That would make a great name of a small pub in a tiny town somewhere in Scotland, wouldn't it? Another dream of mine, maybe not the pub, but a restaurant perhaps, in Scotland, living on a farm. Anyways, thats what I was this morning, for sure. It absolutely poured. It didn't just rain, it poured. I was soaked through and through. The rain coat that my mother bought me a few years ago, somehow the sleeve ripped, and its not usuable anymore, so I removed the hood, and put that over my newly flattened hair, only to have the humidity inside the hood make the hair haywire once again. But the hair stayed dry, just every piece of clothing on my body was soaked. I hope you all thought of me at five this morning! :) Most of the kitties that come out for me each day to greet me and await their breakfast were no where to be seen today. Its twice as miserable for them. So, I was done complaining once I peeled off my clothes for the dryer when I got home.
I stopped by to visit with Lillian after work yesterday - she got some new medicine for little Paddy/Pepper as she now calls him. He is as sweet as can be, and now has pink gums! He has a condition known as Stomatitis, and might eventually have to have all his teeth removed. But Lillian was adamant about giving him his antibiotics, and other remedies, and for now, he looks to be pain free.
Thanks to everyone that responded with comments yesterday to my blog post. It shows me that someone IS actually reading my blog, and that its not just my own little diary.
I was reading an interesting article in Psychology Today recently about PETA, an organization thats been around a long time, and a long time ago, I was supportive of PETA, I sent them money (before I had my own little rescue) but I was never one to stand in front of the (old War Memorial) Blue Cross Arena each time a circus came to town and drench myself in fake blood, or whatever, but they had aggressive sales folks calling at all times of the day for donations, and I helped out occasionally. But I have heard really negative reports lately, and I will share with you parts of this article that I actually found shocking. What I found to be most distressing is that the organization seems to have an agenda oriented against the keeping of animals as pets at all.
PETA was founded in March 1980 by Ingrid Newkirk (currently its president) and a fellow animal rights activist, Alex Pacheco. Its headquarters are in Norfolk, Virginia and it is from the state of Virginia that many of the complaints about PETA came to me. Most of these had to do with PETA’s animal shelter which is housed there. Many messages contained documents that were obtained from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) through freedom of information requests, and much the same information can be found on the VDACS website. In Virginia all animal shelters must report the number of cats and dogs they take in each year, how many animals were reclaimed by their owners, adopted out, transferred to other agencies, died of natural causes, were euthanized (killed), and how many the shelter held alive at the end of the calendar year. My correspondents suggested that the proportion of animals being killed by PETA was extremely high and was causing public concern in Virginia.
I verified the various reports that I had received against the official records from the VDACS then did the following simple set of calculations. For the last five years I added the number of dogs and cats euthanized and divided by the total number of dogs and cats taken in (excluding those held only for sterilization surgery which were classified as “other” by the VDACS prior to 2010). This gave me the percentage of dogs and cats PETA killed in a given year.
The official records indicate that nearly 95 percent of the animals taken in by the shelter are killed and less than 1 percent are adopted. I found this result to be quite distressing. So did the ABC television station WVEC, channel 13, in nearby Hampton Roads, Virginia. In 2011 the TV station engaged in some investigative journalism. They compared PETA’s euthanasia rates with other area animal control departments, shelters, SPCA's and humane societies that have open admission policies for animals. All had lower euthanasia rates.
Such statistics triggered a complaint to Virginia’s Agriculture Department and VDACS then commissioned Dr. Daniel Kovich to investigate and conduct an inspection of PETA’s headquarters. In his final report he noted “The facility does not contain sufficient animal enclosures to routinely house the number of animals annually reported as taken into custody.” Dr. Kovich went on to conclude that PETA’s “primary purpose is not to find permanent adoptive homes for animals.” He also determined that PETA employees kill 84 percent of the animals in their custody within 24 hours of receiving them—even though most are healthy and not showing any behavioral problems. Inquiries about how and if PETA attempts to actually find people that might want to adopt the animals that they received were not answered.
I believe that any rational person is left with the obvious question, “How can an organization that is supposedly dedicated to the ethical treatment of animals justify killing all but 5 percent of the animals entrusted to their shelter, with the vast majority of these executed within 24 hours of their admission—well before they can be assessed, or any attempts made to find adoptive homes for them?”
Perhaps the best answer comes from Ingrid Newkirk herself. In an interview with Newsday in February 1988 she said, “In the end, I think it would be lovely if we stopped this whole notion of pets altogether.”
Apparently Newkirk believes that one way to help achieve this “lovely” outcome is to destroy virtually all of the animals placed in PETA’s care before they can be adopted and become well-loved pets in any family’s home.
Never again PETA.