes-Man Bob Martin of the DEP, are not interested in empirical and scientific evidence, like this video, where we can witness the non-aggre…

2010 New Jersey Bear Hunt. Whittingham Weigh Station. The Bears Get Massacred. Gov. Chris Christie. DEP Bob Martin.

Monday, the 6th, marked the first day of a scheduled 6-day "bear hunt," and I joined a handful of protesters at the Whittingham Wildlife Management Area in Newton, New Jersey. It is located along Route 206, just north of Andover. The Division of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) manages this controlled area, and this is where they located one of their four weigh stations. Hunters are supposed to haul their kills to these stations for weighing and tagging.

Handful? Well, yeah. The DFW limited the number of protesters to 25, citing safety and crowd control. The state police and DFW rangers were in attendance to enforce this rule. But there is another, rather convenient, reason for the DFW to limit protesters. The DFW is accused of cooking the books concerning the number of bear sightings in residential areas, and a certain Professor Dr. Edward Tavss of Rutgers University proved, through an extensive study of the records, that serious anomalies, such as doubling the number of human-bear …

2010 New Jersey Bear Hunt. Manufactured Statistics, Not Science. Gov. Christie. DEP Commissioner Bob Martin.

It usually takes an insider to show us the way through the veil of hypocrisy and past a wall of lies. Governor Christie, together with Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Bob Martin, champions a science-based "bear hunt" to control the black bear population in New Jersey. But, is it truly a hunt when hunters are allowed to bait the bears with food instead of the traditional method of stalking the prey? Where is the skill, or sportman's honor, in shooting a baited animal? Even worse, bear cubs no bigger than your average sized dog have been shot dead. What is euphemistically referred to as a hunt is, in reality, a wholesale massacre of bear families. It is a hate-based destruction of our natural treasures. This massacre, over 400 bears killed in the first three days, panders to the blood lust of the hunting community. It is as banal as that and the hunters frolick upon the blood of innocent and harmless bears that they so readily portrayed as a nuisa…

Bacon and Eggs. Yesterday's Slaughter is Tomorrow's Breakfast Treat.

Now that the cold weather has set in, I can no longer sit in Bryant Park in the mornings prior to beginning work. Gone are the days, at least for almost a year, when I can sip my coffee under a warm and bright sun and watch the early birds enjoy the beginning of a new Summer day. Even at 9am, there were already tourists in the park, snapping away with their cameras, sitting in circles on the lawn, while the pigeons and birds enjoy an abundance of food. Other office workers stopped and took in the sun. It is a morning ritual repeated throughout the city in cafes, public parks, church yards and in those office building promenades that fail miserably in their intended purpose. There is a need for people to flush their pyschologic drains before they face the withering fire of the new workday. But in these cold months, people trot across the park like it was a place of contagious diseases. Most benches are empty. The trees stand tall and cold like condemned criminals waiting to be shot. The …

Protest Against Gov. Christie's Trophy Bear Hunt. Dec. 3, 2010. Trenton, New Jersey.

Dear Friends of NJ Wildlife,

The following alert is from APL-NJ. Please try to come to Trenton if you can!

This rally is being sponsored by Friends of Animals. For specific information, please contact Edita Birnkrant, NY Director, Friends of Animals at Edita@friendsofanimals.org or 212.247.8120, or Dustin Rhodes at Dustin@friendsofanimas.org or 202.906.0210. APLNJ is grateful for FoA's support in stopping the NJ bear hunt and we encourage your attendance.
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Support The Right To Arm Bears Rally
Reject the Slaughter
Defend Black Bears in New Jersey
Friday, December 3, 1pm - 3pm
State House, Trenton, NJ

Your presence is urgently needed at a rally organized by Friends of Animals (FoA) and joined by NJ-based group Heart for Animals
http://www.meetup.com/HeartforAnimals, on Friday, December 3, where we’ll protest New Jersey's bear hunt directly to Gov. Chris Christie’s (R-NJ) office at the State House in …

Bear Trophy Hunt 2010. Board of Freeholders. Bergen County.

I am crossposting an announcement from Keep Life in the Park regarding a motion to ask the Bergen Board of Freeholders to come up with a resolution against Gov. Christie's trophy hunt which begins on December 6th. Those who can attend the meeting, please do so.

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Hi Everyone,

Please save the time and date. This Wed. Dec. 1st 7:30 Public Meeting Room (5th Floor), One Bergen County Plaza, Hackensack, New Jersey, some KLIP members are going to the Bergen County Freeholders meeting to ask for a resolution against the NJ Black Bear Hunt which is set to start on next Mon.

Educate these politicians that the Div. of Fish & Wildlife is not pro-animal, but rather they are almost always anti animal. Please lend your voice to this request. You can just go up and request the resolution against the hunt. That's all we need from you. We need to show that the people are against this trophy hunt! This is important and the politicians should hear from us …

Van Saun Park. Squirrel on the Job. Winter Around the Corner. Nov., 2010.

Van Saun Park is, once again, in its prettiest with Fall colors in full glory. It is remarkable how, in life, a blossoming period precedes a natural death. It is said that dying patients get better a few days before they expire, like a bulb that shines brightly before it burns out. It actually happened in my father's case who became conscious and interactive on a Tuesday and then died on the following Thursday. Well, Van Saun Park is preparing for the deep freeze to come, and the animals know it.
Armed with my new 300mm zoom lens, I walked around the park on Veteran's Day, looking for a good shot. It was a cloudy afternoon and good photo opportunities would be close to nonexistent. One could feel that even nature didn't want to do anything worthwhile. I noticed a corner of the playground that had patchy sunlight on it. The sunlight fell on the ground, the moving three branches and leaves overhead made the area blink from dark to light. Good scene, but no cigar. Until, a squ…

Barangay Bel Air. Makati. Victor Gomez. Starved Cats. Charged with Animal Cruelty. Not Fit for Re-Election.

I thought I was lucky to be a stray in such an upscale community. Some kind ladies from an organization named CARA Welfare had me neutered and were feeding me outside their homes.I even heard that they had an agreement with barangay officia...ls for a "Trap-Neuter-Return" arrangement for cats so everything was going great.... until that dark day in December 2007 when I found myself in a cat trap for the second time.
Hours stretched into days and nobody came to feed me and the other 5 cats who were also trapped like me. Nobody came to even give us a drop of water when the sun beat down on our traps, making them sizzling hot. I grew weak and the last thing I ever saw were cats feebly meowing in the other traps and three (3) others who were already unconscious.
When I came to, a kind lady -one of those from CARA- was gently stroking my head. I overheard her saying softly over and over again that she was sorry for what I had to go through because of the lack of a heart and a cons…

Gov. Christie's 2010 Trophy Bear Hunt. Protest. Dover, New Jersey. Blood Lust. Kill the Hunt, Not the Bears.

By one organizer's count, ninety-five people came to this demonstration in Dover, New Jersey. This video was taken before all the protesters arrived at the scene, Route 46 corner Sammis, in front of the Wachovia Bank. With nearly one hundred attendees, this demo sent a clear message that people care about New Jersey's black bears. Some people drove from as far as Camden County. I drove from Bergen County. All of us say the same thing---we disappove of the trophy hunt. Among other things, this organized killing is a waste of New Jersey's money. The pro-hunting groups want us to believe that hunting fees ($2 each) will cover the cost of the trophy hunt. This is not true, and not possible. Cost estimates put this trophy hunt at $2,000,000. As many as 10,000 permits will be open for purchase. If all those permits are bought, as many as 500-700 bears will be killed. However, in the last hunt before Gov. Corzine took office, only half of the available permits were purchased. Thi…

Bear Trophy Hunt 2010. New Jersey. Oppose Gov. Christie and the DEP Chairman Bob Martin.

I am crossposting an alert from the Animal Protection League of New Jersey regarding the scheduled bear trophy hunt in December 2010. Time is running out on our bears who should be considered one of our natural treasures instead of a neighborhood nuisance. I have had bear encounters in the woods of Essex and Sussex county areas, but none of them were harmful nor dangerous at all. The bears are more afraid of us than we are of them. Join demonstrations, write or call government officials, comment on newspaper articles, there are many ways to actively participate in the fight against cruelty and dubious government spending.

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There are Only 49 Days Left to Save Our Bears. Please join the campaign, get active and let everyone you know what's going on!

1. We need your help with getting APLNJ and the BEAR Group a meeting with Governor Christie.

•Ask the governor to meet with hunt opponents NOW!
•Ask him to stop this corrupt bear hunt NOW!

CONTACT GO…

Steven Corn Furs. Paramus, New Jersey. Columbus Day Sale 2010. Your Fur had a Face.

Steven Corn Furs. Doesn't that name strike fear into your heart? I mean, what monstrosity could be within those walls? I call this place, The Morgue on 17. With racks of skin and fur, their real owners no more, the name is well-earned.On this day, the store was having its Columbus Day Sale. Yes, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to save on the finest furs. If you didn't go, you lost out on 10% savings on 100% suffering. But, we went. And the supportive honking from passersby meant that we were welcome. And thank you, Mr. Corn, for turning on the sprinklers. We stayed, and we will be back.Would you recognize this fella? His hind legs bound, his forelegs chopped off, his fur ripped off, still alive, hours from death. His coat could very well be hanging on one of your racks, Mr. Corn.



Circus. Captive Animal Performers. Forced Labor. Slavery. Animal Cruelty by Patronage.

Don't be afraid. There are no gruesome images in this video. I know that there are some people who have a very shallow threshold for pain. They can't sleep at night; images of butchered or abused animals haunt them. Although I always look at those gut-wrenching images, primarily to acknowledge the suffering of the animals, I don't blame you for protecting your sanity.

Here is a video that is very well-done. It contains scenes of captive animal performances but none of the blood and gore. This is a video you can send to your friends who are still sitting in darkness, those who believe that performing animals are also having a great time, those who insist that the circus is wholesome family entertainment.

I'll let the video presentation speak for itself. And please, do not think that captive animal performances exist only in China. It is a global problem. We have our own home-grown example in the Ringling Bros Barnum & Bailey Circus.

Winter Furs. Red Bank, New Jersey. Demo. FAUN. CAAF. Oct. 16, 2010.

What's wrong with this picture?



Can you think of any situation, any circumstance which would justify such diabolical selfishness, such sickness and inhumanity? Well, neither can we...

This Saturday, October the 16th, FAUN NJ, in solidarity with our friends Caring Activists Against Fur (CAAF), will be making our immutable opposition to the horrific Chinese fur trade known to some unscrupulous cretins in Red Bank, NJ, who shamelessly, gleefully profit from just what you see above - the confinement, torture and extraordinarily brutal extermination of innocent beings - in the name of fickle "luxury" and transient, superfluous "fashion."

Come and add your voice to a burgeoning group of energetic animal activists whose prime objective is to elevate public awareness about the plight of innumerable defenseless foxes, minks, raccoons, dogs and cats, and other mammal victims of the gruesome Chinese fur trade, who are violently and systematically removed from…

North Utah Valley Animal Shelter. University of Utah. Dogs For Sale. Animal Experimentation. Public Trust.

" The barely existent "benefits" of experimenting on these animals doesn't even come close to the resulting moral loss. This is a good example of human depravity and selfishness. It's utterly unacceptable, and no, I will NOT ever take an animal to this kind of shelter; such a place is a fraud." Swampthing (Salt lake Tribune)

Swampthing had reason to be disdainful. It is more than a fraud; it is a betrayal. Recently, PETA uncovered a ghoulish detail about operations at the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS). They have been selling their dogs to the University of Utah who, in turn, uses them for experimentation.

Readers comments on the newspaper naturally veered towards the pros and cons of animal experimentation. But that is not the issue here. The issue is betrayal of mission. Animal shelters provide a haven for homeless and needy animals. That's why it is a shelter. The obligation to protect these animals from harm and sickness is implicit.

It does …

Animal Experimentation. Animals in Labs. Vivisection is Cruel.

The challenge facing us today is to make great strides in Medicine without the cruelty. Animal experimentation is repetitive. Grant proposals are submitted to keep white labcoated professionals employed, and the National Institute of Sciences is ever so willing to bless them with taxpayers money. If animal experimenters insist that some good comes out of animal testing, then they must also be ready to admit that it is hideously cruel. This, they refuse to admit and will never admit.

New Jersey. Paramus. Demonstrations. FAUN. CAAF. Animal Fur Trade. Steven Corn. Macy's

What do you see in the eyes of this poor creature? Objectified, robbed of his spirit, hopelessly broken, the innocent, frightened creature faces his oppressors as if hands which have only shown him hatred, pain and subjugation would suddenly show him love, kindness and mercy. This dog, like millions before him, is a victim of the fur industry. His chances of getting out alive are quite slim. This weekend, those of us who love dogs and feel a sense of kinship with them, as well as with our other mammalian friends enslaved, tortured and killed by the horrible, obscene fur industry, have an opportunity to stand up for them this Columbus Day weekend.

FAUN NJ, in solidarity with our friends Caring Activists Against Fur (CAAF), will be making our immutable opposition to the horrific Chinese fur trade known to those unscrupulous cretins whose livelihood is the confinement, torture and extraordinarily brutal extermination of innocent beings - all in the name of fickle "luxury" and t…

Building a More Humane Society. Carpe diem. Little Things Add Up.

I am a bit of a hypocrite. I dislike people who proselytize although I am guilty of it to some degree. It is especially irksome when religion is the issue, and I am quick to dash hopes and shut the door on any chances of conversion. I will, on the other hand, preach the benefits of a meatless diet. I will save the heathens from their meaty diets. And I find nothing wrong with that, only good. Such is the nature of bias.

Assuming an open and fair mind, I should not come down hard on the agents of change. They are just fulfilling their mission. How else will they get the word out to the people if they don't try?

My Facebook friend recounted her run-in with a confirmed meateater at "the morgue"---my term for the meat section of a supermarket. A suggestion was made to view the slaughterhouse videos on the web. The steak-lover listened but there was no confirmation that he actually viewed the videos afterwards. Nevertheless, a seed was planted and that is enough to make any pro…

Animals Commune. Humankind's Flawed Existence.

This photograph speaks to me. It suggests a certain communion between farm, presumably slaughter-bound, animals. It portrays a kind of camaraderie, a we're-all-together-in-this brotherhood, a recognition of a common fate. Surely, if people can have it, animals also possess a sense of being and community.

Love thy neighbor. Animals, instinctively or consciously, know this more profoundly than our species. Unlike the animals, we are capable of plotting the murder of a fellow human for revenge and material gain. At one end, we produce profound scientific minds and persuasive moral philosophers. But at another end, there are the serial killers, animal torturers, and mass murderers. We raise other living beings for slaughter and consumption, disregarding their sentience. We organize armed forces to destroy societies opposed to us and justify it as inevitable, necessary, as the right course of action. Who are we, but a flawed species. Our dominion over animals is utterly wrong and our …

New Jersey. Demo Against Live Animal Markets. Marzigliano's in West New York (NJ).

Please speak out for the all-too-often forgotten animals at live markets--chickens, ducks, turkeys, rabbits, turtles, quail and other innocents who are sold as "food".

Call (732)693-9044, or email anthony@faunnj.org for more information about this event.

WHEN: Saturday, September 18th, 2010.
TIME: From 1pm through 4pm.
WHERE: Marzigliano's Live Market , 5217 Bergenline Avenue, West New York, NJ, 07093-5512.

PARKING: *There is metered parking all along Bergenline Avenue, however since this demonstration is on a Saturday, finding a spot close to the demo location might be a problem. For those driving in and unfamiliar with the area, J F Kennedy Blvd is one of the main thoroughfares running through the town of West New York. Take J F Kennedy Blvd to 52nd Street, where you will see a large PC Richards on the corner. Turn onto 52nd Street, and drive down approximately 3/4 of a block, you will pass a long/large brown building. Just beyond this building on your right hand side is a…

Santo Domingo. Stray Animals. What is their real status?

It might be the area I am staying at, the juction of Avenida Mexico and Avenida Maximo Gomez, but I have seen less stray animals than I expected before coming to Santo Domingo. Many of the stray dogs I have seen are full-bodied with good fur on them. Only a few fit my image of a stray animal---thin, mangy, having only clumps of matted fur, a body spangled with festering wounds. Stray animals also have that look of being on a constant search for food. This is a very sad image. These are certainly not the strays that I meet at the shelter in New Jersey. Our strays escaped from their homes and lost their way, ending up at the shelter. The strays in Santo DomingoI make the streets their home. They live and die on the concrete pavements of the city. Frequent visitors to garbage dumps, these dogs consume rotten, maggot-infested leftovers. I have seen them in Santo Domingo, but not many. Is this good?

Well, I don't know for sure. As I said, it could be the area I am residing at. However,…

Santo Domingo. Fresh Coconuts and Meat.

Greetings from Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic. I arrived here three days ago and I must say that the Dominicans have been friendly and helpful. My Spanish is close to nil, but I get by quite well. I visited Zona Colonial, a small district in the city, where visitors can see the earliest structures built by the Europeans in the New World ( early 1500s). The other part the zona reminded me of the French Quarter of New Orleans. There were some pesky street vendors, but no one that I would categorize as a problem.

The other day, I did something I haven't done in decades--I bought a whole coconut from the pushcart man who expertly chopped it up with his long and exceedingly sharp machete so I could drink the juice and eat the meat. This is a throwback to my younger years in the Phiippines. How simple, innocent, and inexpensive! Yet, you get to consume a fresh fruit untouched by human hands; the juice and meat are inside the husk. I don't think I will ever see a coconut push…

EPA. Lead Core Components in Ammo. Harmful to the Environment. Petition and Public Comment.

Greetings. I am crossposting a message from the group, Keep Life in the Park (KLIP) headed by a very dedicated animal rights proponent, Merrilee Cichy. KLIP has been very active and vigilant against all forms of animal cruelty including the gassing of park geese, and deer/bear hunting. They are the good guys.

Lead core components found in traditional ammunition are destructive to the environment. Please let the Environmental Protection Agency know that you are opposed to this sort of harmful products. It's about a healthy Earth, the only place in the universe that will accept us. It's our only lifeboat in a hostile cosmic world. Always do what is good for the Earth.

The elimination of ammunition with lead core components will have a positive effect on animal welfare as sport hunting with such ammunition will effectively cease.

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Dear Friends of NJ Wildlife,

EPA Considering Ban on Traditional Ammunition — Take Action Now

Wit…

Animal Intelligence. Communication. Vocabulary. What are they thinking?

A friend alerted me to a recently published Time Magazine issue on animal intelligence. I have lately been focused on the N.Y. Times and the Economist and so my radar didn't pick this one up. I couldn't get to the full article and so an aperitif is offered below. So, what else is new?

We know that research into animal intelligence, their communication skills when there is no common spoken language between them and us, has been ongoing for a long time and I truly wonder when it would be time for us to finally accept that they are not as dumb as we think they are. Sometimes, I feel that this sort of news articles are just fillers, old and dependable stories that will always ring a bell with readers. They are like cowboy / western movies. They're cheap to produce and people will always watch them.

The Wow factor is already stale. It's time to move on from our insistence that animals are nothing but blobs of protoplasm firing off involuntary reactions to outside stimuli. The…

Philippines. Death by Exhaust Fumes. Tambucho Gassing. The Nadir of Animal Cruelty.

Life has become quite hectic lately, with my son having two surgeries in Boston and I am planning a week's trip to the Dominican Republic very soon. But what has taken up most of my attention is the drafting of a petition against the legitimized gassing of dogs in the Philippines.

This isn't your usual gassing via carbon monoxide cylinders, but something worse than that. This sort of gassing uses the exhaust fumes from a motor vehicle. It's called TambuchoGassing. Yup, that's pretty hideous stuff and two government bodies in the Philippines ( The Committee on Animal Welfare and the Department of Agriculture ) approved the method as an acceptable form of euthanasia. Incredible, isn't it? But human ignorance and depravity is bottomless, and I am surprised that I still get surprised by unfathomable acts of cruelty.

You can view the petition at Tambucho Gassing, and I invite you to read and understand it completely. It's not an April Fool's joke. I have included …

Niko. Before and After. A Dog Saved.

Just something to cheer you up. I found these photos of a pit bull named Niko on the web. His transformation from a homeless, downtrodden dog to a happy and proud one is the stuff of miracles. All he needed, after all, was some love and attention to bring him back from depression. Like humans, animals are social beings.

Philippines. Operation Calesa. Animal Welfare for Horse-Drawn Carriages.

Considering that the tides of animal welfare turn slowly, it is definitely great news to hear that the attention of several animal rights groups in the Philippines has now focused, along with the traditional forms of animal abuse, on the horse-drawn carriages ( Calesa ) that ferry people and supplies in both the city and the outlying provinces of the Philippines. Unlike the horse-drawn carriages seen in Europe and the United States, these calesas have always been a cheaper form of transportation, appealing largely to the proletarian people and rarely used for romantic and scenic rides around the neighborhood.

The reform's primary thrust comes from the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), the Animal Kingdom Foundation (AKF), and Care and Responsibility for Animals (CARA).
The typical scenario is one involving a gaunt, old horse pulling an overloaded wooden carriage in the extreme heat of the tropics, often amidst smoke-belching motor vehicles, salivating profusely from extreme e…

Bergen County NJ. Tap Water. United Water Co. Sodium in Our Water.

I must confess. I don't read all the mail I receive. Many of them end up, straight away, in the pile of papers meant for the municipal recycling pick-up truck. I am talking about mail regarding recent elections for Board of Directors at the credit union, or the latest news from the regional school system. Stuff like that, I am not truly interested in.

I did pay attention to one piece of innocuous-looking mail from the water company. It turned out to have a bit of a sting. What is true here in Bergen County could be true at your area of the country as well. Perhaps, we should take a harder look at how we are affecting our water supply and what the local water company is doing about it.

United Water New Jersey wanted to inform us that the level of sodium in our drinking water was higher than the upper limits set by the NJ Division of Environmental Protection (DEP). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is also involved in monitoring water quality but it has not set upper limi…