Jon Patch

Jon Patch

Graduated from Penn State University in 1983 and landed my first broadcasting job at the flagship station to SUN Radio Network in St. Petersburg, FL as a producer of talk radio.  In 3 months advanced to a network producer, then on air as a national eventually local weather reporter for the Tampa Bay area.  Held a position in management as a trainer to new hosts and producers and later Affiliate Relations Manager, eventually in 1990 started hosting, Talkin’ Pets.  Left SUN radio several years later and worked with USA Radio Networks for 1 year.  Have now been working with Business TalkRadio & Lifestyle TalkRadio Networks for the past 12 years under the title of Affiliate Relations and am still hosting the largest and longest running pet radio and internet show in the country, Talkin’ Pets, for the past 20 years…  My one true passion in life is to help to educate the world through interviews with celebrities like Betty White, Tippi Hedren, Bob Barker, Linda Blair and others, authors, foundations and organizations like the ASPCA, LCA, HSUS, AHA, WSPA on the ways to make this world a better place for all animals and mankind in which share this very fragile and mysterious planet called earth.  The only home we have so we all need to learn how to share and maintain it so that life for us all continues and evolves forever...

WASHINGTON—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today applauds the U.S. House of Representatives for passing a provision to crack down on animal fighting in the Farm Bill conference report.  This provision will make attending an animal fight a federal offense and criminalize bringing a child to an animal fight. This version of the bill also excludes the dangerous King Amendment, which would have had potentially devastating impacts for state animal protection laws across the country. The Farm Bill conference report must now be passed by the Senate before being presented to the president for his signature.

“Animal fighting and those who fuel this horrific form of cruelty will not be tolerated in our society,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations. “Children need protection from the dangerous culture of animal fighting, as well as its associated illegal activities such as drugs, weapons and gambling. The ASPCA applauds the House for passing this measure as part of the Farm Bill to combat animal fighting and protect public safety.”

The provision included in the Farm Bill will strengthen federal animal fighting laws by making attending an animal fight a federal offense as well as imposing penalties for bringing a child to an animal fight. This provision is similar to the Animal Fighting Spectator Prohibition Act (S. 666 / H.R. 366), standalone legislation with strong bipartisan support in both chambers.

“In addition to strengthening laws against animal fighting,” Perry added, “with this Farm Bill, Congress rejects the King Amendment, an incredible federal power-grab that could have prevented states from passing their own laws to protect animals.  The ASPCA thanks our leaders in Congress for standing up for animals and states’ rights.”

The King Amendment, introduced by Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), would have gutted state animal cruelty laws across the country and prevented states from passing their own laws regarding the production of “agricultural products”—a term so sweeping it could have included farm animals, dogs in puppy mills, and many other commercial enterprises involving animals. As a result, improved humane standards and animal welfare laws at the state level would have been negated.

For more information on the ASPCA and to join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade, please visit www.aspca.org.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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1.8 Million Acres of Land Now Protected in Iconic Antisana Region

http://www.abcbirds.org/newsandreports/releases/140124.html

Andean Condor by Murray Cooper


(Washington, D.C., January 24, 2014) About half of Ecuador’s rare Andean Condors, among the world’s largest flying birds, will be better protected through a just-completed, 7,000-acre conservation land purchase in Ecuador. The acquisition will be owned and managed by Ecuador’s Fundación Jocotoco and adds to government’s ongoing efforts to conserve the valuable landscape surrounding the iconic Antisana Volcano.


The newly acquired property, called Hacienda Antisanilla, is located on the western slopes of the Antisana Volcano in central Ecuador. It sits at the edge of the Greater Antisana area, one of the largest wilderness areas in Ecuador, located only about 30 miles southeast of the capital city of Quito. The purchased land will become part of the buffer area surrounding the Antisana Ecological Reserve, a spectacular 350,000-acre area of high-altitude forests and páramo grasslands.


“The condor is an extremely important bird for Ecuador, much like the Bald Eagle is for the United States,” said Rocio Merino, Executive Director of Fundación Jocotoco. “It is a symbol of the country and is even on the national coat-of-arms. Without question, it captures the imagination of Ecuadorians unlike any other animal. Protecting it was a major motivating force behind so many people coming together to make this happen.”


“The purchase and ownership of Antisanilla completes the protection of one more key piece in the region’s conservation mosaic,” said George Fenwick, President of the American Bird Conservancy, one of the key supporters of the acquisition. “It will serve to safeguard Ecuador’s most important population of Andean Condors and will significantly aid efforts to continue growing a thriving and self-sustaining ecotourism program in the country.”


The land purchase became a priority following the remarkable discovery that the most significant population of Andean Condors north of southern Peru and Bolivia was on Hacienda Antisanilla. Up to 30 condors nest and roost on the cliffs at Antisanilla, representing over 50 percent of the condor population in all of Ecuador. This discovery quickly became a high-profile issue that was remarkably coincidental with Hacienda Antisanilla being for sale. The partners jumped at the opportunity to protect the land in perpetuity.


“The leadership within Ecuador has been tremendous including the Centro de Rescate Ilitio and Grupo Nacional de Trabajo del Condor Andino, which has supported this project with vital resources to benefit the entire country,” said Francisco Sornoza, Conservation Director of Fundación Jocotoco.


The purchase is important for several reasons in addition to protecting the condor. The region protects a vital source of water for the residents of Quito. The site’s proximity to the capital has resulted in it becoming a rapidly developing area, putting significant pressure on natural areas and resources. Those development forces clash with the preservation of tropical Andean cloud forests and grasslands such as those found in the Antisana region, which contain remarkable species richness, high levels of endemism, and multitudes of rare and endangered species. Although not as rich in diversity as the Amazon Basin, these lands are inhabited by numerous rare and endemic species of fauna and flora and are extremely fragile because plants grow so slowly in the tropical alpine climate.






Grazing and fire pose threats to the páramo ecosystem at higher elevations, and the new reserve will act to limit these impacts. For instance, cattle will be gradually removed from sensitive areas and replaced with south American camelids such as llamas and alpacas through a reintroduction program. In this way, permanent food availability for Andean Condors will be ensured while the grassland ecosystem is restored.


“Fortunately, the protection of this new property will buffer the Antisana Reserve and help control access to the land. Gradually, this will reverse the process of ecosystem degradation caused by fire. It will also help limit illegal hunting that has impacted populations of important wildlife,” said Benjamin Skolnik, American Bird Conservancy’s Ecuador Director.


Those species include major predators such as puma, Andean wolf, mountain tapir, and spectacled bear. In addition to hosting the Andean Condor, these páramo areas are also important to Silvery Grebe and Andean Ibis, now considered a separate species from the more-common Black-faced Ibis. The lakes, marshes, and bogs provide important habitat for both resident and migratory shorebirds, as well as many special waterfowl.

“This integrated conservation area incorporates one of the largest elevation gradients in the world, stretching from 3,900 to 18,875 feet above sea level. This range of elevations within protected areas is critically important in a time of climate change,” said ABC’s Fenwick.


Antisana bridges two adjacent protected areas, both of them also very large: Cayambe Coca Ecological Reserve to the north and Sumaco National Park to the east. Together with Antisana, this conservation mosaic safeguards an area larger than the state of Delaware—an extraordinary 1.8 million acres of critically important and diverse Andean and Amazonian habitat.


“The acquisition of Hacienda Antisanilla helps protect not only the specific biodiversity values of the area, it also provides a critical strengthening and safeguarding of the connections and corridors to other protected areas,” said Jocotoco’s Merino.


http://www.abcbirds.org/picts/newsandreports/antisanilla_map.jpg





The Antisanilla property also presents a remarkable tourism and economic opportunity. Over the past 10 years, Jocotoco has developed a birdwatching and ecotourism program that now hosts 10,000 visitors each year to its reserves, with over 70 percent of the visitors being Ecuadorian. The program directly or indirectly employs more than 40 people in rural areas, and income from tourism covers nearly 20 percent of the foundation’s operating budget. Proximity to Quito will allow weekend visitors to experience the exceptional beauty of the high-elevation grasslands and to witness the inspiring flight of the condor. The neighboring Guaytara property operates a restaurant and hotel from which guests can easily access the new Antisanilla Reserve.


The acquisition coincides with the first successful release of an Andean Condor in Ecuador with a satellite transmitter. After rescue and rehabilitation, “Felipe,” a young condor, was released with fanfare and tracked remotely by biologists from The Peregrine Fund, Centro de Rescate Ilitio, Universidad San Francisco, and Jocotoco.



“Demonstrating the amazing range of these birds, in just the first week, the condor traveled more than 93 miles and soared over volcanoes in three different provinces,” said Hernan Vargas, The Peregrine Fund’s research biologist based in Ecuador. This project has catalyzed interest in convening an effort to implement a species action plan for the Andean Condor in Ecuador to address its decline. The plan will be implemented by the National Andean Condor Work Group, which includes Jocotoco among its members.

Antisana is one of the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) sites of Ecuador, due to the presence of three species of threatened frogs in the genus Pristimantis.


The private and governmental groups who worked to assist Jocotoco in its effort to protect this crucial area for conservation include:




In Ecuador:

Centro de Rescate Ilitio

Grupo Nacional de Trabajo del Condor Andino (GNTCA)

Estudio Jurídico Gallegos y Asociados

The Peregrine Fund - Ecuador

Cabañas San Isidro
EcoFondo
Empresa Municipal de Alcantarillado Agua Potable (EMAAP)
Estación Científica Yanayacu
Familia Vallejo, Hacienda Guáytara
Ministerio del Ambiente, Government of Ecuador
Ministerio del Turismo, Government of Ecuador
Municipio de Quito
Museo Ecuatoriano de Ciencias Naturales
Parque Zoólogico de Guayllabamba



International:


Paul G. Allen Foundation

American Bird Conservancy
Blue Moon Foundation
Butler Foundation

Global Wildlife Conservation
March Foundation

The Peregrine Fund – US

Rainforest Trust
Andrew Sabin Family Foundation
Robert Wilson Trust   
World Land Trust


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American Bird Conservancy (ABC) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit membership organization whose mission is to conserve native birds and their habitats throughout the Americas. ABC acts by safeguarding the rarest species, conserving and restoring habitats, and reducing threats, while building capacity in the bird conservation movement.


Fundación Jocotoco is an Ecuadorian nongovernmental organization established in 1998 to protect land of critical importance to the conservation of Ecuador’s endangered birds and associated biodiversity. The foundation primarily achieves this by purchasing lands and managing them as ecological reserves.


Vincent duets with Willie Nelson on new project;
set to appear on The Today Show on February 1 & 2

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (January 27, 2014) – Rhonda Vincent – the fiery vocalist, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter dubbed “the new queen of bluegrass” by the Wall Street Journal – is set to release her new two-disc album Only Me on January 28, 2014.  In addition to receiving an unprecedented seven consecutive “Female Vocalist of the Year” awards from the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA), being named IBMA’s 2001 “Entertainer of the Year,” and being the co-author of the 2004 IBMA “Song of the Year,” Vincent was nominated for a 2006 Grammy® award for “Best Bluegrass Album” for Ragin’ Live, as well as a double nomination in 2007 for “Best Bluegrass Album” for All American Bluegrass Girl, along with “Best Country Collaboration with Vocals” for Midnight Angel featuring Bobby Osborne.  

Since her debut, Rhonda has met with increasing acclaim for her dynamic, infectious take on bluegrass. Her gift for balancing classic bluegrass sounds with subtle contemporary touches is featured throughout music. Gleaming with hope, resilience, and gratitude, Rhonda presents a set of songs that range from timelessly straight-ahead bluegrass to classic country. Joining her on the album is Willie Nelson on the title track, Daryle Singletary featured on “We Must Have Been Out of Our Minds”, and members of Diamond Rio.

“When Rhonda Vincent opens her mouth, it’s great… whether she’s singing country or bluegrass. This collection of songs on “Only Me” is incredible. God gave Rhonda an unbelievable voice and I am so thankful that we get to enjoy it. I love her like a sister and enjoy her music as her biggest fan,” says Dolly Parton.

Currently nominated for six SPBGMA awards including Entertainer of the Year, Rhonda continues to be a trailblazer for the genre. Rhonda Vincent & The Rage are the most awarded band in bluegrass history with 88 industry awards.

As part of the promotional blitz for Only Me, Rhonda will be featured in a special two-part Today Show segment that was taped in Nashville (not sure which day Rhonda appears, as of press time), as well as RFD’s Cumberland Highlanders, GAC Top 20 Countdown, RFD’s Rural Evening News, CMT.com, Country Weekly, Bluegrass Unlimited, Huffington Post, the Tennessean, Woodsongs, Billboard, The Boot, Bluegrass Today, AOL, and much more.

Track Listing:
Disc One/Bluegrass
1.   Busy City
2.   I’d Rather Hear I Don’t Love You (Than Nothing At All)
3.   Only Me (Featuring Willie Nelson)
4.   I Need Somebody Bad Tonight
5.   We Must Have Been Out of Our Minds (Featuring Daryle Singletary)
6.   It’s Never Too Late

Disc Two/Country
1.    Teardrops Over You
2.    Once A Day
3.    Beneath Still Waters
4.    Bright Lights & Country Music
5.    When The Grass Grows Over Me
6.    Drivin’ Nails

Learn more about Rhonda Vincent at www.rhondavincent.com

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/rhondavincentofficial
Twitter: @rhondavincent13

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Friday, 24 January 2014 16:19

Gimme Shelter

Day 28 Films, Rishon Films and Roadside Attractions present a PG-13, 95 minute, drama, directed and written by Ron Krauss with a theater release date of January 24, 2014.

Over 1.9 million kids have been given the opportunity to have a better school experience through the Pets in the Classroom grant program, and the number is on the rise.  The program, which provides funding to pre-K through 8th grade teachers across the country to purchase and maintain classroom pets, has awarded over 15,250 grants to teachers this year alone, impacting students by boosting their self-esteem, giving them excitement for learning, teaching them responsibility, or simply giving them a friend.  And with the beginning of the 2nd semester just setting in, we hope that more teachers will discover the positive impact classroom pets can have.

Please take a moment to read the press release below, outlining the goals of the Pets in the Classroom grant program and the strides we have made so far.  We would appreciate your help in letting teachers know about the grant so we can continue to help positively impact our youth through classroom pets!

 

Pet Care Trust offers Cure to 2nd Semester Boredom through Classroom Pets

Grants available to eligible Pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade teachers nationwide

With teachers facing cold weather blues and 2nd semester tedium, one organization is ready to help provide some excitement and warmth to classrooms across the country. The Pet Care Trust is once again aiding teachers in obtaining an important educational tool in 2014: classroom pets.

The Pet Care Trust's Pets in the Classroom grant program will continue to provide grants in 2014 to Pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade teachers in both private and public schools for the purpose of purchasing and maintaining classroom pets.  Classroom animals are wonderful resources for teachers that, when incorporated into lesson plans, can make learning fun in any subject. Plus, studies have shown that caring for pets has a positive effect on children, improving school attendance and teaching children responsibility, as well as encouraging nurturing and building self esteem.

The grant program, which began in 2010, has awarded over38,000 grants to teachers, with over 15,250 of them being awarded this school year.  This equates to over 1.9 million kids who have been given the opportunity to have a better school experience through the Pets in the Classroom grant program. With a goal of introducing 5 million children in 100,000 classrooms to pets and the benefits they provide, the Trust hopes that the 2013-2014 school year will continue to see a large number of grant applicants.

“We are delighted with the continued growth of the Pets in the Classroom program,” commented Pet Care Trust Executive Director Steve King. “Teachers tell us every day that introducing a pet into their classroom has increased students’ enthusiasm for school, improved in-class behavior and added an element of fun into their daily routine. We are committed to helping every teacher who wants a classroom pet to get one.”

Many school teachers have very limited resources for the support of classroom animals, and the Pet Care Trust believes in supporting teachers with this educational grants program. Teachers can apply for a direct, no-hassle grant through the Pets in the Classroom website (www.PetsintheClassroom.org). The program offers different types of grants, giving each teacher the opportunity to choose which grant is right for him or her.

For more information on the Pets in the Classroom grant program, visit www.PetsintheClassroom.org.

(SCHAUMBURG, Illinois) January 21, 2014—Is the worst part of cuddling with your pet its bad breath? This could be a sign of looming dental problems. Preventive veterinary dental care can save you money in the long run. Pet Dental Health Month, sponsored by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) every February, reminds pet owners that brushing their pet’s teeth is good for both your pet’s health and your budget.

“It’s something you do every morning, part of your daily routine—brush your teeth. While most people take care of their own mouths, they often forget that they also should take care of their pet’s teeth through a regular dental health care regimen,” explains Dr. Clark K. Fobian, president of the AVMA. “One of the most common problems veterinarians see in pets is dental disease, and, unfortunately, these issues can get serious if untreated. I remind pet owners that an untreated dental infection can spread to the heart, kidneys and other organs, and suddenly become life threatening. Practicing good dental hygiene at home, in addition to regular dental cleanings by your veterinarian, is the most efficient and cost-effective way to keep your pets healthy, comfortable and pain-free.”

According to a 2013 analysis conducted by VPI Pet Insurance, the average cost to prevent dental disease in pets is $171.82, but it costs $531.71 to treat dental disease.

Resources and information for Pet Dental Health Month:

“We brush our teeth each day, and daily oral hygiene is recommended for dogs and cats from the time the permanent teeth erupt,” explains Dr. Jan Bellows, president of the American Veterinary Dental College. “Brushing is the gold standard, and many dogs and some cats will tolerate having their teeth brushed if the introduction to brushing is managed gently and gradually. In addition, several companion animal nutrition companies offer dental diets.  The texture of those foods generates a mechanical cleansing effect on the surface of the tooth as the pet is eating. Dental treats such as chews can also be effective, either mechanically by scraping the tooth surface or by chemically removing excess calcium in saliva that could otherwise be deposited on the teeth as calculus. There are also plaque-retardant products available in the form of a water additive, spray, gel or dentifrice, and products that are used to seal the surface of the teeth to prolong the beneficial effect of professional dental scaling. Talk to your veterinarian for more advice about preventing dental disease in your pets.”

While regular dental checkups are essential to help maintain your pet’s dental health, there are a number of signs that dental disease has already started. If you notice any of the symptoms below, take your pet into your veterinarian immediately:

●          Red swollen gums and brownish teeth.

●          Bad breath—Most pets have breath that is less than fresh, but if it becomes truly repugnant, similar to the smell of a rotten egg, it’s a sign that periodontal disease has already started.

●          Bleeding from the mouth.

●          Frequent pawing or rubbing at the face and/or mouth.

●          Reluctance to eat hard foods—for example, picking it up and then spitting it out.

For more information about your pet’s dental health, consult your veterinarian. Visit Pet Dental Health Month for additional resources and links.

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The AVMA, founded in 1863, is one of the oldest and largest veterinary medical organizations in the world, with more than 85,000 member veterinarians worldwide engaged in a wide variety of professional activities and dedicated to the art and science of veterinary medicine.

West Virginia is one of only eight states that lack any substantive restrictions for wild and exotic animals kept by private individuals

Washington, DC, January 21, 2014 -- Born Free USA, a leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, applauds West Virginia state senator Bob Beach (D- Monongalia) for introducing S.B. 371 -- “Prohibiting Possession of Wild and Exotic Animals.”  The bill seeks to improve animal welfare and protect the public from potentially dangerous exotic animals by enacting stricter regulations on exotic animal ownership. West Virginia is one of only eight states that lack any substantive restrictions for wild and exotic animals kept by private individuals, and Senator Beach’s bill would fix this glaring and dangerous legal oversight.

Adam Roberts, Executive Vice President of Born Free USA said, “The exotic pet trade is immeasurably cruel to wild animals. These so-called ‘pets,’ endure miserable conditions in captivity – they are usually locked up, isolated, and deprived of the ability to express their natural behaviors. Private owners often extract their teeth and fingernails, among other barbaric practices, in an attempt to ‘tame’ them.  Wild animals belong in the wild and can never be tamed. We cannot allow animals to be mutilated in the name of so-called companionship.”

S.B. 371 would ban the private possession of all “wild and exotic animals” in West Virginia, which are defined as any animals other than domestics and livestock. Exotic animals owned prior to the enactment of this bill can be kept, as long as the owner obtains a permit. The bill is narrowly crafted to ensure that only private owners are affected.  This bill does not apply to accredited exhibitors, nonprofits, animal control agencies, wildlife rehabilitators, veterinary clinics, sanctuaries, researchers, or educational institutions.

“It is time for West Virginia to follow the lead of 42 other states and pass legislation regulating exotic pet ownership,” said Roberts. “Senator Beach has made a powerful statement by introducing this bill, and I hope these long-overdue safeguards are implemented in West Virginia.”

These safeguards are crucial not only for animal welfare, but also for the protection of communities. Born Free USA maintains a database that tracks incidents involving exotic pets (www.bornfreeusa.org/database). Since 2000, there have been at least seven reported incidents in West Virginia of exotic pets escaping and threatening public safety.  In Huntington, a 13-year-old girl suffered injuries after being bitten by a “pet” capuchin monkey. In Berkeley County, another monkey who was suspected of having hepatitis B bit three children. Wild and exotic animals can not only injure people, but also pose a disease risk. Primates alone can transmit Ebola, tuberculosis, and herpes-B to humans.

Born Free USA is a nationally recognized leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation, and public education, Born Free USA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and the destructive international wildlife trade.  Born Free USA brings to America the message of “compassionate conservation” -- the vision of the U.K.-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film Born Free, along with their son Will Travers, now CEO of both organizations. Born Free’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally.  More at www.bornfreeusa.org, at Twitter www.twitter.com/bornfreeusa, and on Facebook facebook.com/bornfreeusa.


January 21, 2014, LOS ANGELES, CA – Lion Ark, the feature length documentary about the rescue of 25 lions from cruel circuses in Bolivia, has been nominated by America’s oldest and largest civil rights organization, the NAACP, in their Outstanding International Motion Picture category for the 45th NAACP Image Awards.

The prestigious Image Awards by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) celebrates "the outstanding achievements and performances of people of color in the arts, as well as those individuals or groups who promote social justice through their creative endeavors."

Others up for awards this year in different categories include Beyoncé, John Legend, Halle Berry, Oprah Winfrey, Justin Timberlake, Jennifer Hudson, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Forest Whitaker.

Lion Ark follows a dangerous and ambitious international animal rescue as illegal circuses are tracked down across Bolivia and the animals saved, culminating in a huge airlift of 25 lions to safety in the U.S. Behind the huge logistical task a group of people from America, Britain, Bolivia, Peru and Colombia come together to help the lions.

Actress Jorja Fox, world famous for her role as Sara Sidle in CSI, is an associate Producer of Lion Ark and also appears in the film: “What I didn’t realize was that it was going to be an extraordinary story about the human spirit and what the human spirit can do when people come together.”

Early in the film, Jan Creamer, President and founder of Animal Defenders International, the organization behind the rescue, explains the rescuers’ motivation: “People sometimes ask, why bother about animals when there’s so much human suffering? But it is not a choice of one or the other. When we protect the weakest or the most vulnerable, whether it is animals or people, we all gain. That’s how we shape our world…understanding our connection with other species, and our place on this planet, is the next step in human evolution.”

Tim Phillips, Director of Lion Ark“We are honored to have been nominated for this award. Lion Ark is a film about respect for people and animals so we are really pleased to receive this acknowledgement. In this film, you see the worst of humanity, but also humanity at its best. It is an empowering film that shows that people can make a difference. Lion Ark shows how animal protection is a vital part of the fabric of social justice, where human society draws a line as to what is, and is not, acceptable.”

The film shows how Bolivians got behind the rescue mission and in one scene a Bolivian Government official makes references to how some international non-governmental organizations can be heavy handed when working in poorer countries. Wildlife official David Kopp says: “Some international organizations think this is a poor country, a small, corrupt country and you can come in here and do what you like, but that’s not true. We’re looking for respect and coordinated work. Then we can do big things, like this.”

In addition to Lion Ark the other five nominees in the Outstanding International Motion Picture category are:
War Witch; Call Me Kuchu; La Playa D.C.; High Tech, Low Life.

Nominated for Outstanding Motion Picture are:
12 Years a Slave; Lee Daniel’s The Butler; Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom; Fruitvale Station; The Best Man Holiday.

Members of the NAACP have until February 14th to vote for the nominated movies for the Image Awards, with the award ceremony taking place on the 21st and 22nd of February. The glittering awards ceremony in Los Angeles has, in the past, been hosted by luminaries such as Denzel Washington, Diana Ross, Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Whitney Houston.

The Image Awards http://www.naacpimageawards.net

Lion Ark http://www.lionarkthemovie.com

Since Bolivia prohibited the use of animals in traveling circuses, 4 other South American countries have followed – Peru, Ecuador, Colombia and Paraguay. And in Europe, countries like Greece, Austria, Croatia and Portugal have implemented similar measures. Countries like China and Taiwan are grappling with this issue of animal protection. 

Over 25 countries have banned animal circuses, representing a huge range of cultures and socio economic circumstances; there is a worldwide movement that animals should not be made to suffer, just to amuse us.

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See the Lion Ark Trailer online at: www.lionarkthemovie.com


Lion Ark: More action adventure than traditional documentary, Lion Ark follows the world’s most ambitious and daring animal rescue, with a narrative compiled from film, interviews, conversations and reactions as events unfolded. How attitudes to animals were changed in Bolivia, illegal circuses pursued and closed, and 25 lions airlifted to freedom.

Lion Ark Film Festival Selections include: Winner Best Documentary (Jury Award), Sun & Sand Film & Music Festival, Mississippi; Winner Audience Choice Best Documentary, San Diego Film Festival; Audience Choice Award Anchorage International Film Festival; Official Selection Raindance Film Festival, London; Official Selection Mill Valley Film Festival; Official Selection Hawaii International Film Festival; Official Selection Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival; Official Selection Virginia Film Festival; Official Selection Starz Denver Film Festival; Official Selection Irvine International Film Festival; Official Selection Beloit International Film Festival; Official Selection Sedona International Film Festival.

NAACP: Founded in 1909, the NAACP is America’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. From the ballot box to the classroom, the thousands of dedicated workers, organizers, leaders and members who make up the NAACP continue to fight for social justice for all Americans. The mission of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is to ensure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate race-based discrimination.

WHAT CRITICS ARE SAYING ABOUT LION ARK
“a spunky account of a perilous rescue mission...Lion Ark proceeds with refreshing unpredictability.”
– Jeannette Catsoulis, The New York Times

“Compelling cinema verité”
– Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter

“If you enjoy movies filled with suspense, thrills, surprises, adventure and action, put Lion Ark on your must-see list. For me, Lion Ark is the feel-good movie of the year!”
– Betty Jo Tucker, Reel Talk

“heartwarming, beautiful and inspirational. It reminds you of the majestic power of documentary filmmaking and it’s ability to stir true emotion.”
– Justin Bozung, Shock Cinema Magazine / Mondo Film & Video Guide

“…this film should be a target for this year’s Oscars. Excellent.”
ACED Magazine

“Lion Ark is through and through entertaining…be ready for some up-tempo action-adventure of the most thrilling variety: real-life.”
Stark Insider

thoroughly rewarding...”
– TV and Film Review

“Lion Ark is an awe-inspiring journey that grips and engages”
– Britflicks

“Lion Ark takes an already incredible and unforgettable story and breathes life and passion and transformation into it...one of your must-see films of 2013.”
– The Independent Critic

“A consciousness-raising milestone of a documentary”
– Edgar Vaid, The Ecologist

“will restore some faith in humanity”
– JM Willis, Shockya.com

“Lion Ark is a film that will grab your attention and your heart”
– Alexis Higgins, CMR Movie Reviews and News

“ultimately an uplifting story. It’s a revealing documentary with a lot of heart.”
– Jennie Kermode, Eye For Film

“AMAZING! Viewers will be crying tears of joy throughout...”
– Renee Snyder, International Animal Welfare Examiner, The Examiner

More reviews and links to all above reviews are available here: www.lionarkthemovie.com/news/lion-ark-reviews


Animal Defenders International
6100 Wilshire Blvd.
Suite 1150
Los Angeles, California 90048
US

Fido Football and Game Day Festivities will Benefit Homeless Pets

 

 

MORRISTOWN, N.J., January 21, 2014--The "Big Game" is coming to New Jersey and Morris Animal Inn is celebrating with a football game of its own for Fido. The Barker Bowl will be celebrated on Tuesday, January 28 and will feature a four-legged lineup of jersey-clad canine athletes ready to play for a paws cause. Kickoff is at 10 a.m.

Doggie tackles, ball tugs and touchdowns will highlight the spirited competition. With traditional “Big Game” fanfare, Morris Animal Inn will transform its outdoor play yard into a stadium-like atmosphere complete with a pooch-sized playing field, goal posts and a “tail-gating” area for fans. Morris Animal Inn staff will serve as referees and score keepers.

A portion of the proceeds from the Barker Bowl will benefit the Animal Welfare Federation of New Jersey (AWFNJ). Incorporated in 1995, the AWFNJ acts as a unifying voice for the animal protection community. The AWFNJ advocates on animal welfare legislation; encourages the enforcement of animal cruelty laws; conducts programs to elevate the quality of care for animals.

Game Day festivities will include:

Fido football, doggie touchdowns and prizes

Souvenir photo trading cards for each dog

“Tail-gating” refreshments with Bowser Beer and Puppy Pretzels

Souvenir take-home hot dog and hamburger squeaky toys

 

To reserve your dog’s spot in the line-up, call 973-539-0377 ext. 5. Reservations must be made in advance and are $59 for the entire day. For information, visit www.morrisanimalinn.com.

 

ABOUT MORRIS ANIMAL INN

Morris Animal Inn is a full-service, luxury pet resort for dogs and cats located in Morristown, NJ. Established in 1960, the award-winning country inn is a state-of-the-art facility that offers lodging, spa services, grooming, day care and camp. For more information call 973-539-0377 or visit www.morrisanimalinn.com.

 

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Dogs transported to Kentucky Humane Society for medical treatment, temporary sheltering
Nancy, Ky.—The ASPCA® (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®), at the request of the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office and Pulaski County Attorney's Office, is assisting in the removal, transport, sheltering and medical treatment of more than 40 dogs from a large, substandard breeding facility—frequently referred to as a puppy mill—called Dream Catcher Kennels in Nancy, Ky. The Kentucky Humane Society (KHS) is supporting the ASPCA with the removal of the animals as well as the medical triage and sheltering operation.
The dogs—ranging from Chihuahuas to bloodhounds—were discovered living in filthy, deplorable conditions. Many have untreated medical issues and were found living with little or no shelter in below freezing temperatures.
Dennis Bradley, 61, the owner and operator of Dream Catcher Kennels, is scheduled to appear in Pulaski District Court on January 22 where he is expected to enter a guilty plea to the charge of cruelty to animals in the second degree, an offense with which he was charged with earlier this year after local authorities received numerous complaints about the conditions at Dream Catcher Kennels. As part of the plea deal, Mr. Bradley has surrendered the dogs at his facility and will face six months in jail probated for a term of 24 months. He will not be allowed to operate a kennel or breeding operation for the duration of his probation.
“We commend Deputy Glen Bland for his tireless work and efforts, along with the ASPCA, to bring Mr. Bradley to justice for operating a facility which exposed so many dogs to the deplorable conditions they were forced to live in,” said Sheriff Todd Wood with the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office. “The collaboration between law enforcement and the ASPCA enabled our agencies to save these dogs from certain demise, and I applaud the ASPCA for being a voice for these animals who otherwise would not receive the care and attention they so desperately need.”
Pulaski County Attorney Martin Hatfield added, “We are delighted to partner with the ASPCA in the investigation and prosecution of this case. Their role has provided valuable resources which have allowed us to not only fully pursue prosecution of those responsible for operating this puppy mill, but just as importantly, the ability to remove, treat and shelter the affected animals.”
“People who run facilities like this are interested in making a profit, not in the well-being of the animals,” said Kathryn Destreza, director of Investigations for ASPCA Field Investigations and Response. “As is true for most puppy mill dogs, these dogs appear to have gone most of their lives without basic necessities or much exposure to humans. We hope to give these dogs much-needed medical treatment and place them quickly into new homes where they can learn what it means to be a pet.”
The ASPCA and KHS have established a temporary shelter in Louisville, Ky. where the dogs will receive veterinary exams and care with supplies provided by PetSmart Charities, Inc. Once medical assessments are complete, the ASPCA Anti-Cruelty Behavior Team will begin behavior evaluations and provide socialization and enrichment with support from the KHS before placing them with local and national animal welfare groups to be made available for adoption.
“The Kentucky Humane Society’s veterinary, shelter services and behavior teams will work with the ASPCA to provide the medical attention, behavior help and love these dogs need,” said KHS President and CEO Lori Redmon. “After the ASPCA determines the dogs are healthy and behaviorally sound, we will help them find loving, permanent homes for these dogs.”
The conditions at Dream Catcher Kennels originally came to light after The Humane Society of the United States submitted an undercover video to local authorities.
The ASPCA Field Investigations and Response team has rescued countless dogs from puppy mills across the nation. Furthermore, the ASPCA’s Government Relations department has been active in promoting legislation at both the state and federal levels to strengthen regulations and raise minimum standards of care for dogs in puppy mills. Kentucky is one of only 20 states without any regulations in place to protect dogs in commercial breeding facilities. Additionally, the ASPCA launched a national “No Pet Store Puppies” campaign, which seeks to raise awareness about the connection between puppy mills and pet stores and end the demand for puppy mill dogs. For more information about puppy mills and how to fight animal cruelty, visit www.nopetstorepuppies.com.
About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
About the Kentucky Humane Society
The Kentucky Humane Society (KHS), located in Louisville, KY, is a private, nonprofit organization that is Kentucky's largest pet adoption agency and oldest animal welfare organization, founded in 1884. KHS advocates the humane treatment of companion animals through leadership and proactive solutions to pet overpopulation, including adoptions, education and spay/neuter efforts. In 2013 KHS found homes for more than 6,300 cats and dogs and saved every adoptable pet it took in. The KHS S.N.I.P. Clinic provides affordable spay/neuter surgeries to more than 10,000 cats and dogs a year. Learn more at www.kyhumane.org or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.
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