New bill seeks to ban fish factory farms in U.S. oceans!  »

Eat Drink Better brings us word on a new bill to ban fish factory farms in U.S. oceans! Let’s support the crap out of this mother!

The main text reads:

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, neither the Secretary of the Interior nor the Secretary of Commerce may issue any permit or in any other way authorize any person to conduct commercial finfish aquaculture operations in the Exclusive Economic Zone of the United States (as established by Proclamation Numbered 5030, dated March 10, 1983), except in accordance with a law authorizing such action that is enacted after the date of the enactment of this Act.

Of course, the rep. who proposed this is, Don Young, is from Alaska, who definitely has a vested interest in keeping competition out of the market. It’s not like it’s someone who gives a real shit about fish or our ocean’s waters.

You can read the complete thing here [.pdf].

Of course, the best thing you can do for fish and ocean health is to simply not eat fish. DERG. However, if you want to help slightly minimize the damage to both (and you do!), Eat Drink Better has the politicians to holler at about it.


Perez Hilton speaks out against Factory Farming! He says, “Whether you are a meat-eater or VEGAN you can stand behind animals in the meat trade.” That’s cool, but just go vegan. Then we won’t have an issue like factory farms, where animals are tortured and sexually abused (humans are the worst).

Florida and Iowa are trying to make undercover investigations of factory farms ILLEGAL! To which Perez, a Florida native responds “A citizen’s right to document cruelty to animals—wherever it occurs—is crucial to helping local, state, and federal officials enforce anti-cruelty laws. What we need are more cameras on factory farms, not fewer.”

I love celebrities who stand up for animals. I love them even more when they are VEGAN. I’m a pop culture whore. I don’t want to discuss how upset I am about boycotting Water for Elephants. The book is incredible! Robert Pattinson is the vamp of my dreams! Don’t try to tell me he’s not a vampire in real life, the conversation won’t go very well.


Guest post: Calling all California voters! Support SB 917!  »

[Olivia, celebrity pig!]

In 2004, a teenage girl witnessed the sale of potbellied piglets in a parking lot. Concerned, she approached the individual and inquired about the pigs. The man stated some were sold for pets, a couple for meat, and the last one would possibly be purchased by someone who would eventually eat her. Appalled, the girl implored the man to give her the piglet. Moved by her emotional response, he obliged, and the young woman left with a squirming, screaming pig.

Later, she and her parents called Animal Place and shared the story of the piglet. The sanctuary, already home to seven potbellied pigs, agreed to take in the animal. She was later named Olivia and is a crowd favorite at tours, with her rotund belly and drama-queen personality.

When the family asked us about the legalities of selling animals in parking lots, Animal Place explained it was allowed in California. In fact, animals can be sold alongside highways, at carnivals and boardwalks, and at any public right of way. There is no legal oversight or protection given to these animals.

In 2009, Animal Place, along with several other animal welfare organizations, worked with then-California state Assemblyman Ted Lieu to ban the practice of selling animals at flea markets and in parking lots. Unbeknown to us, there is a flea market coalition in California that apparently has more clout than an association of animal advocacy groups—the bill ended up failing.

But Mr. Lieu did not give up. This year, as a senator, he has introduced SB 917, which not only bans the sale of animals in certain areas but also tightens up the penalties for animal abuse. The bill would prohibit puppies and kittens from being sold out of boxes in supermarket parking lots. It would stop the practice of selling amphibians, reptiles and other species alongside highways and streets. It is sadly ridiculous that this law needs to be introduced at all—every city and county should have already banned these practices in the state.

It exempts livestock auctions, 4-H/FFA events, public/private animal shelters, state/county/city fairs, and live animal markets. Which is great for shelters, so they can continue offering meet and greets for adoptable animals, not so great for farmed animals and smaller animals who will still be sold with no legal protection at auctions and flea markets, but it’s a great start to solving a serious animal welfare problem.

Passing a bill is no easy task, and this bill will face its own hurdles. Californians can help by voicing their support for SB 917—that is a very simple thing to do!

If you can only write one letter or make one phone call, make sure to contact Senator Lieu and thank him for introducing SB 917, providing such basic, commonsense protections to the animals:

The Honorable Ted Lieu
State Capitol, Room 4090
Sacramento, CA, 95814

Phone: (916) 651-4028. All you need to say is that you are a registered California voter and want to express your support of SB 917, done!

Want to make more of an impact? ContactPublic Safety Committee Chair Senator Loni Hancock and urge her support of SB 917:

The Honorable Loni Hancock
State Capitol, Room 2082
Sacramento, CA  9581

The first hearing for SB 917 is scheduled for Apr. 12, so get your letters and phone calls in soon! It’s so easy to make a difference for animals, all you need to do is pen a short letter or make a brief phone call! Olivia thanks you—but only if you give her vegan cupcakes first.

Marji Beach is the ridiculously awesome Education Manager for Animal Place. She’s super smart, so you should listen to her.


New York City Council bans excessive dog-chaining!  »

On Jan. 17 in New York City, the City Council passed two new pieces of legislation. One new law prohibits chaining a dog outdoors for more than three hours continuously in a 12-hour period. The penalty is up to $500 or three months in jail. Booyah! Three hours already seems like quite a bit of time to chain a dog outside, but still, this is a good step forward. It also prohibits chains that are too heavy, and choke collars. Yay! I made the mistake of watching Animal Cops the other day and a dog they rescued had been tied with a chain from a tow truck that was so heavy it had cut into his neck. I can’t watch that show! But yeah, heavy chains cause a lot of damage and pain.

Mayor Bloomberg still has to sign the legislation, but it was voted through the council 47 to one, so he would be a dick not to. 

The city also raised the license fee for an unaltered dog from $11.50 to $34; the extra money is going to programs that deal with overpopulation This is more encouragement to spay or neuter—not that ANYONE gets their dog licensed. OMJesus, when I first got Figgy in Philly, I was freaking out trying to get his license before the 60-day period after I adopted him. Then I find out NO ONE I knew had licensed their dog! In Philly, you’re supposed to reapply every year for an un-fixed dog, but you can get a lifetime license if your dog is both neutered and microchipped. That was cool. I never got Fig licensed in San Francisco but I was thinking it was OK since he was licensed in Philly? But it probably doesn’t really work like a driver’s license.

I’m not positive anyone in NYC actually gets a dog license but the few that do will be have to pay more now if they don’t spay or neuter their pup. So that’s good. The anti-dog chaining win is pretty great! Hopefully in the future they will make the allotted time shorter and shorter. Go dogs!

[photo from]



“ I’m not happy that I ate dog. But I’m happy China eats dog. It so proclaims both a particularity to be prized in a homogenizing world and its rationality. Anyone who doesn’t want China to eat dog must logically embrace pigs as pets. „

That’s New York Times opinion columnist Roger Cohen on eating dog in China (we reported earlier in the week about the law proposal to ban the eating of dogs and cats in China).

I’d argue that the person who doesn’t want China to eat dogs must logically NOT EAT OTHER ANIMALS. You don’t have to embrace a pig as a pet, you just have to recognize that pigs are smarter than dogs and if you can’t even do that much, at least acknowledge that they lead horrific lives and terrifying deaths. That’s where logic should get you. One of my favorite parts about Eating Animals is when Foer suggests that if we really gave a shit about sustainability, we would eat the millions of animals that are killed in our nation’s shelters each year. Real Talk.

I love how a lot of commenters (note to self: DON’T READ COMMENTS EVER) are totally all, “Oh I’d eat fluffy! Dish it up!” It’s like, okay go to the shelter, adopt a dog, and then murder it with your carving knife. Then skin, debone, and fry him or her up. What you’ll be doing is still a lot more humane than how it goes down right now in China.

Now, for me, I don’t want to deal with any of that shit and that’s why I choose to be vegan. The rest of you, enjoy Fido!


No dogs in the kitchen!  »

The New York Times and the Times of London are reporting that there is a law proposal in the works over in China that would ban the eating of cats and dogs. Oh happy day! Now ads like the above will make sense in Chinese!

From the Times of London:

In what would be China’s first law against animal abuse, anyone caught eating cat or dog meat would face a fine of as much as 5,000 yuan (£450) and up to 15 days in jail. Organisations involved in the sale of either meat could be fined between 10,000 and 500,000 yuan. A draft law is expected to be sent to parliament, the National People’s Congress, in April, according to state media.

I know, right? The FIRST law against animal abuse! Yowza, this is a big deal! I checked Wikipedia and it’s reporting the same thing: no current laws against animal cruelty in China. I guess the stuff with tigers isn’t about cruelty.

Another interesting bit: apparently cat meat isn’t as popular as dog meat because some people believe the cat “will return at night to wreak revenge.” HO DAMN! That reminds me of this scary song my dad used to sing at my elementary school, “The Cat Came Back.” It’s about this guy trying to get rid of his cat but it keeps coming back to haunt the guy and scare my third grade class. SPOOKY!

Now, I’m not really down with making some silly animal hierarchy about who’s better or worse to eat, but at the same time, I love my dog and cat! So I must rejoice! Also, if this legislation gets passed and is the first anti-cruelty law, it would be a pretty big deal for all animals in China!

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