Tuesday, January 29, 2008

WE WON!

Thanks to everyone who voted for ACR and helped us win! With 18,580 votes, we won the January 28th round on the Vote4cause website. The exact amount we won is still pending, but every little bit helps. Thank you for helping the kitties!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Strengthen Maryland’s Stance Against Animal Fighting

The Maryland Senate is considering a bill that would make it a felony to attend a dogfight or a cockfight in Maryland. While it is a felony to stage an animal fight in Maryland, the penalty for attending spectators is a mere misdemeanor. Senate Bill 44 would change this, making it a felony, and finally closing the animal fighting spectator loophole.

This cruel and inhumane practice is closely connected to a host of other crimes, including illegal drug and weapons violations, gambling, aggravated assaults and drug violence. Law enforcement officers can attest to the presence of children at animal fights is the rule rather than the exception. When children are taught that cruelty to animals is acceptable and fun, rather than a serious crime, they are more likely to exhibit cruelty themselves.

Animal fighting results in serious injury and death to thousands of innocent animals. Please help Maryland change this by contacting Senator Lisa A. Gladden and Senator Brian E. Frosh and urging them to schedule Maryland Senate Bill 44 for a vote in the Judicial Proceedings Committee and then vote for its passage.

Contact Information:

Senator Lisa Gladden
11 Bladen Street
Annapolis, MD 21401

Senator Brian Frosh
11 Bladen Street
Annapolis, MD 21401

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Vote for Alley Cat Rescue

Visit www.vote4cause.org to vote for ACR. This website was created to give money to today’s charities and good causes. When you vote, advertising money is generated through the site’s sponsors. The money is given to the organization with the most votes for that voting period.

According to the site, “since VOTE4CAUSE is relatively new, the generated money is relatively small. We feel it is better to give larger amounts to fewer causes rather than smaller amounts to more causes. This will change as VOTE4CAUSE grows.”

Voting doesn’t cost you a cent and it’s easy! So, please visit the site and vote for Alley Cat Rescue. You can vote as many times as you want (in 30 second intervals). So, check it out!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Vick's Pit Bulls Sniffing Fresh Air in Utah

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (AP) -- Twenty-two of the pit bulls seized from suspended NFL quarterback Michael Vick's dogfighting operation are sniffing the dry desert air, getting to know human kindness and gobbling treats at a Utah animal sanctuary.

Each dog has its own pen inside an octagonal housing unit and an outdoor run. They're being fed "canine caviar" -- a special dog-food formulation. They're chewing rubber bones. They can wrestle rubber toys filled with doggie treats.

"We're walking these guys and touching them more," said Patty Hegwood, director of animal care for the Best Friends Animal Society in Kanab, about 260 miles south of Salt Lake City.

"This is red cliffs and rocks and desert as oppose to Virginia, which is green and humid. So they have lots of noses up in the air, taking in all the different smells. Some are a little pensive.

They're trying to figure out where they are, basically. They're looking at us like, 'Who the heck are you?"'

The dogs landed Wednesday after an 8-hour flight in a chartered twin-prop from Richmond, Virginia.

Other shelters are taking another 25 dogs from Vick's 15-acre country estate in southeastern Virginia.

"It's the end of a long grind for these guys," Best Friends spokesman John Polis said.
"Our fondest hope is that they get adopted, but we have to be very conservative because these dogs come from a rough background," he said.

Caretakers are keeping the pit bulls separated from some 600 other dogs at a 3,000-acre sanctuary that leases another 30,000 acres of federal land for grazing animals.

Best Friends has 400 employees.

Helping the pit bulls adjust to a new social life will be difficult, but their handlers will observe the animals for at least six months and work to correct any behavior problems, Polis said.

Polis said the sanctuary euthanizes dogs only for medical reasons.

A court order prevents the sanctuary from discussing any of the dogs' conditions until the last of three co-defendants who trained them for fighting is sentenced January 25, Polis said.

Vick is serving a 23-month prison sentence for a dogfighting conspiracy.

The Best Friends sanctuary will appear in a new National Geographic channel series called "Dog Town" that starts Friday.

article provided by www.CNN.com

Friday, January 11, 2008

Switzerland Cat Fur Trade

A petition has been launched by the Swiss association SOS Chat (a cat activist group) to ban the production and sale of cat fur products in Switzerland. The Petition is to bring Switzerland into line with the European Union where the production of cat furs will be outlawed in all member states this year. Currently, Switzerland bans the import of cat furs, but allows domestic production and sale.

According to the group’s co-founder, the ban is supported by Switzerland’s president and members of Parliament; opposition comes from hunters and farmers, who believe cat fur is a remedy for rheumatism, an old wives’ tale. "In September, October, November and December the hunters and the people who work for the tanners go out and shoot all the feral cats or all cats which are 200 meters away from homes," Tomek says.

This is a great step forward by the European Union and hopefully the SOS Chat’s petition will supply the added pressure needed for Switzerland to comply. So far the petition has acquired over 50,000 signatures, including those of Brigitte Bardot, Michael Schumacher and former Miss Switzerland Lauriane GilliĆ©ron. The European Union’s action could set a precedent for cat-friendly legislation and animal welfare laws in general.

Alley Cat Rescue is urging our members to either sign the petition or write letters supporting the ban to diplomatic representatives. The petition can be downloaded in English here from www.soschats.org.

Letters can be sent to:

Diplomatic representation in the US:
Ambassador Alfred Defago
2900 Cathedral Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008

Diplomatic representation from the US:
Ambassador J. Richard Fredericks
Jubilaeumstrasse 93, 3005 Bern Switzerland

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

California Feral Cats Now Employed

Feral cats have been given a second chance and an important job in the state of California. Thanks to a local animal welfare organization, Voice for the Animals Foundation, these animals are doing what they do best…rodent patrol!

The group has established a “Working Cats Program” to promote TNR and the humane control of feral cats. After being spayed/neutered and vaccinated, the cats are relocated to businesses in the area that are experiencing rodent problems. Businesses slowly introduce the cats to their new home over a period of 30 days. Eventually, the cats become familiar with their surroundings and the dependable food source provided by care takers encourage the cats to stay put.

Feral cats are currently employed by the Los Angeles Flower Market, the Crossroads School campus, and recently by the Los Angeles Police Department Wilshire and Foothills Divisions. According to the Voice for the Animals, it is the cats’ scent that keeps the rats at bay. Although they are great hunters, rats get one whiff of the cats and vacate the premises. In a recent Los Angeles Times article, the LAPD states they are happy with the outcome and are working on introducing more ferals to other divisions. There are officers at each station more than willing to care for the cats. “If I were a wild cat, that would be a great job. Your meals are there, your housing is there, you’re at a police station so you’re safe,” says Commander Kirk Albanese.

“Compared to the methods that are most commonly used to control rats, this method proves to be effective, humane and environmentally friendly. It is a win-win-win situation!” proclaims the Voice for the Animals Foundation on their website.