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To understand the true agenda of this enormous animal rights organization, HSUS, one needs to examine the beliefs of its leaders, not the slick media ads for donations that claim to be for animal welfare. The HSUS agenda is not much different than that of PETA, only the tactics used separate these two groups. Make no mistake, the ultimate goal is to end human use and contact with animals.

Below is a timeline of HSUS events, programs, conflicts, quotes, and legislative efforts that shows HSUS is far from the mainstream organization they strive to portray.

1954 Cleveland Amory, Fred Myers (AHA), Helen Jones (ASPCA) form the National Humane Society (later re-named HSUS) to focus on fighting biomedical research use of animals. (1)
1959 Cleveland Amory assists with incorporating National Catholic Humane Society which later became the International Society for Animal Rights.
1967 Cleveland Amory forms the Fund for Animals to focus on opposition to hunting.
1972 HSUS first ballot initiative victory - South Dakota dove hunting ban (2)
1973 HSUS builds National Association for Humane Environmental Education (NAHEE) to ensure that "humane attitudes" become part of mainstream education. NAHEE plans to prepare its own materials for distribution in classrooms. The main publication is Kind News published at three reading levels. Kind News passively indoctrinates the reader against hunting and trapping, use of animals in research, in zoos, and rodeos. (A), (B), (C), HSUS Mission Humane Action Guide for Kids
1976 Michael Fox joins HSUS in 1976. Fox serves as a senior scholar and vice president of the organization, and director of HSUS-affiliate Center for Respect of Life and Environment. According to Fox, "Human beings aren't superior, we're just different.." (3)
1980 In Animal Rights and Human Obligations, the published proceedings of the HSUS 1980 national membership conference, HSUS states unequivocally that "there is no rational basis for maintaining a moral distinction between the treatment of humans and other animals." (4)
1986 HSUS director of laboratory welfare, John McArdle, opines that "HSUS is definitely shifting in the direction of animal rights faster than anyone would realize from our literature". HSUS president John Hoyt states that "this new [animal rights] philosophy has served as a catalyst in the shaping of our own philosophies, policies, and goals."
1988 HSUS launches its "Shame of Fur" campaign which runs until 1991 (5) (6)
1988 HSUS introduces "Breakfast of Cruelty" campaign. Slogan: "Behind virtually every slice of bacon and every innocuous looking egg lurks a long, hidden history of unbearable suffering." (7)
1990 Pet spay/neuter campaign Guess Who Pays? poster features a living puppy sitting in front of euthanized dogs and cats. Message reads, "When you let your pet bring unwanted animals into the world ... guess who pays." Begins a long line of campaigns linking and blaming dog breeders for pet overpopulation. (8)
1990 HSUS wins California ballot measure to prohibit sport hunting of mountain lions. Wayne Pacelle issues anti-hunting warning, "We are going to use the ballot box and the democratic process to stop all hunting in the United States ... We will take it species by species until all hunting is stopped in California. Then we will take it state by state. (Full Cry, October 1990).
1990 HSUS fundraising mailer, "Rights For Animals" makes a case for animals to have access to the courts through their advocates through the expansion of "standing" doctrines and the right of third parties to sue. (9)
1991 Pacelle quoted in the press, "If we could shut down all sport hunting in a moment, we would. Just like we would shut down all dog fighting, all cock fighting or all bull fighting." Pacelle continues to deny this statement. quoted in Kingman Daily Miner (10)
1991 Ontario Court of Justice judge Bruce C. Hawkins on January 7 issues an interim order that the HSUS must repay $740,000 to the Humane Society of Canada, in advance of the yet-to-be-scheduled trial of a lawsuit in which HSC and the Canadian incorporation of Humane Society International charge that HSUS improperly seized $1,012,663 in funds HSC raised within Canada. (11)
1991 "Until There Are None, Adopt One" Campaign launched. "Choose a Pal for Life". When you decide to bring a pet into your life, give a shelter animal a home. Don't go to a pet store. Don't go to a breeder. Choose to save a life. Until there are no more healthy animals dying in our shelters, adopt a shelter pet. HSUS continues campaign that full shelters result from dog breeding rather than owner retention issues. (12)
1992 Wins Colorado ballot measure to prohibit spring, bait, and hound hunting of black bears
1992 HSUS publishes Close-Up Report. Loved-or Lost? Calls for a voluntary moratorium on all breeding of dogs and cats in order to end the pet over-population crisis. (12)
1992 HSUS wins a joint lawsuit with the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF)against the U.S. Department of Agriculture to extend coverage under the provisions of the Animal Welfare Act to include mice, rats, and birds used in laboratories. In 1994, this ruling was overturned by a federal appeals court (13)
1993 HSUS publishes Taking a Crucial Step to Help Dogs And Cats. Paul Irwin announces the campaign at a press conference, "The HSUS is calling for a temporary moratorium on the breeding of dogs and cats. This means everyone-pet owners, shelter workers, and even professional breeders-must stop allowing animals to breed until this [overpopulation] crisis has passed." HSUS says spay/neuter is the best way to prevent breeding. The HSUS states it has prepared legislative guidelines, including the enactment of breeding moratoria, mandatory sterilization laws, and other animal-control ordinances at the local and state level , and will work anyone wishing to initiate legislation. (12)
1993 When asked if he envisioned a future without pets, "If I had my personal view, perhaps that might take hold. In fact, I don't want to see another dog or cat born." Wayne Pacelle quoted in Bloodties: Nature, Culture and the Hunt by Ted Kerasote, 1993, p. 266.
1994 Wins Arizona ballot measure to prohibit steel jawed traps and other body-gripping traps and Oregon ballot measure to ban bear baiting and hound hunting of mountain lions
1994 Manager Billy Saxon at Fund for Animals' Black Beauty Ranch "sanctuary" near Tyler, Texas caught breeding "rescued" animals purchased at livestock auctions and selling the offspring for slaughter. "Fund For Animals' Wayne Pacelle acknowledged that he had been aware of the cattle-raising business for some time but said he had kept Saxon on because of his fine work at the ranch (14)
1996 Wins Washington ballot measure to ban bear baiting and hound hunting of bears, cougars, bobcats, and lynx and Colorado ballot measure to ban leghold traps
1998 Wins California ballot measure to prohibit slaughter of horses and sale of horse meat for human consumption
1999 HSUS Senior Director Paul Shapiro (then the president of Compassion Over Killing) climbs atop a McDonald's restaurant and urges lunchgoers: "Don't Support McMurder. Go Vegan." (15)
2001 HSUS Puppy Protection Act (PPA) introduced in Congress by Sen. Rick Santorum. The PPA required USDA/APHIS to set breeding regulations, establish socialization standards for commercial and retail breeders, and implement a "three strikes you're out" policy of enforcement for license revocation. Bill is opposed by multiple groups including research institutions. (16)
2002 Wins Florida ballot measure to ban gestation crates for pigs. In the process, pigs gain constitutional rights in Florida; the 2 existing hog farms shut down sending their stock to slaughter (17)
2003 HSUS Puppy Protection Act (PPA) introduced in Congress by Sen. Rick Santorum. The 2003 PPA eliminated the criteria for socialization standards in hopes of lessening resistance to passage but still required USDA/APHIS licensing and regulation of retail breeders, again setting precedent for federal inspectors to enforce cleaning, sanitation, handling, and other regulatory requirements in private homes. (18)
2003 The Fund for Animals (merged the following year with HSUS) files sweeping anti-hunting lawsuit to stop hunting on 39 wildlife refuges. (A), (B), (C) In April 2011, federal Judge James S. Gwin ruled for sportsmen across America rejecting HSUS' attempt at using the National Environmental Policy Act to close hunting on these refuges. (D), (E)
2004 HSUS and Fund for Animals merge and launch a new 501(c)(4) political organization, the HSUS Fund for Animals, to allow for a more substantial investment of resources in political and lobbying activities.
2004 Wayne Pacelle, former executive director of The Fund for Animals, named President and CEO of HSUS. Pacelle announces the new "campaigns section" will focus on farm animals, puppy mills, and "wildlife abuse" (formerly anti-hunting). (19)
2004 Wayne Pacelle, CEO, Humane Society of the US (HSUS), as quoted in the London Times, December 26, 2004. "The entire animal rights movement in the United States reacted with unfettered glee at the Ban in England ...We view this act of parliament as one of the most important actions in the history of the animal rights movement. This will energize our efforts to stop hunting with hounds."
2005 Following Hurricane Katrina, HSUS raises $34 million in donations. Louisiana attorney general begins investigation into distribution of the monies collected. Louisiana's Attorney General ended the 18-month-long investigation into where most of these millions went, shortly after HSUS announced its plan to contribute $600,000 toward the construction of an animal shelter on the grounds of a state prison. (20)
2005 HSUS Pet Animal Welfare Statute (PAWS) introduced in Congress by Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) and Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-PA6) on behalf of HSUS. PAWS required USDA/APHIS regulation of retail breeders and sellers, including rescue organizations, based on sales of 25 or more annually. This enormous and costly expansion of federal regulation initiated preliminary negotiations to amend PAWS with a scheme to outsource inspections. (21)
2005 Animal Protection Litigation Section formed within HSUS, "dedicated to the process of researching, preparing, and prosecuting animal protection lawsuits in state and federal court." (22), (23)
2005 HSUS successfully lobbies Congress to strip USDA funding for horse meat inspections which will force closure of remaining horse processing plants. (24) , (25)
2006 Campaigns Manager of Compassion Over Killing (COK), Paul Shapiro joins HSUS staff as manager of their new Factory Farming Campaign. Goals within the campaign: continue the No Battery Cage effort; create an HSUS Guide to Vegetarian Eating; reach out to other social movements to gain as much support as possible. (26)
2006 HSUS wins Arizona ballot measure to ban gestation crates, veal crates
2007 On behalf of HSUS, Sen. Dick Durbin (D, IL) attaches S.A. 3723 to the 2007 Farm Bill. The amendment is nearly identical to PAWS and was stripped from the FB in conference committee. (27)
2007 At the ALDF The Future of Animal Law Conference, Sara Amundson, executive director, Humane Society Legislative Fund and former lobbyist for Doris Day Animal League, presents a plan for a central United States Animal Protection Agency. The agency would provide a single area to lobby for support of animal rights initiatives. (28)
2007 Pacelle blogs that HSUS was "working with federal authorities from the start, and assisting with the care of 52 dogs taken from Vick's property." HSUS uses photos of the Michael Vick dogs in another fundraising scam. The pitch for money ended quickly when HSUS was exposed. HSUS was not caring for the dogs and, in fact, was lobbying to have them killed. (29)
2008 HSUS issues a 100-point Change Agenda for Animals to the newly elected Obama administration. The agenda includes an Animal Protection Liaison in the White House and an Animal Protection Division in the Justice Department - similar to the plan outlined in 2007. (30)
2008 Wins California ballot initiative to ban gestation crates, veal crates, and battery cages and wins Massachusetts ballot measure to ban greyhound racing
2008 Virginia "historic puppy mill" regulation with ownership caps signed into law. HSUS launches state puppy mill bill campaigns. Between 2008 and 2011 the packaged bill to control and restrict dog breeding was introduced in 34 states. (31)
2008 HSUS merges with The Association of Veterinarians for Animal Rights (AVAR) to form Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association (HSVMA). Directions, Summer 2004, Newsletter of the Association of Veterinarians for Animal Rights noted AVAR does not support any breeding of cats or dogs, be it by AKC affiliates or any other breeders, while millions of animals are being killed each year due to overpopulation. (32)
2009 WSB-TV in Atlanta aired a groundbreaking expose of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), the U.S. animal rights industry's richest and most deceptive fundraiser. HSUS. An enraged HSUS worked diligently, threatening lawsuits against those posting the video. The video is only available now on an Iranian website.
2009 HSUS directors testify in court that the pit bulls seized in Wilkes County NC must be destroyed because they had been "bred for generations to be aggressive." Based on the HSUS "expert testimony" 145 dogs - including nursing puppies born after the seizure - were euthanized. (33), (33A)
2009 Story of fundraising deceit by HSUS goes viral. HSUS uses 'Fay' a disfigured pit bull rescued in a huge dog fighting ring bust as a fundraising tool. JP Goodwin states, 'Faye' is now safe, in a loving home, recovering thanks to HSUS. The woman fostering Fay responded publicly that HSUS had not spent one dime on Fay. In response to the publicity and criticism, HSUS announced they would send $5,000 to cover needed surgery for Fay. HSUS reported that it raised $1.2 million from the “Animal Survivors Fund” campaign. Fay passed away on 12/28/09 after completing one of her needed surgeries. HSUS continued to feature images of the dog on its Web site and fundraising materials through January 2010. (34)
2010 HSUS markets "Humane Choice" vegetarian dog food to help "combat factory farm cruelty". Apparently HSUS feels some justification to extend their ideology to dog diets without concern that vegetarian diets are biologically inappropriate for carnivores. Production ended in 2012.
2010 Wins Missouri ballot measure to regulate "puppy mills". Missouri legislature modifies the extreme regulation of dog breeders called for in the measure. (35)
2010 Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act (PUPS) introduced by Rep. James Gerlach [PA-6; Senator Richard Durbin [IL] on behalf of HSUS. Once again under the guise of regulating "puppy mills" and "closing a loophole", a new class of "high volume sellers" is created within the AWA. Retail sellers, including rescue organizations and animal shelters, would be regulated based on sales of 50 or more dogs annually and interest in an intact breeding female. A damaging report issued by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) citing multiple enforcement inadequacies within APHIS and errors in judgment by APHIS personnel while performing inspections of currently licensed dog breeders is touted by HSUS and backers as a reason to exponentially expand the duties and scope of APHIS with this legislation. (36)
2010 IRS begins preliminary audit protocol to investigate the lobbying activities of HSUS; assigns Case File Number (29-92012). The Department of the Treasury's Office of the Inspector General for Tax Administration (OIG) also assigned a Case File Number (55-1005-0025-C). (37)
2011 March. The American Institute of Philanthropy (AIP) issues a "D" grade to HSUS's financial practices. AIP's rating system heavily penalizes charities for possessing large assets or maintaining more than three years' operating expenses in reserve (38)
2011 Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-PA) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) re-introduce Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act (PUPS) 2011 on behalf of HSUS. PUPS changes the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and USDA responsibility forever by granting authority for federal regulation to extend beyond commercial dog businesses and into private homes. (39)
2011 Years after HSUS legislation closed U.S. horse slaughter plants, U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) releases Horse Welfare report. Reports that plant closures have shifted the slaughter horse market to Canada and Mexico and driven down the sale prices of lower-grade horses. Plant closures have also worsened an already bad welfare situation by forcing horses to travel long distances to slaughter, often in unregulated trips. (24)
2011 HSUS brokers deal with United Egg Producers to introduce federal legislation for enriched cages, egg carton labeling, and other standards. As part of the deal HSUS agrees to end its ballot initiatives in Washington and Oregon. (40)
2011 U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and David Vitter (R-LA), long time supporters of HSUS and its agenda, go to bat yet again for this radical animal rights group. In October 2011, Durbin and Vitter wrote to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to urge USDA to amend the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) through regulatory action, rather than requiring congressional action.
2012 Rep. Kurt Schrader (OR) introduces HR 3798 Egg Products Inspection Act which would codify the HSUS-UEP egg deal, remove best management practices, and establish federal regulations across the board for all producers. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (CA) introduces Senate companion bill, S.3239. Pacelle gains promise from Sen. Debbie Stabenow (MI) to introduce the bill as an amendment to the Farm Bill in Conference Committee. The far reaching bill covers all egg products, not merely shelled eggs.
2012 Following HSUS petition to Congress, APHIS posts a Notice of Rulemaking to revise the long standing exemption from federal licensing of pet sellers in the retail sector. All pet breeders who have five or more intact females, or anyone who sells pets off premise will be required to obtain a USDA license and come into compliance with the Animal Welfare Act. (41)
2012 HSUS lobbies Connecticut legislature for "farm animal rights" calling for a ban on gestation crates even though they are not used in the state. (42)
2012 The most severe anti-hunting legislation ever passed into California law, SB 1221 was sponsored by HSUS, and authored by Senator Ted Lieu (D/28th-Torrance) and Senate President Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg (D/06th-Sacramento). In addition to prohibiting the hunting of bears and bobcats with hounds, SB 1221 prohibits "pursuing, running or chasing" any bear or bobcat with any dog at any time. Further, the bill expressly clarifies the Department of Fish and Game's ability to "capture or dispatch" any dog inflicting injury or even threatening to inflict injury on any bear or bobcat at any time.
2013 Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-PA) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) re-introduce Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act (PUPS) 2013 on behalf of HSUS. PUPS changes the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and USDA responsibility forever by granting authority for federal regulation to extend beyond commercial dog businesses and into private homes. (43)
2013 HSUS files a class action lawsuit against Perdue Farms. (44) The lawsuit alleges that the standards upon which Perdue bases its "Humanely Raised" claim are not meaningfully different from the so-called "Animal Welfare Guidelines" of the National Chicken Council. In October, HSUS filed a second suit in Florida against Perdues Humanely Raised claim for raising Harvestland Chicken. (45)
2013 HSUS lobbying scores in California with a bill that bans trapping of bobcats. California also became the first state requiring sport hunters to use lead-free ammunition.
2013 US District Court dismissed a lawsuit filed by HSUS which challenged USDA's approval of the National Pork Board's purchase of the "Pork: The Other White Meat" marketing slogan. The lawsuit was filed in 2012. (46)
2013 Judge orders animal rights groups, including Fund for Animals (now merged with HSUS) to reimburse Feld Entertainment for attorney fees. While HSUS was not held liable, Judge Emmet G. Sullivan left open the question of whether HSUS could be included at a later date if Feld chose to re-argue that portion of the case. (47) HSUS is co-defendant along with the Fund for Animals, Animal Welfare Institute, Animal Protection Institute United with Born Free USA, Tom Rider and the attorneys involved in a RICO suit filed by Feld Entertainment. (48)
2013 HSUS successfully lobbies APHIS administration to finalize the Retail Pet Seller Rule. The final rule expanding USDA/APHIS regulatory authority is announced September 18, 2013. For the first time federal inspectors will enter private American homes in order to set government standards for pet care. APHIS maintains that because of the wide variety of situations, they will need to make case-by-case decisions regarding licensure. (49)
2014 HSUS and several co-defendants, who were involved in legal cases against Feld Entertainment Inc.’s Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus for 14 years over the care of its elephants, paid a settlement of $15.75 million to them today. This comes from a separate Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) lawsuit filed by Feld after it was discovered that a key witness in the original trial who had been a handler for the circus had been paid off to provide false testimony.
2014 HSUS begins campaign in Maine to end use of dogs and traps for bear hunting. HSUS vows to spend $3 million to win a Ballot Initiative. In the last 10 years Maine’s bear population has increased by 30% to more than 30,000 bears in response to declining hunter numbers and harvest. To stabilize bear numbers at levels desired by a diverse public, an annual harvest of between 3,500 and 4,500 bears is needed. HSUS-supported restrictions will interfere with objectives to stabilize bear population growth. (50)
2014 Charity Navigator removes HSUS rating and replaces it with a Donor Advisory as a result of the Feld Entertainment suit. "Charity Navigator has determined that the nature of this/these issue(s) warrants making this information available so that donors may determine for themselves whether such information is relevant to their decision whether to contribute to this organization." Read the full Donor Advisory (51)

Tags HSUS anti-hunting, anti-research, HSUS animal rights agenda, HSUS Ballot Initiatives

Animal Rights and Animal Welfare are not interchangeable

Animal Welfare supports humane treatment and use of animals and believes that humans have a responsibility for their care. Animal Rights (AR) is a radical belief that attempts to elevate animals to equality with humans and calls for an end to all traditional uses of animals, such as use of animals for food or clothing.


Changing the way the law treats pets and the people who care for them from ownership to guardianship raises many questions about how pets will be cared for in the future. If pet owners today become, under new legislation, pet guardians, a number of things could happen:

Animal rights organizations or meddling neighbors could petition courts for custody of your pet if they don't approve of the way you care for your pet.

The treatment options you and your veterinarian decide on could be challenged by the local animal rights organization or other self-appointed experts.

It could be illegal to spay or neuter a pet because it deprives them of their "reproductive rights."

Veterinarians and pet guardians could be sued for providing what another individual might regard as inadequate care.

Guardianship laws also could have negative consequences for animal care and control organizations, which already have limited resources. They could be forced to deal with changes in euthanasia policies, increased responsibility for investigating animal abuse charges or responsibility for monitoring guardians.

It's important to understand that the attempt to replace ownership with guardianship is part of a broader agenda sought primarily by some animal rights activists. For them, this change is the first step toward placing animals on the same legal plane as people, and they see that step as more important than the fact that such changes will significantly reduce the rights and choices currently available to pet owners to provide for and protect their pets.

Pets are important and valued companions. That's why laws that protect pets from abuse are already on the books. Changing the laws to refer to pets in the same way we refer to family will not provide further protection to pets, but rather will limit the ability of pet owners to make decisions about the care and treatment of their pet.

Reproduced by courtesy of the Animal Health Institute (AHI)

AVMA policy Ownership vs Guardianship

Terminology Describing the Relationship Between Animals and Their Owners
(Oversight: CHAB; EB 05/2003; TF Legal Status of Animals-EB Revised 04/2005; reaffirmed 04/2010)

The American Veterinary Medical Association promotes the optimal health and welfare of animals. Further, the AVMA recognizes the role of responsible owners in providing for their animals' care. Any change in terminology describing the relationship between animals and owners, including "guardian," does not strengthen this relationship and may, in fact, harm it. Such changes in terminology may adversely affect the ability of society to obtain and deliver animal services and, ultimately, result in animal suffering.

In Defense of Dog Breeders
How Animal Rights Has Twisted Our Language

AVMA: Mandatory Spay/Neuter a Bad Idea

HSUS is not your guardian of animals

Shelter Hoarding

A Gathering Storm
Big things often come from small beginnings
By Dr. Carmen L. Battaglia

"This is a continuation of last month's discussion of the gathering storm and how it has already begun to impact the world of purebred dogs. The winds that are fueling this storm were identified as the undefined labels that are used by the animal rights movement. As stated in Part I, their efforts have gained wide-spread acceptance among the breeders which in turn have impacted AKC registrations and the gene pools of thirty-five breeds some of which may soon be facing extinction. Related to all of this is the fact that hardly anyone is noticing how effective and dangerous this storm has become. As discussed in Part I, there are many examples that show how, through the use of undefined labels, the animal rights movement has negatively impacted breeding and registrations.

The REAL Facts Re: HSUS
Contrary to what most people think, the real facts about HSUS is far different than what is displayed in countless TV ads and pamphlets and flyers that are distributed on a national basis. We at CFODC have been involved in trying to stem the tide of HSUS funded attempts to completely do away with any contact whatsoever between humans and animals for whatever purpose. See http://humanewatch.org/images/uploads/2010-06_NOT_YOUR_LOCAL_HUMANE_SOCIETY.pdf

I urge you to read this article thoroughly and support whatever organization that is involved in trying to maintain the human/animal interaction and bond. Our heartfelt thanks to Humane Watch for keeping us all informed about HSUS and its goals. Judythe Coffman President

Whiney Wayne's Action Plan to Raise More Money,
We Need To Do The Same

Shape up breeders, big brother is watching you!!

The Endangered Owner

American Sporting Dog Alliance

The Power of Language

HSUS 100 point change agenda - The Change Agenda for Animals


Anatomy of Breed Specific Legislation
By Dr. Carmen Battaglia

"Blowing stuff up and smashing windows" is "a great way to bring about animal liberation."
— Bruce Friedrich, a People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals vice president, 2001
“Did we euthanize some animals who could have been adopted? Maybe.”
— PETA's Domestic Animal Issues & Abuse Department director Daphna Nachminovitch, in The Virginian-Pilot

“In the end, I think it would be lovely if we stopped this whole notion of pets altogether.”
— Newsday, Feb 1988 Ingrid Newkirk

“The bottom line is that people don't have the right to manipulate or to breed dogs and cats... If people want toys, they should buy inanimate objects. If they want companionship, they should seek it with their own kind.”
— Animals, 5/1/93 Ingrid Newkirk

“I wish we all would get up and go into the labs and take the animals out or burn them down.”
— "National Animal Rights Convention", 6/27/97 Ingrid Newkirk

“We have no ethical obligation to preserve the different breeds of livestock produced through selective breeding ...One generation and out. We have no problems with the extinction of domestic animals. They are creations of human selective breeding.”
— Animal People News, 5/1/93 Wayne Pacelle

“Our goal is to get sport hunting in the same category as cock fighting and dog fighting.”
— Bozeman (MT) Daily Chronicle, 10/8/91 Wayne Pacelle

“Arson, property destruction, burglary, and theft are ‘acceptable crimes’ when used for the animal cause.”
— PETA co-founder Alex Pacheco lists the “acceptable” tactics to fight for animal rights, Associated Press

“We feel that animals have the same rights as a retarded human child because they are equal mentally in terms of dependence on others.”
— The New York Times, Jan 1989 Alex Pacheco

“You can justify, from a political standpoint, any type of violence you want to use.”
— Jerry Vlasak on "Penn & Teller: Bullsh*t!" (Showtime cable network)

“I don’t think you’d have to kill -- assassinate -- too many ... I think for 5 lives, 10 lives, 15 human lives, we could save a million, 2 million, 10 million non-human lives.”
— Jerry Vlasak at the "Animal Rights 2003" convention, advocating the murder of doctors whose life-saving biomedical experiments require the use of animals.

“I don’t have a hands-on fondness for animals…To this day I don’t feel bonded to any non-human animal. I like them and I pet them and I’m kind to them, but there’s no special bond between me and other animals.”
— Wayne Pacelle, HSUS President, quoted in ‘Bloodties’ by Ted Kerasote, 1993, p. 251


Permission kindly granted by Walt Hutchens of  http://pet-law.com/  to reproduce this article.

What is ‘Animal Rights’
...and why should you care?

This article is also in the Future of Dogs section. It is the first thing you should read if you are new to Pet-Law or to the fight to protect the rights of pet owners. Please visit the Articles section for more information.

Imagine that some people think we humans just aren’t good enough to own or use animals. In fact they’re so convinced of this that they have formed large organizations that work tirelessly around the clock and around the world to eliminate animal farming, eating of meat, use of animals in research, hunting, circuses, zoos, and yes, as pets.
This isn’t just a bad dream -- it’s real. Those people are called the ‘animal rights’ movement. While there probably aren’t more than a thousand people in the U.S. who accept the whole idea -- that humans should be completely separated from our animals even if that means that many species become extinct -- they are supported by many more who support important parts of the movement.

For example many believe that eating meat is wrong. Some think that medical research using animals is unnecessary and cruel. Other thousands believe most pet owners are irresponsible. And it is those people, the ones who support small parts of animal rights, who are carrying the movement forward.

This is America: It is our right to believe whatever we want and to try to convince others of what we believe. However the AR movement goes beyond that. The biggest thing they do is pass laws that make animal use, breeding, and ownership steadily harder and more costly.

happens in several steps:

1. They invent problems or magnify small ones. The real problems generally are much less than the good that comes from the same activity but what we are told about is only the problem.

For example: “Hunting is cruel and unnecessary” -- never mind that for many species hunting is a main way of controlling population to prevent starvation and other problems.

“‘Pet overpopulation’ leads to the tragedy of euthanasia” -- although the animal shelter euthanasia rate has been falling steadily for decades, is probably now only 10-15% of what it was 30 years ago and many areas of the country now actually have a shortage of dogs.

“Pet breeders are just exploiting animals for money” -- although if there were no breeders there would be no pets, and it’s almost impossible to make money if you breed as a hobby.

“Animals are dangerous and cause human health problems” -- though most of us have pets, serious problems are rare and study after study shows that pet owners are happier, have lower stress levels, and may live longer than other people.

“Animal farming is cruelty” -- though cruelty is already illegal and the practices being attacked are ancient and often inspected and specifically approved by the government.

The attack will always fall where most people will say “Oh -- that’s not something I do” or “That’s not important.” Only 7% of the population hunts, something like 2% farms, and much less than 1% breeds dogs at home. Because many important animal practices are unfamiliar to most of us, we may not see what’s wrong with these AR campaigns.

2. The animal rightists batter public officials to ‘solve’ these problems. Although they are a small minority, they never stop complaining.

Los Angeles, for example, is on its fourth well qualified animal control director in five years. Why? Because no director delivered the ‘no kill’ shelter they demand -- an unattainable goal for a properly run municipal shelter in a large city. The shelter’s statistics are not bad and they are improving rapidly -- but that’s not good enough.

3. When officials say “Okay, tell us what to do,” the ARs are there with examples of laws passed in other places. They cite misleading or phoney statistics, even outright lies about the success of the law and if pressed on the issue, simply repeat their views.

For example when they’re proclaiming “horrible pet overpopulation” they promote laws requiring all pets to be spayed or neutered and requirements for hobby breeders to get expensive licenses and permits. “This law was a big success in San Mateo County,” they say.

If you tell them “This law did not work in San Mateo County” they say “This law was a big success in San Mateo.”

If you answer “But the shelter euthanasia numbers went UP in San Mateo” they say “This law was a big success in San Mateo.”

Surprisingly, when the subject is unfamilar, the bigger the lie, the more likely people are to believe it. This ‘big lie’ tactic isn't often encountered by lawmakers and since doing independent research is time-consuming for them, they usually end by accepting the lies.

4. Since the new laws never solve the ‘problem,’ the ARs seek greater punishments and new laws that will help enforce the old ones, such as a requirement for all pets to be microchipped with the numbers in a government database. They talk only of the good effects -- “This will help more lost pets get home” -- although the real purpose is to catch people who are violating their other laws.

They can nearly always find important organizations that will support the proposal because (for example) “Veterinarians can’t be against a law that just improves enforcement of something that’s already the law.” (Quote from legislative liaison of the Virginia Veterinary Medical Association when the VVMA supported an animal rights bill requiring veterinarians to report rabies vaccinations -- with owner's name and address, breed, spay/neuter status, etc to county treasurers.)

5. As one law becomes common, the next step begins -- go back to #1, above.


Here are some quotes from leaders in the AR movement:

Ingrid Newkirk, president and co-founder of PETA: “I am not a morose person, but I would rather not be here. I don’t have any reverence for life, only for the entities themselves. I would rather see a blank space where I am. This will sound like fruitcake stuff again but at least I wouldn’t be harming anything.”

Michael W. Fox, Scientific Director and former Vice President of HSUS: “Man is the most dangerous, destructive, selfish, and unethical animal on earth.”

"Les U. Knight" (pseudonym), "Voluntary Human Extinction," Wild Earth, Vol. 1,
No. 2 “If you haven’t given voluntary human extinction much thought before, the idea of a world with no people in it may seem strange. But, if you give it a chance, I think you might agree that the extinction of Homo sapiens would mean survival for millions, if not billions, of Earth-dwelling species ... Phasing out the human race will solve every problem on earth, social and environmental.”

Wayne Pacelle, President of HSUS: "One generation and out. We have no problem with the extinction of domestic animals. They are creations of human selective breeding."


This is sick stuff: The truth is that animal rights is mental illness masquerading as philosophy.

There are no longer any nationally known organizations that just want good care for animals; from 1980-on, they were all taken over by animal rights zealots who continue to operate them under the "animal welfare" banner.

Today, HSUS, PETA, the ASPCA and dozens of less familiar organizations spend about $200 million a year sent by people who want to help animals, working against animal ownership. Never give money to any of these organizations! If you want to give to help animals, give directly to your local animal shelter: they nearly always use contributions to provide real care, and they always need more than they get.

What’s going on is a quiet, mostly non-violent war for the future of America. The major battles are just starting and will be fought and won by one side or the other over the next five to 10 years. For example, between the end of 2005 and mid-2006, Long Beach California, Los Angeles County, and Albuquerque, New Mexico all passed new laws making it much more difficult to own and breed pets. Each of these new laws was in turn the worst ever seen in the U.S. and we are likely to see yet worse in the months ahead.

If those who believe that humans and animals belong together don’t turn the tide, then 20 years from now our country will have many fewer good pets and will be less happy and less prosperous than it is today. None of us asked for this war, but if we do not fight and win, the losses to future generations won’t be undone in a century.

Walt Hutchens
Timbreblue Whippets



Several years ago I came across the following definition in an old (1980)
edition of William Safire's Political Dictionary, subtitled the New Language
of Politics: BIG LIE: a falsehood of such magnitude and audacity that it
is bound to have an effect on public opinion even if it is not given
credence by a
majority; a propaganda technique identified with Adolph Hitler.

Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf: "The size of the lie is a definite factor in
causing it to be believed, for the vast masses of a nation are in the depths
of their hearts more easily deceived than they are consciously and
intentionally bad. The primitive simplicity of their minds renders them a
more easy prey to a big lie than a small one, for they themselves often tell
little lies but would be ashamed to tell big ones.

Something therefore always remains and sticks from the most impudent lies, a
fact which all bodies and individuals concerned with the art of lying in
this world know only too well, and hence they stop at nothing to achieve
this end."

The discussion went on to cover the McCarthy era hearings and the lies
perpetrated by them. What does all of that have to do with AB 1634? The
rationale for this misguided proposal is based on false and misleading
figures. Can I provide you with correct figures? No. No one can, but,
the proponents of this bill are making false and misleading claims because
reporting on euthanasia and shelter surrenders is neither accurate nor
complete in this state where there is no standardized or uniform reporting
from each shelter in the state. Those of us who have been observing these
figures over time see, even with the inaccurate and incomplete data, a
steady downward drop in euthanasia and in shelter surrender, even though the
human population has risen precipitously over the past three decades. We
also know that several districts, beginning with San Francisco, which paved
the way, have achieved a no kill goal without any adverse dog and cat
legislation, whatsoever.

Richard Avanzino, whose innovative and marvelous ideas led to this
breakthrough, has since left and moved on to administer the Duffield
Foundation's Maddie's Fund, which helps poorer districts replicate this by
providing advice and funds with the qualifying proviso that there must be no
adverse dog /cat legislation in that district. Passage of AB 1634 would
effectively cut off those funds. The secret to vanzino's success lay in
free and reduced cost neutering and spaying for dogs, cats and feral cats as
well as lots of public education. He was neither judgmental nor
confrontational, and this attitude and willingness to work with all factions
(animal welfare and animal rights) of the pet world set the tone at the SF
SPCA, resulting in record amounts of donations in both volunteer hours and
in monetary contributions. He formed a partnership with the public, rather
than setting up an adversarial role, as most adverse dog and cat legislation
is apt to do. His example, not that of Santa Cruz, the single district that
passed a mandatory s/n law, is the one we should all be emulating.

The Big Lie is that there is no statewide pet overpopulation problem in this
state. There are some districts that have not yet reached no kill that have
local pet population problems, and in all of them the numbers of adoptable
dogs and cats that are euthanized are going down without adverse
legislation. Notice, I said "adoptable dogs and cats," because those are
really the only ones we should be counting. There will always be
euthanasia because there will always be animals too old, too sick or too
vicious to be placed in a family home environment, and there will always be
owner surrendered animals.

The exaggerated, inflated, and fabricated numbers of animals put to sleep is
not something new. It has been going on for many years, now in fact,
since 1990. The original San Mateo proposal was just such an outrageous
attempt at change with its complete moratorium on breeding to be followed by
mandatory neutering and spaying of each and every dog and cat (with no
exceptions), as well as to make it illegal to transport animals for the
purposes of breeding. This 1990 proposal was made in San Mateo County, and
the County Supervisor, Tom Nolan, and Peninsula Humane Society (PHS)
Director, Kim Sturla, posed for T.V. cameras in front of barrels of dead
dogs and cats with paws and tails grotesquely hanging over the barrels. They
claimed that 10,000 animals were being euthanized yearly. Fortunately, no
action was taken, and two task forces were formed that met
regularly. I monitored one of them. "Where did that figure of 10,000
come from," we asked? After getting the data we requested, we discovered
that the animals were eliminated to reveal about 650 adoptable dogs had
been euthanized. Today that figure has been reduced to zero in San Mateo
County, and without mandatory n/s laws.

So, what about the claims of the proponents of AB 1634? First of all, this
is not a statewide problem and is not in need of statewide solution because
one size does not fit all. The Big Lie is being used to try to convince
law makers that it is a problem, and we can prove this unequivocally, and
without playing our opponents' "numbers game."

Fact: Shelter euthanasia has been going down statewide, even in the worst
Testimonial Truth: In the City of Los Angeles at a recent public meeting
(May 2, 2007) the following was revealed in a report to the Public Safety

"Since 2000, ASD has reduced the euthanasia rate by 20 percent using
licensing incentives, promoting adoption programs and strengthening
alliances with the animal rescue community. In addition, ASD has reduced the
number of impounds by a similar percentage through aggressive voluntary
spay/neuter programs."

From Assemblywoman Shirley Horton from San Diego County: The primary
reason I opposed AB 1634 is because it is overreaching. For example, about
7 years ago, San Diego County adopted a voluntary spay/neuter program with
education as a centerpiece. They had the chance to adopt the Los Angeles model, which was very similar to what AB 1634 does, but they chose to take the less forceful, voluntary route. This has, in fact, reduced the euthanasia of
adoptable pets by 100% and is one of the most effective programs in the

Supply and Demand Proof: The numbers of adoptable dogs, especially the
medium, small and toy sized dogs, in many district shelters have been
reduced so much that the demand far exceeds the supply, forcing shelters
like Animal Care & Control in San Francisco to send employees to the Central
Valley shelters to find and bring back adoptable dogs. Some shelters and
some prospective owners have even gone so far as to import these dogs off
the streets of Mexico and Asian countries, all without health inspections.
Sickly dogs have been reported imported from Eastern European countries,

Yet, the hobby breeder, who will be most adversely affected by this bill, is
the least responsible for dogs and cats winding up in shelters. A
responsible breeder checks out the home of the prospective buyer before
selling a dog and always is willing to take the dog back if things don't
work out. The irresponsible breeder probably is one who does not license a
dog (less than 20% of dog owners buy licenses) and undoubtedly won't
follow this law, either. The tariff on each intact dog will not only raise the
cost of these dogs to the average buyer, but will make it impossible for
many breeders to keep extra intact dogs to preserve the gene pool. It will
result in more breeding of closely related specimens with more genetic
diseases as a result. Some of the rarer breeds will probably disappear.
Epidemiological studies in 4 major universities, including U.C. Davis, have
shown that hobby breeders are the least likely source of shelter surrenders.
They also provide a setting where a buyer can inspect the source (sire, dam
and breeder) of a prospective puppy and check on its genetic background and its early socialization.

AB 1634 does not begin to address the feral cat problem, which in San
Francisco was much improved by a policy of aiding the feral cat caretakers
by providing free cat fixes to ferals that were brought in to the shelter.
These cats are then placed back in the colony, which keeps other ferals from
moving in, and which stabilizes and eventually reduces the size of the
colony. In all probability (without complete data), feral cats are the
single largest number of animals being euthanized, and these are all without

So, even without accurate reporting figures, we can accurately state that
the proponents of AB 1634 have been perpetuating the Big Lie that has been
part of their propaganda since 1990. We know that the ultimate aim of the
Animal Rights groups is the complete elimination of purebred dogs and
pedigree cats through the elimination of breeding of these species. This
bill goes a long way towards that goal. I still remember the chilling sight
of a young man in his twenties sitting in the front row at one of the
hearings in San Mateo in 1990 wearing a tee shirt with the letters "ALF"
emblazoned on it.

AB 1634 is also draconian and outrageously manipulative, as was the similar
proposal in San Mateo in 1990 which frightened hobbyists and breeders into
seeking compromise. Social scientists in the mass communications field
have found that the size of a requested opinion or behavior change is important
to the degree of change effected. Herbert Adelson, of Opinion Research
Corporation observes: "The more extreme the opinion change that the
communicator asks for, the more actual change he is likely to get." In
other words if you want to produce a change, the more outrageous or extreme
the requested change, the more likely you are to get it. The original San
Mateo proposal was just such an outrageous attempt at change because some
who opposed the mandatory n/s proposal thought that compromise of a lesser
sort would help prevent the original proposal from being adopted. And, so
the unincorporated part of San Mateo County got an ordinance that included
breeders licensing, something that would have had little or no chance of
passing had it been the original proposal.

John Hamil, DVM, a past president of the California Veterinary Medical
Association, founder of the California Council of Companion Animal Advocates
that sponsored biannual Pet Overpopulation Symposia (now the Animal Care
Conference), member of the American Veterinary Medical Association Animal
Welfare Committee and the National Council on Pet Population Study and
Policy, author of the CVMA and AVMA positions on early spay/neuter, is
undoubtedly the leading authority on this subject. The following quotes
are made with his permission and should effectively debunk the proponents'
propaganda, adding considerable weight to the list of proofs cited above. He
has stated that "The number of animals being euthanized in California
shelters has dropped steadily for more than two decades despite the
continuous population increase in families with pets. Importantly, the
numbers continue to drop faster in shelters that are in jurisdictions that
do not have mandatory spay/neuter."

He further states: "The majority of dogs euthanized are medium to large
mixed breed individuals .. belonging to irresponsible owners who are hard to
identify and who will never comply with this law and are noncompliant with
many other community laws. The number of young,healthy, well socialized,
adoptable animals euthanized is much smaller than the humane and sheltering
community has claimed.

The number of animals euthanized continues to decline each year and varies
greatly from area to area within the state.

Why do we need a coercive, punitive and intrusive "broad brush" state law,
when this is clearly a local issue?"

And the answer to that last question is a resounding We do not need such a
law. It is totally unnecessary.

One of the more preposterous claims is that it will reduce the costs of
shelters and to the public throughout the state. Dr. Hamil effectively
debunks this spurious argument:

"Even if it was possible to 'turn off the faucet', as Assemblyman Levine
likes to say; there would be little reduction in the cost of shelter

As hospital owners know, most costs are fixed (facilities,administration,
trucks, equipment, etc.) The shelter can't even reduce staff as we can in
private business. Unfortunately, a reduction in the numbers of animals
entering the shelter will only effect a small reduction in the overall cost
to the taxpayer. This is demonstrated by the steady increase in animal
control budgets over the last two decades despite the number of animals
entering the shelters and the number of animals euthanized decreasing

The method of accounting, linking the overall cost of animal control to the
number of animals euthanized, exploited by the sponsors of this bill is very
misleading. Using this method, the cost of each euthanasia goes up as the
number of euthanized animals goes down. The use of this tactic is dishonest,
disingenuous or, at best, misinformed."

They would also have us believe that this would save the state millions of
dollars because of reduced euthanasia. Not so. The animal control
shelters and pounds would not close their doors. Euthanasia is a miniscule
cost in the overall picture of animal rescues, rabies checks, animal abuse,
dog fighting, reuniting pets with owners, etc. that animal control officers
engage in every day.

It is time to set the record straight and to tell the truth .The truth is
that there is a pet population problem in some parts of this state, but not
statewide. The truth is that those areas having problems should emulate the
techniques and efforts made in the successful areas, and perhaps the state
should contribute money to assist with more public education and more low
cost and free spay and neuter clinics in those areas having problems.

A special aside to Democrats, many of whom seem to support this bill: The
truth is that the public is tired of big lies, whether they be about
mushroom clouds, W.M.D.'s and other false reasons for going to war, or about
a supposed pet overpopulation problem and use of propaganda, based upon
inflated, incomplete and inaccurate data. Dog and cat owners come in all
sizes and belong to all political parties. We are united in our desire to
see the truth prevail. We are tired of propaganda and spin, and we will
cross party lines, if needs be to vote against those who propagate it.
Every poll I have seen shows that the public overwhelmingly opposes this
overly intrusive bill. If it were brought to a vote in this state, it
would most certainly go down to defeat. We should be able to count on our
elected representatives not to perpetuate the Big Lie and not to enact such
an unpopular and unjust law.

A Thousand Snakes in the Grass

Permission to reprint.
Written by Margaret Anne Cleek for
The Alaskan Malamute Club of America Newsletter

"Better the dragon you see than a thousand snakes in the grass." This Chinese Proverb should be recognized and heeded by pet owners and fanciers.  MORE....

Shelter Adoption = Moral Superiority
Animal Enterprise Terrorism
~ by Karen Snider ~
Animal Control Terrorists

Animal Rights VS Animal Welfare
NCRAOA: Animal Guardians, Legal Status of Animals, Animal Personhood, legal compensation for animals

Animal Control = People Control
A Mini-Lesson In How Propaganda Works