HSUS sues USDA over policies that risk future pandemics

Influenza spreads within factory farms directly from animal to animal or by way of workers, flies, manure, and rodents. When thousands of animals are tightly confined it creates a recipe for disaster, in which potential pathogens can recombine and generate viral forms with the ability to infect people.

Today the Humane Society of the United States filed a federal lawsuit challenging the response plan for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (or “bird flu”) of the United States Department of Agriculture. The response plan, produced by the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service, is shortsighted and . . . 

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HSUS survey shows pet stores do brisk business selling puppy mill dogs during pandemic

If you’re looking to bring a companion animal home, please reach out to your local animal shelter. In addition to dogs and cats, shelters have a variety of small animals available, including rabbits, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs, chinchilla, ferrets and even fish. Photo by Amie Chou/The HSUS

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, shelters and rescues have pivoted swiftly to ensure that more animals get adopted and to make space for others in need. I’ve been reporting on this blog about shelters and rescue groups successfully placing animals into loving homes . . . 

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Veterinarians address pet owners’ concerns about the coronavirus

There is no evidence at present that animal companions can transmit the disease to humans, according to the CDC, the World Health Organization and the veterinary community. Photo by iStockphoto

Global and U.S. health authorities have stated that there is no evidence at this time that domestic animals can transmit the novel coronavirus to humans. But recent reports about humans transmitting the coronavirus to a handful of animals under their care (two pet dogs, a . . . 

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China’s recognition of dogs as companion animals bodes well for its animal welfare future

Today’s news from China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs announcing they have exempted dogs from its list of animals considered to be livestock for the purposes of the meat trade is an encouraging sign that China’s leadership is open to policy changes that will make the world safer for everyone. Photo by Jean Chung/For HSI

There is unprecedented focus on the challenges of animal welfare in China in the wake of COVID -19. The sharpening international scrutiny of its wildlife markets and wildlife trade will shake up animal protection policy in China and around the world. The news that a . . . 

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World Health Organization says nations should end wildlife trade

Dr. Anthony Fauci has called wildlife markets “a superhighway” for transmission of disease. Above, a wildlife market in Indonesia. Photo by Dog Meat Free Indonesia

The World Health Organization is calling on nations to end wildlife markets because of the high risk they pose for the spread of pathogens like the coronavirus that can jump from animals to humans. This week, David Nabarro, a medical doctor and the special envoy . . . 

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More than 86 million egg-laying hens in the U.S. are now cage-free

While a cage-free setting is by no means an ideal environment, it is a much better alternative to a battery cage. Photo by David Paul Morris

New federal data released this month shows the enormous progress we have made toward the goal of ending the cruel cage confinement of farm animals in the United States. More than a quarter (26.2%) of eggs produced in our nation are now cage-free, according to . . . 

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Second city in mainland China bans dog and cat meat trade

The city of Zhuhai announced that dogs and cats are not livestock meant for consumption, as part of a wider ban on eating wildlife. The ban will take effect May 1. Photo by Peter Li/HSI

A second city in mainland China has banned dog and cat meat, striking the latest in a series of blows against this cruel trade that causes immeasurable suffering and pain for millions of animals each year. The city of Zhuhai announced that dogs and cats . . . 

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Washington state plans to increase trophy hunting of cougars despite widespread public opposition

Despite public opposition, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is pushing a harmful proposal to expand trophy hunting of cougars. If you live in Washington, we encourage you to speak out against these proposals and tell the Commission you do not support trophy hunting of the state’s rare wild cats. Photo by Alamy

Every day produces ample evidence that those involved with harming and killing animals don’t take a break, even during a national emergency. And neither do we. The latest example involves a proposal to expand trophy hunting of cougars in Washington State. The Washington Department of . . . 

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Newly released footage confirms the Joe Exotic we know

Joe Exotic had a long history of breeding and dumping large numbers of big cats and bears. At his facility, it was routine to pull newborn cubs, some just hours old, from their mothers to be hand-raised so they could be readied for handling by the public. Photo by the HSUS

We’ve known “Joe Exotic” [Joe Schreibvogel) for a long while, and we know him well. This week, we’re releasing additional footage from the Humane Society of the United States investigations focusing on Joe, Doc Antle and other wild animal breeders and traders that began in . . . 

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Bipartisan congressional letter calls for end to live wildlife markets

Wildlife markets and related trade are a dangerous vector for transmission of zoonotic diseases. We applaud this bipartisan congressional letter calling for aggressive action toward a global shut down of live wildlife markets and a ban on the international trade of live wildlife that is not intended for conservation purposes. Photo by pasindu/pixabay

Consistent with the recommendations in Wildlife Markets and COVID-19, the Humane Society International report released earlier this week, and our own messaging on the pandemic, Senators Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), Representatives Mike Quigley (D-Ill.) and Michael McCaul (R-Texas) and more than sixty . . . 

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