Tag: WAN

WAN Exclusive With Patty Shenker About L.A. City Banning The Use Of Barbaric Electric Prods, Shocking Devices & Other Cruel Instruments On Animals In Rodeos

This week, the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to ban the cruel use of electric prods, shocking devices, flanking straps, spurs, and other barbaric instruments from rodeos.

The motion, put forth by Councilmember Bob Blumenfield and seconded by Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell in December of last year, now moves to the Los Angeles City Attorney to draft the ordinance.

WAN talked with Patty Shenker who, along with Heather Wilson, has been advocating for animal rights for decades. Both Shenker, who spoke at the council meeting, and Wilson, were among those working with Blumenfield to pass this critical measure.

“The writing of the ordinance is just the beginning,” Shenker told WAN, explaining the relevance of a similar law that passed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1992. While the law prohibiting the use of tools of torture on animals in rodeos did not categorically ban rodeos, it did effectively stop them from occurring in the state.

“I was planning to talk to the city council about how dangerous rodeos are and how they are not only an animal issue, but a public safety issue as well,” Shenker told WAN, explaining that while waiting to virtually testify in favor of the ban, she learned from Wilson that the council passed the motion.

When it was Shenker’s turn to speak at the meeting, she graciously thanked the council for advancing the new legislation, and stated: “As violence continues to grow in our country, we need our leaders to lead us to a kinder more compassionate world for all, including animals, you just did that, thank you!”

As noted on a petition that was created by Last Chance For Animals, “rodeos and rodeo-type activities are exhibitions of animal cruelty that are sanctioned in the guise of competition. Due to events like bull riding, wrestling, calf roping, and steer tailing, calves, steers, bulls, horses, and other animals suffer horrific psychological and physical traumas including broken limbs, cardiac arrest, punctured lungs, torn ligaments, ruptured organs, broken necks, crushed tracheas, and more.”

“We should be able to relate to these animals that go through the same insolence, pain, and abuse that humans are sometimes subjected to,” said Shenker who met with Councilmember Blumenfield, his assistant, and Wilson, regarding the ban prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Now is a great opportunity to take care of this before things begin to open up again.”

Help urge the Los Angeles City Council to prohibit the staging of rodeos and rodeo-type activities in the city by signing the petition HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

The post WAN Exclusive With Patty Shenker About L.A. City Banning The Use Of Barbaric Electric Prods, Shocking Devices & Other Cruel Instruments On Animals In Rodeos appeared first on World Animal News.

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Breaking! WAN Talks With LAPD Officer Regarding Last Night’s Shooting & Alleged Theft Of Lady Gaga’s French Bulldogs

Tragic news this morning as reports are surfacing that Lady Gaga’s dog walker was shot numerous times in the chest last night in Hollywood, California. The criminal who shot Lady Gaga’s dog walker then stole two of her French bulldogs.

WAN talked with LAPD Officer Tony Im, who confirmed that the incident took place last night. Officer Im however was not able to confirm that the dogs belong to Lady Gaga, noting that they do not release information on victims “regardless of their status.”

Officer Im explained that a single victim shooting occurred on the 1500 block of Sierra Bonita Avenue on Wednesday evening. A male suspect fired a semi-automatic handgun striking the 30-year-old male victim, who was subsequently transferred to a local hospital.

According to Officer Im, the suspect was observed fleeing in a white vehicle north of Sierra Bonita Avenue toward Hollywood Boulevard. An investigation is currently underway.

A representative for Lady Gaga reportedly confirmed that the shooting victim was Lady Gaga’s dog walker and that her French bulldogs, Koji and Gustav, were stolen. The singer-songwriter is offering a $500,000 reward for the dogs’ safe return.

Anyone with information or who has possession of the dogs can reportedly email KojiandGustav@gmail.com and also call the LAPD at 213.972.2971

WAN inquired if police thought this incident might be related to the theft of two English bulldogs earlier this week in North Hollywood, California, to which Officer Im replied that there is “no way to connect the two at this time.”

WAN is praying for the safe return of the two French Bulldogs and that justice will be served for the victim of this horrific crime.

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Urgent Action Needed! WAN Talks With World-Renowned Scientist Dr. Reese Halter About The Controversial Wolf Hunt That Just Began In Wisconsin & How To End It

Tragically, yesterday, hundreds of gray wolves in Wisconsin became prey to greedy and callous hunters in the state’s first wolf hunt in seven years. The abhorrent and senselessly cruel hunt runs through Sunday or until the state reaches its appalling kill limit’ of 200 innocent lives.

The controversial hunt was ordered to take place after a Jefferson County Circuit Court decided last week that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources violated state law by refusing to schedule a winter 2021 gray wolf hunt when the gray wolf was delisted from the Endangered Species Act by the Trump administration on January 4, 2021.

WAN had the opportunity to talk with Dr. Reese Halter, a world-renowned scientist and eco-stress physiologist specializing in Earth’s life support systems, as well as the author of the recently-released book, The Gen Z Emergency.


“This is heartbreaking and all because of a loophole,” Dr. Halter passionately explained to WAN, freely using adjectives such as vile and disgusting to address the hunt, as well as some well-earned expletives when referring to the sick people who participate in them.

According to Dr. Halter, people need to respect science, pay attention, and understand that wolves are among some of the two million different forms of life that humans need to exist.

“Wolves are gatekeepers, curators of the wildland,” noted Dr. Halter, who has spent more than four decades studying nature. “The wolves are helping us!  People also need to realize that we have the best of the best after 1.1 billion years of reproductive evolution.”

That is not something to interfere with, nor, as per Dr. Halter, is it anyone’s right to take away a child’s birthright to have clean air, clean water, old growth forests, thriving wildlife, and coral reefs.

Biodiversity is key to sustaining a healthy planet.

“It is time to act like adults. Humans make mistakes but we must learn from them,” stated Dr. Halter. “We need decency.”

Referencing one of his heroes, Dr. Halter noted that Sir Roger Moore described it best when he shared his thoughts on the atrocity that is trophy hunting, stating that: “Sport hunting is a sickness, a perversion, and a danger, and should be recognized as such. Thankfully, those of us with a conscience are appalled by the idea of gunning down animals for the sake of a thrill or a photo.”

One of Dr. Halter’s many messages to those he calls ‘loathsome and entitled hunters,’ is to “get a camera” and shoot photos of animals that are alive in their natural habitats. Now, that’s a thrill!

WAN and Dr. Halter also agreed that an urgent call to action must ensue. People across the country who oppose this vile wolf hunt should contact Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers and ask him to stop it, as well as permanently ban wolf hunting throughout the state. For those with the time and fury to do so, Dr. Halter suggests sending a hand-written letter to the Governor. Hand-written letters are required to be logged by the Governor’s office and responded to.

Contact Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers at his Madison Office: (608) 266-1212. His mailing address is P.O. Box 7863, Madison, WI, 53707. People can also contact the Governor’s Milwaukee Office: (414) 227-4344. The mailing address is 819 N 6th St, Ste. 560, Milwaukee, WI, 53203.

People are also encouraged to contact United States President Joe Biden, HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

The post Urgent Action Needed! WAN Talks With World-Renowned Scientist Dr. Reese Halter About The Controversial Wolf Hunt That Just Began In Wisconsin & How To End It appeared first on World Animal News.

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WAN Exclusive Update On A Controversial Case Of Alleged Neglect Of 20 Farm Animals In Colorado

After receiving a tip over the weekend about an alleged animal hoarding situation in Colorado that included starving pigs left outside in freezing conditions, WAN did some research and uncovered an abhorrent case of animal cruelty.

Sadly, the complex case involves a group of 20 farm animals and others that are innocent victims of severe cruelty and neglect, allegedly under the care of Halina Morley and Laurel Burchell.

One of the reasons this case is unlike most animal hoarding cases, is the small ‘manageable’ number of animals on the property. There are far more pressing issues involved in this case which local police and authorities have been investigating.

Yesterday morning, WAN had the opportunity to speak with the Founder and President of the nonprofit, Denkai Animal Sanctuary, Floss Blackburn, who was first alerted to this situation by Mary Stevens, the 80-year-old owner of the property located in Weld County, Colorado. Stevens leased a small portion of her land to Morley and Burchell, where they keep their animals.

As noted by Blackburn, Stevens is trying to evict her tenants and issued a call for help. Blackburn visited the property on February 3rd  and found the animals enduring subzero temperatures without proper bedding, food or water. Potbellied pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, a rabbit, and a dog were among the live animals Blackburn noticed suffering on the property among those that had already perished.

After finding the horribly neglected animals, Blackburn contacted authorities who reportedly stated that there was no evidence of wrongdoing. Blackburn then called Zachery Vaughn, an animal control officer with the Weld County Sheriff’s Office to request that they perform a necropsy on the dead animals because then they would have the evidence they needed.

The request was denied.

According to Blackburn, who stressed that animal welfare laws in Colorado are severely lacking, Vaughn explained that, “Morley is keeping the care for these animals at just barely the minimum allowed per the statutes, therefore there was nothing that the sheriff’s department could do other than continue to monitor the situation.”

“The bare minimum is not enough for animals to survive,” a frustrated Blackburn told WAN.

WAN also reached out to Joe Moylan, a Weld County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson about the situation and what can be done to save the animals on the property. Moylan stated that they have been investigating this situation for two weeks and recently went to the property but could not find any violations to warrant an animal cruelty charge.

“We considered seeking a warrant,” Moylan told WAN, further explaining that they “called in the state vet who said nothing was wrong.”

It seems as through so much is wrong in this case. Blackburn explained to WAN that people who were present during the visit told them that “the vet did not put hands on the animals to do an accurate assessment.”

The Weld County Sheriff’s Office has reportedly been flooded with calls and e-mails from individuals and rescuers trying to help. Yet, they continue to claim that the law has their hands tied in reference to seizing and providing safe care for the animals.

Unfathomably, as per a statement released by Denkai Animal Sanctuary, the Weld County Sheriff’s Office has reportedly also made it clear that individuals trying to help these animals by bringing food, providing water, posting about going onto the property, and calling in ‘false reports’ in regards to the well-being of these animals, will receive citations and can be arrested.

“The bottom line with this situation is that laws do not sufficiently exist to protect farmed animals from situations such as this. The minimum standard is not enough to keep these animals alive and will ultimately fail them, allowing repeat offenders to get away with continued neglect and abuse,” stated Denkai Animal Sanctuary.

Denkai Animal Sanctuary created a fundraiser to help the animals in need HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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WAN Exclusive With Animal Place Sanctuary Which Urgently Needs To Find Homes For 6 Cows Being Saved From Slaughter In Northern California

Photos by: Marji Beach, Animal Place

What started as a heartwarming story about the rescue of two 20-year-old cows, Honey and Babe, by Animal Place, a nonprofit that provides a safe haven to nearly 400 rescued farm animals, and promotes a compassionate vegan lifestyle, has turned into an urgent call to action to help save six more cows before they are sent to auction to be slaughtered at the end of January.

WAN talked to Kim Sturla, the Executive Director of Animal Place, as well as the organization’s Director of Fund Development, Marji Beach, who secured the rescue of Honey and Babe, which took place on January 16th.


Sturla explained to WAN that there were a total of 13 cows, the majority believed to be offspring of either Honey or Babe, that needed new homes after their elderly caregiver could no longer tend to them and her family was unable to afford their upkeep.


While they were able to find a home for five of the cows at a sanctuary in San Diego, Sturla and Beach are now trying to save the remaining cows before they fall into the wrong hands or are sent to auction where they will most-likely end up being slaughtered for their meat.

“Cows are so hard to find placement for. They are large animals, expensive to care for, and require complex care,” Beach told WAN, noting that the best resolution to the situation would be to find an adopter or adopters for the remaining cows, ideally in Northern California. “Animal Place has a lot of land but, sadly, not enough staff to take care of six more animals. It is hard to find caregivers in rural areas.”

They encourage people who are interested in volunteering or working for the sanctuary to contact Animal Place HERE.

The priority now is to find the six remaining cows new homes. If you are interested in adopting them, please contact Marji Beach at marji@animalplace.org.

Donations to help Honey and Babe, as well as the six remaining cows who need to find their forever homes, can also be made HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

The post WAN Exclusive With Animal Place Sanctuary Which Urgently Needs To Find Homes For 6 Cows Being Saved From Slaughter In Northern California appeared first on World Animal News.

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Breaking! WAN Talks With Endangered Habitats League After Judge Blocks L.A. Development That Would Have Threatened Imperiled Mountain Lions

In a victory against a destructive project threatening local mountain lions in northern Los Angeles County, a judge issued a ruling Monday blocking a 1,300-acre Northlake development.

The development was planned to be constructed on fire-prone wildlands, and would have imperiled rare species of wildlife and buried 3.5 miles of Grasshopper Creek, a pristine stream that feeds into Southern California’s last free-flowing river, the Santa Clara.

In response to a lawsuit brought by conservation organizations, including the Center for Biological Diversity, along with Endangered Habitats League, Judge Richard L. Fruin, Jr. found that the development’s environmental review failed to consider less harmful plans. One that would have avoided destruction of Grasshopper Creek, which western spadefoot toads call home, and the surrounding habitat of vulnerable wildlife including mountian lions.

“When a water system is removed, it pulls the plug on the whole ecosystem,” Dan Silver, Executive Director of the Endangered Habitats League told WAN, while providing a bit of background on the project he calls archaic. According to Silver, the project was probably bad planning in 1992 when it was first created and introduced. Now, however, it is completely unacceptable.

The Northlake development would also block a wildlife corridor that is being used by imperiled mountian lions as documented in recent photos taken by The Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority. Roads and developments like Northlake are causing genetic isolation among local mountain lions, which are now a “candidate species” under the state’s Endangered Species Act.

Northlake mountain lion crossing photo by Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority

The court also found that key portions of the development’s environmental approvals were “fatally flawed” under the California Environmental Quality Act and determined that the project approvals must be voided.

“The project is outdated in terms of current issues and conditions that were much different in 1992, such as: climate change, gas emissions, fire threats, vulnerable habitats, and the need for affordable housing, among others,” said Silver.

The lawsuit was filed in May 2019 by the Center for Biological Diversity, which also represents the Endangered Habitats League. The Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy filed an administrative appeal against the development, and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife submitted a letter to the county concluding that the environmental review was deficient.

As noted by the Center, Los Angeles County Supervisors Janice Hahn, Kathryn Barger, and Hilda A. Solis voted in favor of the development last year, while Supervisor Sheila Kuehl opposed it.

“Our elected officials should never have approved this outdated proposal to bulldoze a stream to build sprawl development in fire-prone wildlands,” J.P. Rose, an attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity, said in a statement. Communities and local wildlife deserve better.”

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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WAN Exclusive Update About Florida Manatee With The Word ‘TRUMP’ Etched On Its Back; $5,000 Reward Offered For Information

Photo by: Hailey Warrington, a boat captain for a fishing charter company in Crystal River, Fla.

Following yesterday’s disturbing news that a manatee was found in Florida on Sunday with the word ‘TRUMP’ etched on its body, WAN talked to Christina Meister at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service headquarters who confirmed that they are currently investigating the situation.

While it is an open investigation and updates are limited, Meister did share with WAN that, “The manatee does not appear to be seriously injured as it seems that the word was written in algae on the animal’s back.”

However,” continued Meister, “touching, harming or harassing West Indian manatees is still illegal and is a violation of the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. Touching, harming or harassing manatees does cause harm as it can cause stress and or interfere with their natural behaviors in the wild.”

In the meantime, the Center for Biological Diversity is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of the person or persons responsible for the cruel act of the threatened manatee in north Florida’s Homosassa River. According to the organization, harassment of a manatee is a federal criminal offense punishable by a $50,000 fine and up to one year in prison.

“It’s heartbreaking that this manatee was subjected to this vile, criminal act,” said Jaclyn Lopez, Florida Director of the Center, in a statement. “It’s clear that whoever harmed this defenseless, gentle giant, is capable of doing grave violence and needs to be apprehended immediately.”

Protected under the Endangered Species Act since 1963, manatees are slow-moving plant eaters with no natural predators. Sadly, boat mortality accounts for an estimated 20% of manatee deaths.

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is aware of this incident and is working closely with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission,” Aurelia Skipwith, Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said in a statement sent to WAN. “If you have any information regarding this case, please call our wildlife crime tips hotline at 1-844-397-8477 or email us at FWS_TIPS@FWS.GOV.”

The post WAN Exclusive Update About Florida Manatee With The Word ‘TRUMP’ Etched On Its Back; $5,000 Reward Offered For Information appeared first on World Animal News.

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WAN Exclusive With Filmmaker James Kleinert, The Warrior Who Is Saving America’s Last Wild Horses

Tragically, 455 of America’s wild horses recently became the latest victims unfairly targeted by helicopters during yet another controversial Bureau of Land Management (BLM) roundup under the guise of ‘herd management.’

Not surprisingly, little information about this travesty, which took place between December 5th and December 18th within and outside of the herd areas located in Lincoln County, Nevada, has been shared publicly.

According to James Kleinert, who has dedicated his life to saving America’s wild horses and has also produced several award-winning documentaries about their plight, the lack of information by the BLM is intentional.

WAN had the opportunity to talk with Kleinert about his decades-long career advocating for wild horses as the oil, gas, mining, and cattle industries continue to take away their legal and environmental protections. This is one of the many issues Kleinert addresses in his latest documentary series, Mustangs & Renegades.

“I never intended it to be a political film, but there are all kinds of corruption at the BLM,” Kleinert told WAN, sadly sharing that the BLM only adopts a small percentage of the captured horses after they are savagely ripped away from their families during these brutal roundups. The majority of the wild horses are sent to what Kleinert refers to as “long-term camps” or shipped to Mexico and Canada for slaughter.

As noted by Kleinert, the BLM, which makes it especially challenging to record what goes on during one of these roundups, lies about the number of horses on a range, the appropriate management levels, and the reasons why the ‘excess’ horses need to be removed.

A statement released by the BLM regarding the December roundup in Nevada, claimed that, among other reasons, the wild horses were gathered because of a lack of food and water.

“If the horses on the land get sick or die after drinking polluted water, an alarm is set off which the BLM does not want to happen.” said Kleinert, explaining why former BLM Director Jim Baca, who Kleinert interviewed, called horses an indicator species.

The BLM also reportedly lets the public know about these so-called “emergency roundups” at the last minute, so that little to nothing can be done to protect the horses from them.

Kleinert’s film exposes the truth about what really happens to America’s wild horses, the truth which hurts the BLM’s public image. “The BLM seems to think that, if they can stop the filming, then…problem solved. If there’s no documentation of the violence, then the BLM can plausibly deny that it ever happened.”

“This is also about something much bigger, the complete devastation of our environment by industries, and ultimately people, who are making a living by exploiting wild horses,” stated Kleinert, who filed a lawsuit in 2015 regarding public records and legal proceedings with the Bureau of Land Management. Since the history-making judgement in 2016, Kleinert v. BLM can now be used by any citizen seeking information per the Freedom of Information Act FOIA.

“We are living out of balance and have to start living sustainably,” concluded Kleinert. whose documentaries serve as tremendous educational and awareness pieces about the plight of wild horses, burros, and the environment.

If you would like to watch the new film Mustangs & Renegades, CLICK HERE!

Call to action to Save America’s Wild Horses, HERE!

Please urge President Trump to stop the brutal campaign against America’s Wild Horses and place a moratorium on all Wild Horse & Burro round ups. Call the White House at (202) 456-1111

To help support James and his mission, please consider making a donation HERE!

The post WAN Exclusive With Filmmaker James Kleinert, The Warrior Who Is Saving America’s Last Wild Horses appeared first on World Animal News.

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WAN Exclusive: Urgent Help Needed To Rehome 32 Chimps From The Wildlife Waystation To Sanctuaries In The U.S.

Sha-Sha is one of the 32 chimps needing to be rehomed in a sanctuary. Photos and images from North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance

When the Wildlife Waystation in Southern California closed its doors in 2019, hundreds of exotic and domestic animals needed to be rehomed. While the majority of the animals were relocated, 32 chimpanzees remained. Now, with a little more than three weeks left before the new year, it is more important than ever to help ensure these precious chimps are placed in their new homes in 2021.

Norma is one of the 32 chimps needing to be rehomed in a sanctuary. 

While the California Department of Fish and Wildlife has been temporarily caring for the chimps, the North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance (NAPSA) has been working to secure the chimps forever homes in four reputable sanctuaries throughout the United States.

WAN had the opportunity to speak with several of the people and organizations that are involved in the multi-faceted rescue and relocation effort to save the chimps.

Ewok is one of the 32 chimps needing to be rehomed in a sanctuary.

“It was either we take action or we would have a catastrophe with animals not being cared for,” CDFW Regional Manager Ed Pert shared with WAN. “These chimps have been in difficult circumstances most of their lives and we want to do what’s right for them.”

Most of the chimps have been rescued from animal testing labs, as well as the so-called “entertainment” and “pet” industries, and reportedly cost $100,000 to care for each month.

“The situation is dire and we don’t want funding to run out with the world currently the way it is,” Erika Fleury, Program Director for the North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance told WAN, who explained the urgent need for funding to cover the cost of construction and building viable new habitats at the various sanctuaries, as well as for the complex care of the chimps. “This is a massive collaboration involving NAPSA and the participating sanctuaries, our fundraising partner 7th Generation Advisors, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Waystation itself.”

Cy is one of the 32 chimps needing to be rehomed in a sanctuary.

According to Fluery, despite the various sanctuaries being full, they have the potential to get all of the remaining chimpanzees placed in 2021, but financial donations are critically needed to help make this happen.

Sanctuaries need funds to build space as soon as possible and plan for lifetime care costs. In the meantime, funds are needed to provide care for these chimpanzees while their new homes are being created. An anonymous foundation also recently offered a $250,000 matching grant which they want to fulfill by the end of the year.

“All of these pieces have to come together at once,” continued Fleury. “It is nerve-racking.”

For example, Fleury shared with WAN, Chimp Haven in Louisiana, the world’s largest sanctuary of its kind, agreed to take 11 chimps by Spring of next year, even though the sanctuary is currently at full capacity. To facilitate this, Chimp Haven first needs to secure the estimated $1.7 million dollars necessary to create more space and construct new habitats for the animals.

Fleury further explained that six of the chimps are able to be relocated to Chimpanzee Sanctuary NW in Washington by Fall. Another seven can also be rehomed at the Center for Great Apes in Florida. The organization Primarily Primates in Texas also agreed to take eight of the chimps providing they have the financing needed to expand their facilities to accommodate them.

Funds are being raised through the Chimpanzees in Need emergency fundraising campaign that was launched by the North American Primate Sanctuary Alliance and the nonprofit 7th Generation Advisors. Contributions to the campaign are collected through 7th Generation-led Wildlife Rescue Fund.

Please help these 32 precious chimps relocate to their new homes in 2021 and make a donation HERE!

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WAN Exclusive: A Heroic Community Unites In Months-Long Effort To Save An Injured Deer Whose Antlers Were Tangled In Wire Mesh

Photo from California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Warden Piedra

An example of compassion, inclusiveness, and the power that each person has to make a positive difference in the world occurred over the past several months when a community united to save the life of an adult male deer in peril, in Glendale, California.

WAN had the opportunity to speak with many of the individuals in the community who worked together to help free the buck whose antlers were tangled in a life-threatening combination of discarded heavy-duty construction wire and mesh.

The harrowing situation began to unfold in late September when Glendale residents Aren Youssefians and Alex Hill spotted the deer on their ring camera with what they believed to be chicken wire wrapped around his antlers. Worried for the deer’s safety, they shared a single post on a neighborhood app, which turned into a thread of hundreds of people wanting to help free the deer.

Ring camera footage and images from Aren Youssefians and Alex Hill

“It was difficult to watch the buck struggle walking up and down the driveway and to witness how his condition was deteriorating in subsequent videos,” Youssefians told WAN, further explaining that they were noticing more deer looking for food and water in their backyard this year, a sad consequence of the recent wildfires in the area.

Animal advocate Mick Davoudian, who shared with WAN that they “kind of lost hope when the deer vanished for two weeks,” was among those responding to the videos that Youssefians and Hill continued to post over the months-long effort to save the deer, who has since been named Houdini.

Photo from California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Warden Piedra

Davoudian contacted fellow animal advocate Lisa Karlan, who discovered that rehab facilities could not help with the compromised animal because adult male deer get captive myopathy; an exertion or stress-induced muscle degenerative disease that affects captured wild animals. Often fatal, the condition is a threat to animals and people.

Determined, Davoudian and Karlan continued to enlist the assistance of others including compassionate veterinarians, Dr. David Robertson, from Select Equine Veterinary Services, and Dr. Krystal Burns, from PAC. “We had everything set up, but no place to go,” noted Karlan, referring to having the vets, a portable x-ray machine, and other materials, as well as transport, on stand-by to help the deer and move him to a rehab facility when needed.

Through a referral by Anna Reams, the Founder of Wildlife Care of Southern California, the team grew to include California Fish and Wildlife Warden Elia Piedra, who was key in saving Houdini’s life.

Warden Piedra explained to WAN that she became more concerned for the deer after viewing the footage taken several weeks after the initial videos. The wire cable was now moving down from the antlers to around his neck. He was also limping on his front right leg.

Ring camera footage and images from Aren Youssefians and Alex Hill

This past Saturday night, Houdini appeared again on the ring camera, prompting the team to assemble, watch, and wait for hours.

While members of the team left around midnight, Warden Piedra and now Warden Bagmanian stayed throughout the night and into the early morning hours. After battling the challenging terrain and hiking numerous times through the dense brush up to the other very steep hillside, they found Houdini asleep. Warden Piedra was then able to use a dart to immobilize the deer so they could help him.

“Removing the antlers was the quickest and safest way to free him. What we thought was netting and rope around the antlers, ended up being metal mesh and cable. So, unwrapping it was impossible,” explained Warden Piedra. “Warden Bagmanian sawed off the antlers while I kept the buck’s head still and monitored his breathing through the process.”

Photo from California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Warden Piedra

It was around 3:06am on Sunday morning when Youssefians and Hill received a text from Warden Piedra that included a picture of the buck without his antlers and the message, “We got him, he’s free!”

“The second that his antlers were off,” Warden Piedra told WAN, “Warden Bagmanian and I literally shouted and gave each other a high five. We knew that he was now going to be ok. And, he was happily snoring throughout the entire ordeal!”

The online community was also thrilled with the news. According to Youssefians, one person replied to the update that she “woke up with tears of joy,” while another commented that “with 2020 being such a chaotic year, this is the best news!”

Ring camera footage and images from Aren Youssefians and Alex Hill

When questioned about what advice Warden Piedra would give to the public to avoid another situation like this, she said, “Just to be aware that we are cohabitating with wildlife. Make a little extra effort to ensure that items like what was wrapped around this buck’s antlers are not just left lying around. It’s not only a hazard to wildlife, but to people as well.”

Dr. Burns, who, as a veterinary student, worked with a team in South Africa that darted deer and giraffes before safely relocating them to safer locations, also said that people should remember that they need to coexist with the animals now that the wildfires have destroyed most of their natural habitat. Be kind and compassionate.

WAN is thrilled to share an update that Houdini the deer has been spotted with some of his friends after being saved. He appears to be healthy and happy. 

WAN appreciates and applauds everyone who contributed to saving Houdini’s life. This is a powerful example of a compassionate community uniting to help an animal in need. 

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

The post WAN Exclusive: A Heroic Community Unites In Months-Long Effort To Save An Injured Deer Whose Antlers Were Tangled In Wire Mesh appeared first on World Animal News.

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‘Save A Life This Thanksgiving, Adopt A Turkey’ Billboard Campaign Launched By Peace 4 Animals & WAN In LA To Support Farm Sanctuary

Peace 4 Animals, World Animal News (WAN), and Farm Sanctuary are once again encouraging people to make the compassionate choice for the holidays by adopting a turkey rather than eating one for Thanksgiving dinner.

“We began the ‘Save A Life This Thanksgiving, Adopt A Turkey’ billboard campaign after realizing that something needed to be done to raise awareness about the estimated 46 million turkeys who are killed in the United States for Thanksgiving alone each year,” said Katie Cleary, Founder and President of Peace 4 Animals and World Animal News. “Taking action to save the lives of animals is the most important thing that we can do to create positive change for ourselves, our planet, and of course, for the animals. This campaign, in partnership with Farm Sanctuary, sends a clear message to choose compassion on your plate and change the way we’re conditioned to think about farm animals in this country; to actually make a connection to who we are eating.”

Farm Sanctuary Adoptable Turkeys Include Venus “The Champion”

The 2020 ‘Save A Life This Thanksgiving Adopt A Turkey’ billboard is strategically located on the highly-trafficked 710 Long Beach Freeway near the Imperial Highway exit in the city of Lynwood in Los Angeles County.

Farm Sanctuary Adoptable Turkeys Include Ferris “The Hotshot”

“If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s the importance of empathy and that our choices impact the lives of others,” Farm Sanctuary President and Co-Founder Gene Baur told WAN. “If we can celebrate a more joyous ‘turkey day’ without causing unnecessary killing and suffering, why wouldn’t we? By widening our circle of compassion to include one of the most abused creatures on the planet, we can prevent the enormous harm that factory farming causes people and other animals.”

Farm Sanctuary Adoptable Turkeys Include Tutu “The Charmer”

For only $35.00, anyone from anywhere around the world can sponsor a turkey that was saved by Farm Sanctuary. The rescued turkeys are given a new life at one of the organization’s sanctuaries located in Watkins Glen, New York, or Los Angeles, California.

Farm Sanctuary Adoptable Turkeys Include Sandy “The Sweetheart”

Venus “The Champion,” Ferris “The Hotshot,” Tutu “The Charmer,” Sandy “The Sweetheart,” and Jackie “The Queen” are among Farm Sanctuary’s adoptable turkeys this year. The fee to adopt the flock is only $150.00.

Farm Sanctuary Adoptable Turkeys Include Jackie “The Queen”

“Thanksgiving and turkeys have become synonymous, but sadly, not in a way that celebrates them. At Farm Sanctuary, we’re trying to change that,” noted Farm Sanctuary’s CEO, Megan Watkins. “By highlighting the unique personalities of these birds, while also exposing the abuse that they face in an unjust food system, we inspire people to start new compassionate traditions, like adopting a rescued turkey for Thanksgiving instead of eating one.”

Farm Sanctuary will send everyone who adopts a turkey an adoption certificate that reminds people that turkeys are living, feeling beings, who deserve to be treated with kindness and compassion.

The flock

“Spreading awareness about the benefits of a plant-based diet is among the many critical issues WAN and Peace 4 Animals strive to address on a daily basis, and we welcome the opportunity to support other like-minded organizations such as Farm Sanctuary to amplify this important message,” shared Cleary. “It is more important than ever to spread compassion this year. Adopting a turkey instead of eating one on Thanksgiving is a life-changing step in the right direction towards a more compassionate world.”

Please join Peace 4 Animals, WAN, and Farm Sanctuary in making this Thanksgiving a compassionate one for ALL by sponsoring a Turkey HERE!

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WAN Exclusive With Nina Jackel, Founder Of Lady Freethinker, About Undercover Investigation Exposing Horror At Dog Meat Auction House In South Korea

Photos from Lady Freethinker

A new undercover investigation this summer by animal rights nonprofit Lady Freethinker captured footage and images of confined dogs kept and sold in what is likely the largest remaining dog meat auction in South Korea at Nakwon Auction House in the city of Namyangju.

The auction and investigation took place during the Bok Nal Dog Eating Days, believed to be the hottest days of the year, when dog meat is consumed out of a mistaken belief that it will have a cooling effect. The dogs are typically cooked as boshintang, or dog meat soup, for Bok Nal.

WAN caught up with Founder and President of Lady Freethinker, Nina Jackel, about the investigation which found more than 200 dogs in metal crates and cages yelping in fear as an auctioneer prodded them with a metal hook. The investigation documented that there were 60 numbered cages, each containing three to four dogs.

“Lady Freethinker has partnered for years with an organization in Gimpo, South Korea, called Save Korean Dogs (SKD), run by a dedicated woman named Nami Kim who rescues dogs from the dog meat trade and works with local legislators to end the industry,” Jackel told WAN, noting that they had someone on the ground to film footage of SKD’s work, when the auction house opportunity presented itself. “The videographer was so brave, and wore a hidden camera even though the facility is on high alert for animal activists.”

“The ultimate goal is to save thousands of dogs from suffering at this facility by exposing what happens there,” noted Jackel, who wants officials to close down this auction house, which is most-likely operating illegally by not following regulations. “Our partner Nami, has already met with the mayor’s office following the release of the investigation, and is planning more visits.”

Unfathomably, South Korea remains the only country in the world with large-scale, commercial dog meat farms despite a decline in consumer demand for the meat by locals. The Korean Animal Welfare Association found in a 2019 poll of South Koreans that just 12.2% of respondents were still eating dogs, down from 13% in 2018. And, 41% reported that they used to eat dogs but were no longer doing so, up from 39.5% in 2018.

Lady Freethinker, in partnership with Save Korean Dogs, is also currently sponsoring 20 taxi ads in the city of Paju that state that “Dogs are not food but family,” and has been conducting undercover investigations since 2018; including one that exposed a dogfight breeder in Chile, which resulted in the strongest-ever sentence for animal cruelty in the nation.

While most major dog meat auction houses in South Korea have closed, Nakwon Auction House is believed to be the largest one remaining. The deplorable auction house is operating in a residential area and is advertised as a dog breeding facility. 

Please sign the petition urging Namyangju Mayor Cho Kwang-han to shut Nakwon Auction House down for good, HERE!

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

The post WAN Exclusive With Nina Jackel, Founder Of Lady Freethinker, About Undercover Investigation Exposing Horror At Dog Meat Auction House In South Korea appeared first on World Animal News.

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