Animal Activist

This page will be updated regularly, so please scroll down for the latest additions

I’ve been an animal lover all of my life (after overcoming being terrorized by a large dog thumbnail_Koko1when I was four,) and became an animal rights advocate after seeing “Born Free,” one of my favourite films, and the reason that I attended a talk given by the film’s stars, Virginia McKenna and her husband, Bill Travers, founders of the Born Free Foundation.

Over the years, I gave talks to schools and organizations, introducing the BFF’s outstanding role in exposing the cruelty long-hidden by zoos and circuses, and with my husband, Arthur, investigated zoos and circuses with the goal of forcing them to make changes to how the animals in their care were treated.

Recently, you may have heard that a lowland gorilla named Koko died at age 46.  Famous for having “learned” over 2000 words in English using a form of sign language, Koko and her keeper “conversed” on a daily basis.  Born in the San Francisco zoo, Koko made headlines when she adopted a kitten as a pet.

I, along with other activists, are strongly opposed to the claims of those who use captive animals to “prove” their intelligence by a one-way traffic of the animal being trained to respond to the English language and the keeper learning nothing of the animal’s own.

To this day, after years of researchers using captive animals to investigate their thumbnail_Koko2copyconnection to humans, there isn’t a single instance of the roles being reversed and the humans learning the animal’s language.  From dolphins and whales to elephants and birds, humans have trained them to respond to their commands but remain ignorant of the creatures’ own languages.

Clearly, the time has come for a new way of thinking about the animals we share our planet with as well as paying equal respect for their rights.

I’d appreciate hearing what you think about this or any other matter affecting the well-being of  animals, domestic or in the wild.

“The Doctor Will See You Now, said the Nurse to the Goose.”

No, this isn’t from “Alice in Wonderland,” but a new and growing trend of medical students working side by side with veterinarians to treat animals.
The programme is a joint effort of the Harvard Medical School and Boston’s Franklin Park zoo, intended to reinforce the fact that animals and humans share more than the same environment.  While many of the students grew up with pets, none of their medical school training Incorporated the physical similarities and differences all animals have in common with humans, and how recent research has proved there is so much more to learn from animals that is just now beginning to benefit human health.
Each student spends a month at the zoo under the supervision of a vet. Student surveys show that the programme has been an enormous success, with the doctors-to-be coming away with questions they had never anticipated about the intersection of humans and their animal counterparts.
As the news of the collaboration between vets and med students spreads internationally, one immediate benefit is evident, that animals are on their way to being thought of and treated with a new respect for being just that — animals.
For all you pet owners, you might think of having a conversation about this trail-blazing programme with your vet on the next visit, with and eye toward expanding its reach.   From little acorns…………
I’d love to hear your comments about this and all other animal matters.

Britain has banned third-party sales of puppies and kittens to protect the animals from exploitation.
The government says the new law will help crack down on “puppy farms” and make it harder for unscrupulous dealers who have little regard for animal welfare.
Animal Welfare Minister David Rutley said the ban “is part of our commitment to make sure the nation’s much-loved pets get the right start in life.”
The decision follows a public consultation that found overwhelming support for banning third-party sales.
Under the new measure, people wishing to adopt a puppy or kitten would have to deal directly with a breeder or a re-homing center, rather than pet shops or other commercial dealers.
Animal welfare groups praised the government measure as an important step forward. Marc Abraham, a veterinarian who appears on television and is the founder of Pup Aid, called it “a real victory for grassroots campaigners as well as the U.K.’s dogs and cats.”
He said the law would make breeders more accountable and make it more difficult to sell illegally smuggled puppies and kittens.
The change was also endorsed by one of Britain’s best-known animal shelters, the Battersea Cat and Dogs Home.
Email your comments to:  





latest news blue 3d realistic paper speech bubble


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s