Animal Outlook, a national nonprofit 501(c)(3) animal protection organization, has announced it has filed a lawsuit against the American Heart Association (“AHA”) over the organization’s use of its “Heart-Check” certification mark on certain meat products that purveyors pay AHA to use. As recently as August 1, 2022, an official peer-reviewed journal published on behalf of AHA recognized that “higher meat intake [is] associated with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease [ASCVD].” That same journal also acknowledged “biochemical links between dietary meat and ASCVD.” This is consonant with AHA’s past recognition of the negative effects of red meat. In 2021, for example, the AHA stated that “in general, red meats (such as beef, pork and lamb) have more saturated fat” than other protein sources. “Saturated fats can raise your blood cholesterol and increase your risk of heart disease.” Given AHA’s recognition of these health effects, Animal Outlook sent a letter to AHA in late 2021, asking the organization to stop the process of certifying these products as heart healthy in exchange for a fee, but AHA refused to do so.
This lawsuit from Animal Outlook alleges that, in exchange for a fee, AHA allows companies to display the AHA mark on certain meat products and market them as “heart healthy,” which is counter to AHA’s prior statements. The lawsuit further alleges that AHA promotes its Heart-Check certification program as using standards more stringent than the government’s standards to certify beef, when, in fact, AHA only uses the government’s minimum standards. Cheryl Leahy, Executive Director of Animal Outlook, states, “For nearly 100 years the American Heart Association has made it its mission to educate consumers on healthy living. That’s why it is so incongruous that they are now selling these pay-to-play heart healthy certifications for the very meat products they have publicly taken a position against.”
In addition to the health aspect of consuming meat, the inhumane toll that the production of animal meat takes on the animals is indisputable. The United States Department of Agriculture estimated that in 2020 over 165 million land animals were slaughtered for food in America and that figure doesn’t take into consideration chicken or fish. Addressing possible consumer confusion stemming from the endorsement, Leahy states, “It would stand to reason that consumers who see a Heart-Check certification would assume that the American Heart Association deems these products to be healthy for their heart and don’t realize that the producers pay AHA, which in turn awards the certifications.” She continues, “In our minds, the American Heart Association is doing a great disservice to the people whose health they have worked so diligently for nearly a century to protect, not to mention the treatment of animals in agriculture, and we are calling for the organization to end these misleading paid endorsements and reimburse consumers deceived by this deceptive marketing.”
Dr. John McDougall, a board-certified internist and nationally recognized nutrition expert, states, “all animal-derived foods lead to an array of human health problems.” He further states, “it’s time for the American Heart Association to stop their longtime favoritism towards the animal agriculture industries.” Animal Outlook is represented pro bono in this matter by Waymaker LLP, a boutique law firm based in Los Angeles, California.
Even if the entire world stopped burning fossil fuels today, a new study finds the Greenland ice sheet would still lose enough ice to add nearly a foot to rising sea levels.
Melting over the past century has altered the ice sheet's equilibrium, according to the study led by two glaciologists at the National Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland. For the ice sheet to correct that imbalance, it will lose an estimated 100 trillion tons of ice, adding at least 10.8 inches to global average sea levels. That’s “a very conservative rock-bottom minimum,” said Jason Box, a glaciology professor with Denmark's geological survey.
Greenland's contribution to sea level rise could be more than 2 feet within the century if the pace of warming continues, the authors reported in the journal "Nature Climate Change," even though the study doesn't attach specific time frames.
Many nations committed during the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change to hold the line on emissions to rein in rising global average temperatures, but it could be decades before the world reaches net zero emissions.
Greenland's melting ice has been a key driver of the 11-inch average sea level rise observed along U.S. coastlines over the past 100 years, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. That rate has accelerated during the past 40 years.
Any additional melting from Greenland's ice sheet would be on top of whatever global average sea rise occurs from warmer oceans, melting glaciers and ice sheet melting in Antarctica. The study is unique, the researchers said, because they used satellite measurements and personal observations rather than computer modelling typically used to make sea level rise projections.
They also looked at two extreme years, 2012 and 2018, both influenced by fluctuating pressures over the ocean known as the North Atlantic Oscillation. During 2012, the negative phase of the oscillation pushed in excess heat and Greenland saw the greatest ice melt of this century so far. During a positive phase in 2018, colder air moved over the island's west side, suppressing surface melt.
If warmer conditions such as those of 2012 occur more often, the study's co-authors said Greenland's contributions to sea level rise could double or even triple.
The ice sheet is mapped in two zones: the upper area where snow and ice accumulates, and the lower section, which receives less snow and includes the area that is melting. When one area gets larger than the other, the ice sheet becomes out of balance, scientists say. At this point, the melt zone is growing larger, and warmer temperatures are moving the line between the two zones upward, shrinking the top accumulation area.
The changes aren’t just apparent to scientists. Even casual visitors, such as wealthy tourists who take helicopter sightseeing tours, notice the freshly exposed rocks and retreating ice.
The Morris Animal Foundation (MAF) Golden Retriever Lifetime Study has achieved its 10-year milestone. This study is among the most comprehensive to be completed in veterinary medicine, following the lives of over 3,000 golden retrievers. Additionally, it’s the largest study to be funded by MAF.1
"We're proud of the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study and how it is advancing canine health," expressed Tiffany Grunert, president/CEO, in an organizational release. "It's taken an incredible amount of commitment from our Study families, partner veterinarians and, of course, our hero dogs. Without their dedication, this study simply would not be possible."1
Annually, pet owners and veterinarians complete questionnaires while veterinarians obtain biological samples at dogs’ annual visits. Plus, all dogs have been genotyped, contributing important data to better understand genetic connections with disease and health. The dedication from the study's participants offers researchers with valuable data and samples, resulting in extensive research opportunities in cancer and other realms, including1:
- Detecting molecular signatures to detect lymphoma earlier
- Exploring variations in the microbiome of dogs with and without a cancer diagnosis
- Genetic factors that affect weight gain and obesity
- The connection between DNA damage and canine lymphoma as it relates to environmental chemical exposures
- Understanding human-to-dog transmission of COVID-19 in the cohort
Since the study’s initiation, 7 scientific papers have been published, shedding lights on topics including structure of the study and a deeper look at the baseline demographics of the cohort. A 2019 paper from Embark Inc. used data from the study to display the impact of inbreeding on fertility. An additional paper examined the relationship between timing of spay/neuter and the development of obesity and non-traumatic orthopedic injury. The most recent paper focuses on environmental exposures and lymphoma risk in dogs using data from the study.
Cancer is the leading cause of death in study dogs, accounting for 75% of all deaths, according to the release.1 The largest contributor to those deaths is hemangiosarcoma, of the primary cancer endpoints. Based on current outcomes, MAF will be funding future work to create diagnostics and therapeutics, and to detect genetic contributors to hemangiosarcoma. Researchers will be able to use the samples collected from dogs diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma to possibly develop early screening and/or diagnostic tests plus understand potential genetic links.
The Golden Retriever Lifetime Study team supports collaborative research utilizing study data and samples with scientists worldwide to accelerate the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer and more canine health conditions.
"The Golden Retriever Lifetime Study is such a rich source of scientific data," added Grunert. "We're encouraged by what we have accomplished thus far but know it's the tip of the iceberg in terms of what we can learn."1
Dogs living in colder climates may be more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes, the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) reports.
To investigate the relationship between geography, seasonality, and diabetes, Penn Vet researchers gathered information on 960 dogs located across the U.S. that have been diagnosed with diabetes mellitus.
“This link is something that has been discussed in regard to humans with Type 1 diabetes, but it’s never been rigorously looked at in dogs,” says the study’s senior author, Rebecka Hess, BSc, DVM, MSCE, DACVIM, a professor at Penn Vet. “It’s important to explore because dogs and people live in the same world. If the environment—cold temperatures and seasonality—are important in this disease in both species, it gives us something to look at with further research.”
Pet owners surveyed by Penn Vet were asked to indicate their state of residence, as well as information pertaining to their dog, including the animal’s current age and its age at the time of diabetes diagnosis.
For 669 dogs, the date of diabetes diagnosis was known. Of those, 33 percent were diagnosed in the winter, compared to 24 percent in the spring, 24 percent in the summer, and 19 percent in the fall.
The North also stood out when the research team explored geography, with 46 percent of diagnoses occurring in dogs in this region (compared to 27 percent in southern states, 15 percent in central states, and 12 percent in the West).
The geographic data was particularly interesting, Penn Vet notes, because many more dogs—more than 31 million—reside in the South compared to about 24 million in the North and about 13 million each in the central and West regions.
“To be honest, I was surprised we found this connection, even though it had been hinted at before,” Dr. Hess says. “I was always skeptical of the data. When I saw our results, it was quite clear. The findings were strengthened by the fact that diabetes diagnoses were more prevalent in both the winter and the North. Results would have been more difficult to interpret if, for example, we had found increased prevalence in the winter but also in the South.”
While the underlying cause of the correlation is not known, Hess speculates the findings may relate to how the body processes either vitamin D or insulin, Penn Vet reports, adding that, in human studies, lower levels of vitamin D have been connected with an increased likelihood of diabetes.
The findings certainly suggest future research possibilities, Hess adds.
“Given the close relationship between humans and dogs, and the parallels we see when it comes to diabetes, it behooves us to look,” Hess says.
As many as 60 unvaccinated dogs in northern Michigan have died of parvovirus in recent weeks, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) reports.
Concerns surrounding incidents of a mysterious “parvo-like” illness were fist shared by the department earlier this month. Experts were initially challenged after dogs with symptoms of the disease (i.e. vomiting, bloody diarrhea, lethargy, loss of appetite) tested negative for parvo during initial screening by veterinarians, the Michigan State University Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (MSU VDL) says.
“This situation is complex because, although the dogs displayed clinical signs suggestive of parvovirus, they consistently test negative by point-of-care tests performed in clinics and shelters,” says the lab’s director Kim Dodd, DVM.
“While those tests are valuable in the clinical setting, they are not as sensitive as the diagnostic tests we can perform here in the laboratory,” she adds. “We continue to further characterize the virus in hopes of better understanding why those animals were testing negative on screening tests.”
The affected dogs do not have a history of complete vaccination, MDARD reports.
“Dogs that are not fully vaccinated against this virus are the most at risk,” says Michigan State veterinarian, Nora Wineland, DVM. “Dog owners across Michigan must work closely with their veterinarians to ensure their dogs are appropriately vaccinated and given timely boosters to keep their pets safe and healthy. Protecting Michigan’s dogs is a team effort.”
Veterinarians are encouraged to inform pet owners that canine parvovirus is not contagious to people or other species of domestic animals.
Additionally, to help ensure animals are protected, clients in Michigan and beyond should be reminded of the following:
- Keep up with routine vaccinations by ensuring dogs/puppies are vaccinated against canine parvovirus, rabies, canine distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza, and leptospirosis.
- Have dogs/puppies fully vaccinated before interacting with other animals.
- Keep dogs/puppies at home and away from other dogs if they are exhibiting any signs of illness and contact your veterinarian.
- Clean up after your pet when walking with them in public.
Michigan veterinarians are encouraged to pursue additional diagnostics at MSU VDL when screening tests for canine parvovirus are negative, but clinical presentation is consistent with infection. Those with questions about sample collection, submission, or diagnostic options are asked to contact the laboratory at 517-353-1683. Additionally, if unusual or reportable illnesses are seen, veterinarians can contact MDARD at 800-292-3939.
Veterinarians typically use commercial kits to prepare autologous conditioned serum (ACS), a regenerative therapy widely used for managing equine osteoarthritis. A new study, however, yielded surprising results, indicating that serum incubated in traditional blood collection tubes may be just as effective as using a commercial kit.* To make ACS using a commercial kit, veterinarians collect a sample of a horse’s blood and then incubate it in special tubes containing borosilicate glass beads. The resultant serum—the watery portion of the blood remaining after the red blood cells are removed—reportedly contains concentrated levels of a protein called interleukin-1 receptor agonist or IL-1Ra. The serum also contains concentrated levels of insulin growth factor-1. “IL-1Ra blocks the actions of the proinflammatory mediator interleukin-1, which is a major initiator of widespread inflammation in osteoarthritis. In turn, inflammation disrupts the delicate balance of breakdown and regeneration of healthy cartilage cells,” explained Kathleen Crandell, Ph.D., a nutritionist for Kentucky Equine Research. Studies support the beneficial effects of ACS in equine osteoarthritis, with noted improvements in clinical and microscopic changes in arthritic joints following intra-articular administration of ACS. In addition to being effective, ACS is a popular regenerative therapy due to its affordability and ease of administration, all of which makes it an appealing part of a multimodal management strategy for osteoarthritis.
“Osteoarthritis has no known cure, and no true disease-modifying treatments have been identified. Instead, veterinarians are limited to controlling the clinicals signs of disease by prescribing anti-inflammatory drugs and recommending oral joint health supplements. Products containing high-quality glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and hyaluronic acid are backed by research and appear beneficial to arthritic horses,” Crandell said. Because previous research groups found that serum incubated in traditional glass blood collection tubes also had concentrated levels of IL-1Ra, one of the first goals of the study was to compare IL-1Ra levels in incubated serum to those obtained using a commercial ACS kit.
Serum was collected from five lame client-owned horses that were otherwise healthy. Lame horses were selected to represent a “real-life” situation in which a blood sample would be collected from a lame patient requiring treatment. The blood samples were pooled together from those five horses and either incubated in a standard serum tube or a commercial ACS container for 24 hours. A sample of serum was also collected and not incubated to serve as a control. “Surprisingly, the IL-1Ra levels were significantly higher in the incubated serum tube samples compared to the ACS container, but both had higher levels of IL-1Ra than unincubated serum,” explained Crandell. In this study, the IL-1Ra levels in unincubated serum, incubated serum, and ACS were 0.4, 36.9, and 12.2 ng/mL, respectively. In other studies, the IL-1Ra levels in ACS were variable, ranging from very low levels to values as high as 89.9 ng/mL. “This variability in IL-1Ra between studies and kits is notable and not completely understood. This was one of the few studies that used serum from older horses with osteoarthritis and may account for some of the variability compared to other studies,” explained Crandell. “Other factors that may affect the concentration of IL-1Ra in serum could be stress and underlying health issues. Further research is needed to gain a better understanding of how to best prepare a quality product.”
Until treatments like this have been further researched and refined, horse owners should continue to rely on other recommended therapies as well as high-quality joint supplements for minimizing the discomfort of osteoarthritis, Crandell suggested.
Increasing social interactions between stabled horses could improve trainability, performance, and welfare while decreasing aggression in public settings like shows or exhibitions. One potential way of allowing more frequent social interactions between horses is through the use of “social boxes” rather than conventional single-horse stalls.
Social boxes not only allow visual and olfactory contact but also tactile contact between horses. A group of veterinarians at the Swiss National Stud Farm recently used social boxes to determine if physical and social interactions between horses would decrease when these same horses were driven as pairs.* The social boxes used in that study had vertical metal bars spaced so that horses are able to pass their head, neck, and legs into the adjacent box.
“The researchers theorized that increasing social interactions in the stalls would decrease distracting interactions during training, and overall performance would improve,” explained Kathleen Crandell, Ph.D., a nutritionist for Kentucky Equine Research. Ten stallions used for driving were housed in individual box stalls for four weeks before being moved to social boxes. During the study, the stallions were driven for four consecutive days before, during, and after being housed in social boxes. The behavior of the stallions was then observed, noting whether each stallion aimed his head at the other horse during hitching, standing, or in movement, and whether the horses made other tactile contact.
This study found that horses performed more “social interactions” during the driving test before being housed in the social box. Those interactions decreased over the first few days of the study. The researchers suggested that increased social contact during stabling may have decreased unwanted social interactions during training and performance.
In addition to minimizing the much-needed and normal species-specific interactions and behaviors, such as mutual grooming, single-stable housing may also be detrimental to horses by:
- Contributing to the development of stereotypical behaviors or aggression towards humans;
- Decreasing locomotor activity, potentially leading to unsoundness; and
- Developing stress-induced disorders such as gastric ulcers and hindgut acidosis.
“Management-related stress can also negatively affect the intestinal microbiome and cause a leaky gut,” said Crandell.
Leaky gut syndrome is a condition in which the tight junctions between individual cells lining the walls of the gastrointestinal tract break down. The resultant leaks between the cells allow bacteria and small food particles to pass directly into the horse’s bloodstream. “Leaky gut results in low-grade systemic inflammation that often manifests as anxious behaviors, irritability, and discomfort. Therefore, protecting the health of the hindgut during stressful situations may help prevent leaky gut syndrome,” said Crandell.
She added, “EquiShure helps stabilize the pH of the hindgut, improving the environment for beneficial bacteria and making the gastrointestinal tract less hospitable for pathogenic bacteria that deteriorate and attack the tight junctions.”
The Bird Enjoyment & Advantage Koalition (BEAK), a concentrated effort to grow responsible bird ownership and educate the public on the joys and benefits of having a bird, announces the 4th Annual National Pet Bird Day, which will take place Saturday, September 17, 2022. Pet bird owners are encouraged to share stories, photos and videos of their birds using the hashtag #NationalPetBirdDay, while others can learn more about the wonderful ways in which pet birds enrich our lives.
“Birds are amazing companion animals and are actually very connected to their owners,” said Brent Weinmann, BEAK chairman. “National Pet Bird Day serves as a day to celebrate all the benefits that pet birds bring to our lives, educate on responsible bird ownership and encourage others to consider adding a feathered family member to their flock.”
What is it exactly that bird owners love most about their beloved companions? According to the American Pet Products Association, bird owners say the top benefits are that birds are fun to watch/have in the household, they provide love, companionship, company, and affection, and even relieve stress. In addition, studies show birds can also increase social interaction, which is crucial for mental health and wellbeing, and pets can be instrumental in teaching children empathy and responsibility. Currently, Millennials represent the largest demographic of bird owners, with 45 percent of bird owners belonging to the Millennial generation.
For those interested in adding a bird to their home, BEAK offers an interactive quiz at www.myrightbird.com where a series of questions help match users with the types of birds that may be right for their lifestyle. Quiz questions range from time and financial commitments, living arrangements, and noise tolerance, to birds’ level of affection and expected lifespan – all of which are key factors for potential bird owners to consider.
“We understand that birds, like any pet, can be a big commitment, and through our resources like the quiz, bird locator, species information and avian vet locator, we hope to provide new bird owners the information they need to enjoy the happiness and beauty they bring to a home,” said BEAK president, Dean Reyes.
Follow @MyRightBird on Facebook and Instagram leading up to National Pet Bird Day for video contests, giveaways, photo contests and more! To learn more about National Pet Bird Day, visit www.nationalpetbirdday.com for a downloadable toolkit and other ways to participate.
Authorities in the Canadian capital came to the rescue of a skunk spotted wandering in traffic with a peanut butter jar stuck over its head.
Ottawa Bylaw and Regulatory Services, the municipal government branch responsible for enforcing local bylaws including animal control services, said in a Twitter thread that an officer spotted the skunk wandering in a road with its head stuck in a jar.
The tweet said the officer "was able to carefully remove the container -- without getting sprayed."
The post said the skunk "ran away safely without issue."
(I wonder now without his peanut butter will the skunk ever find his jelly jam ?)
Greg Graziani, wildlife director of Florida Gator Gardens in Venus, Florida, was "seriously injured during a routine interaction with our large alligators", said the facility in a Facebook post. Graziani, a former law enforcement officer, told CNN the bite happened during a routine training session. Graziani was using his hand under the alligator's jaw to give it a command when a leaf from the surrounding foliage came loose, coming between him and the alligator. "Lack of visibility was the problem," he said. This triggered the alligator to lunge forward. Once his hand was in the gator's mouth, the reptile's instinct was to pull back. There was "no malice," Graziani said.
Luckily, the alligator responded to his command to back off and released his hand, according to Graziani. "Had this been a totally wild alligator with no training, it would've been a lot worse," he said. At first, doctors hoped they could save Graziani's left arm. The arm was partially amputated and then reattached by surgeons, said Florida Gator Gardens.
But ultimately the damage was too severe: The bite left Graziani's hand connected by just a tendon and some muscle. Graziani underwent a below-the-elbow amputation which preserved half of his forearm, according to the facility. His nerves were rerouted in a way to hopefully bypass the phantom pain amputees sometimes experience and also offer the possibility of prosthetics in the future, they said.
Graziani has faced the possibility of limb loss in the past. During a 2013 incident, his arm was seriously injured when he became entangled in the rope attached to an alligator and the animal rolled, bringing him with it. But he "only came back more determined to share his passion for reptiles with the world," said Florida Gator Gardens.
Graziani told CNN he is excited to continue working with alligators, although he acknowledged he'll have to adjust to the limitations of working one-handed. He is driven by a passion to educate the public about the species -- as well as the inexplicable magic of working with an intelligent apex predator. "They don't have vengeance, they work on instinct," he said. He emphasized the importance of educating the public "that living with these guys is definitely something that can be done safely."
"I was floored the first time I saw someone give a command to an alligator that followed it," he said. "The six alligators in that exhibit all know their names individually."
His team plans to conduct an exhaustive review of their protocols to prevent any further incidents and ensure staff safety, Graziani said. "This was an occupational hazard, not a public safety issue," he added. The zoo likewise highlighted the importance of safety when working with alligators. "Every time we work with any of our animals, we never fail to acknowledge the gravity of the situation," they wrote. "We are working with an animal where collaboration and training between species is something that is taught, and it usually goes against quite a few natural instincts." "As far as the alligator involved, he was uninjured and will continue to stay here with us as a valued member of the zoo."
Florida Gator Gardens offers tours in which visitors can get up-close and personal with reptiles, swimming with alligators and holding massive pythons. It is home to rare albino and black alligators, as well as seven large bull alligators taken in as rescues after being trapped as "nuisance alligators" by Florida officials, according to its event page.
Captain, a golden retriever puppy, has been seen by millions of people on TikTok.
That's because Captain, now almost 13 weeks old, first met his new owner Carly Hudson at the Melbourne, Australia, airport as he was brought out in a crate to her after the flight.
Hudson told Fox News Digital that the puppy took a solo flight from Brisbane to Melbourne to reach his new owner — and the moment was clearly overwhelming to both of them.
Hudson posted a TikTok of the pair's initial encounter as Captain was let out of his carrier at the airport.
In the video, as soon as she opens the crate and lifts him out, Captain — tail wagging wildly — is seen giving his new mom lots of hugs and kisses.
The video caption reads: "The day Captain flew interstate to complete [our] family."
The TikTok has gone viral with over 2.2 million views and 372,000 likes so far.
Hudson runs a TikTok account that is now dedicated to Captain called "carlyandcaptain," which shows the pup as he grows up.
From the social media page, it looks as if Captain totally enjoys his toys, baths and sticking his head out the car window during drives.
One commenter wrote to the pup's new mom and dad, "He is gorgeous. Congratulations on becoming pawrents."
In addition to making great pets, golden retrievers make top-notch therapy dogs, according to the AKC.
They appear to have the characteristics of empathy and unconditional love, which Captain seems to have in spades for his owner.
In terms of popularity, golden retrievers have been on the top 10 list of most popular dog breeds in the U.S. for decades.
Most male golden retrievers weigh between 65 to 75 pounds, while females are smaller at 55 to 65 pounds.
The average life expectancy of a golden retriever is between 10 and 12 years.
Goldens are known to be affectionate with their families, plus good with children and with other dogs.
A California man has been arrested for leaving a puppy for dead earlier this month – reportedly violating his misdemeanor probation, authorities say.
The Vallejo man – whose identity has not been revealed – allegedly abandoned the French Bulldog puppy in a gas station dumpster on August 18.
A customer reportedly found the dog wrapped in a plastic grocery bag while throwing their own trash out.
After ripping the bag open and finding the dog, the customer notified a nearby attendant, who alerted authorities.
A Solano County sheriff's officer found the young French Bulldog unresponsive but he was still alive.
"The officer checked for signs of life and was able to determine the puppy was alive, but barely," Solano Sheriff’s Animal Control Services wrote on Facebook.
Authorities transported the puppy to a veterinarian, who was able to stabilize the dog's condition. The pup – while not fully healed yet — is being cared for by the county's animal control division.
The suspect who abandoned the animal has been charged with felony animal cruelty.
Officials say the suspect admitted to throwing the pup in the dumpster because he believed it was dying.
In addition to felony animal abuse, the suspect has been charged with willfully abandoning an animal and violating his misdemeanor probation.
Authorities have not revealed his previous violation, but the suspect has been booked into a Solano County jail.
Felony animal abuse in California holds a penalty up of to 3 years in jail and a possible $20,000 fine.
The owner of a dog rescue group in Atlanta, Georgia was arrested after police found dozens of animals livening in deplorable conditions.
Authorities said more than 200 dogs were found at the property of Dog Rock Rescue. Wendy Brewer, the owner, was charged with two counts of felony aggravated animal cruelty and two misdemeanor charges of animal cruelty and abandonment.
The Heard County Sheriff's Office raided the animal shelter after reports of poor conditions and abuse. Officers described dead dogs, dogs experiencing malnutrition and dehydration, and diseased dogs living in horrendous conditions.
"While we were out there, they observed what they said was a vulture that swooped down and grabbed hold of a puppy and tried to take off with it" Heard County Sheriff's Lt. Dan Boswell said. "So the animal control officer and code enforcement intervened to protect the animal. While they were out there they saw some conditions that were unfavorable for some animals."
Investigators said they also found a fire pit, where deputies said they found 20 canine skulls with evidence of bullet wounds.
"Some of the skulls had holes in them commensurate to a possible .22 (caliber)," Boswell said.
FOX 5 learned from neighbors that the shelter had been bad for a long time. They complained about the smell, barking, and flocks of vultures circling the property regularly. Wendy Brewer was charged with two counts of felony aggravated animal cruelty and two misdemeanor charges of animal cruelty and abandonment.
Dogs Rock Rescue was licensed and its Facebook page is filled with dogs finding forever homes. The rescue frequently held pet adoptions at a PetSmart however, deputies said after an adoption event last weekend, they found the animals still in the rescue’s van parked on the property.
"Obviously, some animals will have to be euthanized. But the vast majority of them are viable, and we are looking for places for them to go," Lt. Boswell said.
There has not been an announcement on when the dogs will be available for adoption or fostering.
Law enforcement in West Virginia's capital have released the name of a man who was fatally shot by officers last weekend after he killed a police dog, identifying him as a man facing an active felony warrant.
Samuel Paul Ranson, 50, was shot by police after officers responded to a call at a home in Charleston around 11:10 p.m. Saturday, Charleston police said.
When officers arrived, Ranson fled from the home and headed toward the wood line, Police Chief James "Tyke" Hunt said at a news briefing. As officers pursued him, Ranson took out a gun and shot and killed the police dog. Officers returned fire, according to Hunt.
Authorities said Ranson was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Hunt told reporters that Ranson was facing an active felony warrant on malicious wounding charges and should not have had a firearm. He said Ranson shot the police dog when he was within "arms reach" of two police officers.
"When all of this went down, and a gunshot goes off, it’s hard to tell where or who that round was intended for," he said.
Hunt said the police dog named Axel was one of six canines working with the police station. The dog was born in the Czech Republic and was brought to the department in early 2021 from a kennel in North Carolina, Hunt added.
"It is a tragic, very tragic event because we have two losses of life," he said. "I never want to see any loss of life in the city of Charleston. Even for the family members of the offender, you know that’s still someone’s son, brother, grandchild. But for us, your police department, we lost an officer."
Global icon Dolly Parton has announced the launch of Doggy Parton, a line of dog apparel, accessories, toys and more in partnership with SportPet Designs, that will feature a little “Dolly” inspiration that is sure to get tails waggin’. Doggy Parton is quite literally a “pet” project that is very near and dear to Dolly’s heart with part of the proceeds going to Willa B. Farms — a rescue that provides a loving home to displaced animals of all kinds. For more information on Willa B. Farms or to donate please visit here.
“’Puppy Love” was my very first record and six decades later, my love for pets is stronger than ever. This inspired me to start my own line of Doggy Parton apparel, accessories, toys and more with a little ‘Dolly’ flair,” says Parton. “Part of the proceeds will support Willa B Farms, a rescue where animals in need find never-ending love. Don’t we all need that?’”
Doggy Parton Product Line Includes:
- Red Gingham Overalls Dress
- Red Gingham Western Collared Shirt
- Dolly & The Mighty Fine Band Shirt
- In a World Full of Jolenes Be A Dolly Shirt
- All Star Show Vintage Style Shirt
- Collared Blue Jean Denim Jacket
- Cowgirl Collared Dress
- Printed Denim & Gingham Bandana
- Sparkling Beaded Butterfly Necklace
- Pink Cowgirl Hat with Tiara
- Blonde Bombshell Wig
- Country Sweetheart Costume Set
- Gingham Western Print Two-piece Collar and Leash Set
- Pretty Little Lady Pink Sequined Two-piece Collar and Leash Set
- Gingham Print Body Harness
- Rhinestone Spoiled Pink Body Harness
- Fabulous High Heel Plush Dog Squeaky Toy
- Backwoods Barbie Throwback LP Record Plush Crinkle Dog Toy
- I Beg Your Parton Red Coffee Mug Plush Dog Squeaky Toy
- Dolly’s Heritage Acoustic Guitar Plush Dog Squeaky Toy
- Microphone Plush Dog Squeaky Toy with Rope
- Pink Winking Butterfly Plush Crinkle Dog Toy
- Rainbow Fringe Plush Crinkle Dog Toy
A helicopter herds thousands of impalas into an enclosure. A crane hoists sedated upside-down elephants into trailers. Hordes of rangers drive other animals into metal cages and a convoy of trucks starts a journey of about 700 kilometers (435 miles) to take the animals to their new home.
Zimbabwe has begun moving more than 2,500 wild animals from a southern reserve to one in the country’s north to rescue them from drought, as the ravages of climate change replace poaching as the biggest threat to wildlife.
About 400 elephants, 2,000 impalas, 70 giraffes, 50 buffaloes, 50 wildebeest, 50 zebras, 50 elands, 10 lions and a pack of 10 wild dogs are among the animals being moved from Zimbabwe’s Save Valley Conservancy to three conservancies in the north — Sapi, Matusadonha and Chizarira — in one of southern Africa’s biggest live animal capture and translocation exercises. “Project Rewild Zambezi,” as the operation is called, is moving the animals to an area in the Zambezi River valley to rebuild the wildlife populations there.
It's the first time in 60 years that Zimbabwe has embarked on such a mass internal movement of wildlife. Between 1958 and 1964, when the country was white-minority-ruled Rhodesia, more than 5,000 animals were moved in what was called “Operation Noah.” That operation rescued wildlife from the rising water caused by the construction of a massive hydro-electric dam on the Zambezi River that created one of the world’s largest man-made lakes, Lake Kariba.
This time it's the lack of water that has made it necessary to move wildlife as their habitat has become parched by prolonged drought, said Tinashe Farawo, spokesman for the Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority.
“We are doing this to relieve pressure. For years we have fought poaching and just as we are winning that war, climate change has emerged as the biggest threat to our wildlife,” Farawo told The Associated Press.
“Many of our parks are becoming overpopulated and there is little water or food. The animals end up destroying their own habitat, they become a danger unto themselves and they encroach neighboring human settlements for food resulting in incessant conflict,” he said.
One option would be culling to reduce the numbers of wildlife, but conservation groups protest that such killings are cruel. Zimbabwe last did culling in 1987, said Farawo.
The effects of climate change on wildlife is not isolated to Zimbabwe. Across Africa, national parks that are home to myriad wildlife species such as lions, elephants and buffaloes are increasingly threatened by below-average rainfall and new infrastructure projects. Authorities and experts say drought has seriously threatened species like rhinos, giraffes and antelope as it reduces the amount of food available.