Yulin Dog Meat Festival

The Yulin Lychee and Dog Meat Festival, which serves up 15,000 dogs and cats, will start as planned on the Summer Solstice, undeterred by an alleged local, temporary ban on dog meat sales, which Chinese officials and dog meat vendors have disavowed.

The festival was started in 2010 as an economic strategy to boost the dog meat trade. It is a 10-day celebration of cruelty, with dogs and cats bludgeoned, often skinned alive, and roasted (alive) over a fire—while the crowd cheers. Some of the dogs are stolen pets, with their collars still in place.

While slow, progress has been made by humane organizations and activists: the size of the Yulin festival has declined, and there is increasing outrage and pressure both within China and internationally. This year a petition garnered 11M signatures calling for the end of the festival.

The path forward is likely to be protracted. Earlier this year China passed a “Foreign NGOs Law” which scrutinizes and requires official approval of the work of foreign activist organizations in that country. Until organizations like Humane Society International, a forerunner working to end the suffering of animals in Asia’s dog meat trade, receive permission from the Chinese government to continue their work, activities will be led by Chinese partners and activists.

In a country where eating cats and dogs is a long-standing practice in certain areas (as it is in some other Asian countries) a mindset shift to compassion—or at least to less cruel practices—likely will require continual, multi-tiered efforts to legislate change internally, to bring awareness and gently educate, and to provide viable alternatives. A substantive transformation in behavior and norms likely comes from cultural influences (we humans are, after all, communal animals) and a resultant internal shift in us that arises from considering things in a different way than we have before. Ultimately, hope lies in our ability to see animals as sentient beings.

In the meantime, consider signing this petition: Yulin petition

Click here for information on adopting dog meat trade dogs: Dog meat trade dog adoption

Sources:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-39958179

http://www.hsi.org/issues/dog_meat/facts/stopping-yulin-festival.html

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/05/china-yulin-dog-meat-festival-sales-bans-animals/

http://www.animalsaustralia.org/features/yulin-dog-eating-festival-to-begin.php

 

Can You Join Us in Lobbying PA State Lawmakers, April 24th, About Pending Humane-Related Laws?

One of 2017’s biggest days for animals and animal loving constituents in Pennsylvania is coming up – Humane Lobby Day!  This year’s event is Monday, April 24th from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Pennsylvania State Capitol Building, East Wing, Room 1, followed by a Humane PA happy hour and lunch!  Participants meet with lawmakers to inform them about pending humane laws and to ask for their vote. Please consider joining us. You’ll have an impact (lawmakers care about their constituents’ opinions) and be treated to a lunch/happy hour afterwards with like-minded people.

To register, please go to: Register for Humane Day PA

Please share this with your social channels and with your staff, volunteers and members!

Libre Law photo by Jennifer MacNeill

The Peace a Cat Lends to a Home


This photo of Gracie at the window on a snowy day gives me a sense of quiet, of peace. Maybe it’s the shades of blues of the late day light. Maybe it’s the warm comfort looking out on snow-draped trees, cup of tea in hand, the house quiet. Maybe its the stillness of the cat, observing.

Gracie sat at the window for some time, until the last bird departed the bird feeder, and then sauntered off, blinking her greeting to me as she passed by.

 

Gracie and the reversal of feline kidney disease

IMG_0862Gracie is an extraordinary being—calm, content, intelligent, and sweet-natured.  All this despite a rough beginning.  She came to us at eight months of age after having had a litter of kittens and being thrown from a car window by her forearm.

A man and woman found her and took her in while searching for a home for her.  Through a circuitous path, she came to us.  We’ve had her for thirteen years now.  She has been devoted and loving presence, almost Buddha-like, through moving more than once, kids, and a few rescue dogs and cats.  I love her completely.

Several years ago Gracie was diagnosed, as many cats are, with kidney disease—thought to be untreatable.  A savvy DVM  with alternative medicine training put Gracie on a Chinese herb (Ba Wei Di Huang Wan–see below), which improves blood flow to the kidneys (and therefore optimizes functioning of the undamaged parts of the kidney).  Much to the surprise of mainstream veterinarians, repeated blood work revealed that much of Gracie’s kidney disease was reversed, improving her prognosis beyond 6 months/1 year.  In addition, I also put her on low-phosphorus, low-sodium, high-protein (not low-protein) food. She regained weight and resumed a full life.  It’s been four years now, but she’s starting the inevitable decline. The herbs have done what they could.  I am resigned and heartbroken, grateful for the time we’ve had together and for her benevolent presence through these years, and I’m dreading the coming goodbye.  Gracie is nearby as I write this, snug and drifting in and out of sleep.

Info on herbal treatment of feline kidney disease:
Ba Wei Di Huang Wan ( https://www.google.com/search?q=ba+wei+di+huang+wan+1+g+buy&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8 )—500 mg. 2x/day or 1/4 teaspoon 2x a day— available online and through your vet via Natural Path Herb Company. I use the Natural Path ( http://www.nphc.ca/tips.php ) vet-ordered, high-quality version.  Gracie refused to eat it sprinkled on her food, so I bought size 4 empty vege capsules ( http://emptycaps.com/size-4-vegetarian-capsules-quantity-1000.html ) (larger-size capsules are difficult for cats to swallow) and an inexpensive capsule-making contraption that makes filling it relatively easy.  The effort has been worth Gracie’s quality life extension: https://www.herbaffair.com/cap-m-quik-capsule-filling-machine/