Recent Victories for Animals

Animals Used in Laboratory Experiments

  • Dole Food Company, the world’s largest fruit and vegetable producer stopped funding animal tests.
  • The Taiwan Food and Drug Administration stopped requiring animal tests, including drowning and electroshocking mice and rats, for companies making anti-fatigue health claims about their food products
  • Secret deodorant banned tests on animals and now sports PETA’s cruelty-free logo.
  • Pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline banned near-drowning tests on mice and rats.
  • Funding from the PETA International Science Consortium Ltd. helped create a human cell-based three-dimensional lung model that has the potential to prevent tens of thousands of animals from undergoing inhalation toxicity tests.
  • The Hass Avocado Board will no longer support, fund, or conduct experiemnts on animals.

PETA’s Bunny Free app makes it easy to shop for curelty-free cosmetics and personal-car and household products.

Aniimals Used for Food:

  • Violations of the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act were exposed at dozens of U.S. slaughterhouses, and in Massachusetts, a slaughterhouse was closed for three months.
  • Panera Bread and Pret A Manger nixed their vegan milk surcharge.
  • Target, Costco, Wegmans, and other retailers stopped selling Thai coconut products that rely on forced labor by monkeys who are chained and abusively trained.
  • Boiler Brewing Company, Frye Brewing Company, and Mr. Kicco Coffee & Wine stopped selling kopi luwak, which is coffee made from beans excreted by captive Asian palm civets.

Each vegan saves nearly 200 animals a year just by not eating them.

Animals Used in the Fashion Industry

  • PVH Corp., the parent company of Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, and others, as well as luxury brands Karl Lagerfeld and Alexander Birman stopped using exotic-animal skins.
  • Columbia, Lands’ End, Valentino, UNIQLO, Victoria’s Secret, Ann Taylor, Loft, Lane Bryant, and other clothing companies banned alpaca fleece, which is violently shorn off the bodies of restrained, terrified alpacas.
  • Nordstrom banned fur and exotic skins at its stores and online.
  • Fashion brands Alice + Olivia and Monique Lhuillier and Canadian department store chain Winners all banned fur.
  • French retailer American Vintage banned the use of angora in its collections.
  • L’Oreal Group, the largest cosmetics and beauty company in the world, banned the use of all animal hair in its brushes.

The fashion world is ditching animal skins in favor of fresh alternatives like vegan leather made out of cork, mushrooms, pineapple leaves, and other animal-friendly materials.

Animals Used in the Entertainment Industry

  • ExxonMobil cut ties with the cruel, deadly Iditarod dog-sled race.
  • The first-ever federal legislation mandating medication oversight in horse racing became law, all because of PETA’s undercover investigation into trainer Steve Asmussen in 2014.
  • Tiger King’s “Doc” Antel was indicted on charges of wildlife trafficking and cruelty to animals, and fugitive roadside zoo owner Tim Stark was arrested.
  • New South Wales, Australia, banned the breeding and importation of captive dolphins, which means that no new dolphinariums will be allowed to open in the state.

Frustrated orcas at SeaWorld parks suffer from painful dental trauma caused by gnawing on concrete and metal surfaces in their small tanks.

Victories for Pets

  • It is now illegal in Virginia to leave dogs chained outside in extreme heat or freezing cold.
  • CVS, Albertsons, and AutoZone announced that they will start warning shoppers of the dangers of leaving dogs in hot cars.
  • During a 12-month period, PETA’s mobile clinics sterlized 13,774 dogs and cats, and their Emergency Response Team responded to 13,764 calls and emails from caring people across the U.S.

On a mild 70-degree day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to 99 degrees in 20 minutes.

Happy Friday ~ Meet Yolanda From Save the Chimps

Yolanda (3)
My name is Yolanda, and I am one of the elderly residents. I was born in Africa in the late 1960s. In the early days of primate research, it was common practice to capture young chimpanzees from the wild for use in laboratories. Because a chimpanzee mother wouldn’t willingly give up her baby, force would have to be used against my mother and other members of the group. I arrived at Holloman Air Force Base in May 1975 with two other chimpanzees and six months later I was put into a series of research projects. During my decades of being used in medical research and as a breeder, I gave birth to six babies, all taken from me for laboratory use.

In 2002, I was among the 266 chimpanzees rescued by Save the Chimps. At Save the Chimps, my friends Olida, Lisa, and I became members of Rufus’ family and migrated to Florida together in June 2006. Our tight-knit family loves to raise a ruckus and chase each other around the island. Even though I’m elderly, I often jump right in with Lisa at my side for backup. These harmless scuffles settle quickly and are followed by grooming sessions where we reinforce friendships and smooth over any hard feelings.

I have heavy eyelids and high-set ears. These adorable features I’m told resemble the beloved science fiction character Yoda. I also have a distinct voice that can be heard over anyone else when I’m expressing a strongly felt opinion. I am incredibly fond of veggies, especially celery and I love resting in hammocks. Retirement to the sanctuary has also provided me with a lush, green island in the beautiful Florida sunshine where I can spend my days in comfort.

Meet Tigers Herman and Falcor ~ Sharing PAWS Newsletter

Rescue. Advocacy. Sanctuary. For Life.
Since 1984
September 2022 | Newsletter
Introducing Tigers Herman and Falcor!
This may be the first time we’re introducing you to our “new” tigers, Herman and Falcor, but in fact these special tigers have been in our care since May 2021. Why the long wait? Herman and Falcor, both born in 2012, were part of a major government action against the owners of a private zoo in Oklahoma, Jeff and Lauren Lowe (featured in the Netflix series “Tiger King”). The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) were involved in the action, and eventually 68 big cats were seized from the facility due to alleged violations of the federal Endangered Species Act and the Animal Welfare Act. At the time the DOJ filed its complaint against the Lowes, the agency stated that the couple had failed to provide “basic veterinary care, appropriate food, and safe living conditions for the animals.” The Lowes have since been permanently banned from exhibiting wild animals. PAWS was among a number of Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS) accredited sanctuaries that took in the big cats. Now that legalities have been settled, we are pleased to tell you about Herman and Falcor.

Herman (pictured above/left) is considered to be a quiet, shy tiger. He saves his outgoing moments – rolling in the grass or lying upside down – for times when he thinks no one is looking. Herman loves to eat, and he prefers being bathed with a hose to lounging in his pool. This mellow tiger will emit friendly “chuffs” and rub up against his fence whenever caregivers are present. (Chuffs are a sociable vocalization that tigers use with each other or familiar people. They sound like breathy snorts.)
Herman enjoys the peaceful environment at ARK 2000, where he can truly relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature all around him. He particularly likes the scent of sage, which caregivers sprinkle throughout his habitat.

Falcor (pictured above/right) is more outgoing and interested in everything going on around him. He can be found with his nose right up to the fence when caregivers are working nearby. He gets along well with other tigers housed in the habitats near him, but he is usually more interested in what the caregivers are doing and will chuff as they approach his enclosure. Falcor’s wild side comes out when he’s eating, so caregivers give him his space at that time. Naps are definitely a favorite pastime. When he was recently given some soft, fragrant branches from a redwood tree, Falcor joyfully rolled around on them, chewed them, and eventually tore them into bits, enjoying every minute. As a white tiger, Falcor is the result of inbreeding to produce his coat coloring. A double recessive gene carried by a small percentage of tigers causes partial loss of pigmentation, resulting in white fur. Both parents must carry this uncommon gene, so inbreeding (pairing tigers who are closely related genetically) is used to create the novel color. Unfortunately, inbreeding can result in a variety of health issues for these tigers.
White tigers do not have any conservation value, although exhibitors will try to convince people otherwise as a way to appear credible. This only hinders the true conservation efforts that are needed to protect the fewer than 5,000 tigers remaining in the wild. White tigers are mostly seen in exploitive settings such as circuses, roadside zoos, and magic shows.
We are honored to welcome Herman and Falcor to the PAWS family and provide them with the care and respect they deserve. Thanks to Bobbi Brink of Lions, Tigers and Bears for transporting them to their forever home at PAWS. 

Honoring Boy and All Those Chimpanzees Like Him Who Had to Endure Medical Research ~ Save the Chimps

At an estimated age of 53, like so many chimps rescued from medical research, Boy has somewhat of a mysterious past. The location of his birth and his parents are unknown, but it is possible that he was born in Africa. He spent some years at a research facility in Texas, and in 1982, he was sent to a now-defunct laboratory in New York State called LEMSIP, the Laboratory for Experimental Medicine and Surgery in Primates. There he spent most of his life alone in a 5’ x 5’ x 7’ cage and was used in at least one biomedical research study. When LEMSIP closed in the 1990s, dozens of LEMSIP chimps, including Boy, were sent to the Coulston Foundation, a laboratory in Alamogordo, NM. It appears that he was used as a breeder there and fathered at least two children.

In 2002, he was among 266 chimpanzees rescued by Save the Chimps. He was found living alone in Building 300, dubbed “The Dungeon” due to its dark and miserable conditions. He showed signs of depression, often lying on his perch, and showing little interest in his surroundings. This came as no surprise, as his records indicate he had spent the bulk of his life alone, anesthetized at least 175 times over 20 years, and endured nearly 20 liver biopsies. The staff of Save the Chimps quickly removed him from isolation and introduced him to other chimps. He perked up immediately, becoming much more active and energetic, delighting in the company of his new chimpanzee friends.

He prefers the company of ladies over that of the males of the group. In January of 2010, his new chimp family took the journey of a lifetime to their new island home in Florida. While some of his family members were nervous on the journey, he laid on his back with his feet in the air, sensing that whatever was happening was well worth the effort. When they arrived in Florida, they learned they had a large island to explore. Boy loves relaxing in the sun and enjoys picking the cattails along the waterway to eat. His favorite activity is grooming, as long as he can find someone to sit still long enough to endure one of his marathon grooming sessions! It brings us joy to see Boy living his golden years to their fullest, on a sunny island with his family by his side. You can help support his golden years in sanctuary with a gift to our Giving Day for Apes campaign. Gifts of $500 or more will be matched, giving your gift twice the impact!

PS A great way to support our elderly residents and help us reach our goal is to create your own fundraising page! It’s easy and you can learn how with our fundraising toolkit. Your fundraiser can also help Save the Chimps win up to $2,000 from the sponsors! All fundraisers who raise more than $150 on their own fundraising page will get a free Save the Chimps tee shirt! Fundraise >>

Deja Vu

Found this old post from 2014 about my love for Great BlueHerons.


The new year is a time for reflection. After a visit to one of our favorite blogs last night, Babsje Heron, a misty-eyed me recalled my first encounter with a blue heron. It was a magical, surreal encounter because I was alone and close enough that she felt my presence, yet did not fly away. I felt like this magnificent bird and I connected, as if we were the only two beings in the world at that precise moment. I couldn’t even have imagined that anything could have such an impact on my psyche, but the feeling has lingered more than 40 years later. Memories deeply tucked away have boldly come marching into today. Now, my mind is alive with music from the same era and I’m sure this Neil Young song and other Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young tunes will fill every waking hour with their soft, nature-…

View original post 140 more words

Great Blue Heron Poem

Yesterday, a spectacular Great Blue Heron graced us with a visit, only the second one I’ve spotted on my property in 25 years. Of course, I was thrilled! She was resting on the garage, then burst into flight when she saw me, heading west towards Lake Simcoe just two minutes away from our place. She flew silently overhead, her enormous wings seemingly in slow motion. In awe of her beauty and pure elegance, I stood watching as she disappeared into the sunset. I’ve been thinking about Herons all day today and found this lovely poem that captures the magic of the Great Blue Heron.

His Silence Speaks (© 2019 Lori Colbo)

Morning is hush,

the tide is out,

a slight haze hovers over the water.

A Great Blue Heron wades

in the shallows of the bay,

strong, stoic, still.

He keeps vigil over the mountain

in the distance like a sentry on watch.

A keening gull circles scouting breakfast.

The Heron remains motionless, contemplative;

His silence speaks.

The noisy gull now understands

the morning is sacrosanct

due its honor because of its splendor.

But he is impatient and flies away.

An hour has passed,

The Heron remains in place

basking in the warmth of the sun.

His silence speaks

“O blessed morn,'”

then it is time.

He lifts off into the air,

his majestic wings

flap in slow motion.

He takes his time

for the morning is still sacred,

and he must not disturb it,

For it belongs to the Lord

whose silence speaks.

Read more about the Great Blue Heron with photos from Lori’s page at LetterPile

How Dogs Show Empathy ~ Article

Originally published at

Do dogs feel empathy for each other, or are we anthropomorphizing them?

Empathy, one of the more complex human emotions, is the ability to identify with another person, sense what they’re feeling, and respond emotionally in a similar manner. Having the ability to put yourself in another person’s shoes is what makes us truly human.

But can dogs experience empathy, too? Yes, and they show empathy through physical comfort, greeting behaviors, and distraction, in an attempt to share joy, calm stress, or ease sadness.

Do dogs have empathy?

Studies show that dogs do indeed show empathy for each other, for their people, and even for strangers. While not everyone in the scientific community agrees on the degree to which dogs have cognitive emotions like empathy, most dog owners ascribe human traits, emotions, or intentions to their dogs.

And why not? After all, we evolved together. Dogs are the oldest domesticated species, and have lived alongside humans, observing our every twitch, mood, and emotion, for thousands of years. Reading human emotions has been advantageous for their survival as a species, and elevated them to their unique status as “man’s best friend.”

Dogs also display more human behaviors than any other other animal. Because of these behaviors, it’s easy to feel like your dog is almost human. Dogs are sentient beings, and like people, dogs have a rich inner life. Dogs feel joy, optimism, anxiety, fear, excitement, sadness, and other emotions, just on a different level than most adult humans.

Scientific data suggests that human toddlers start showing empathy, in a primitive way, around the age of two. Some scientists and psychologists believe that dogs have the mental and emotional capacity of a roughly two-year-old human child.

Still others believe that dogs have the emotional capacity of an even older child. Dr. Jill Sackman, a clinician in behavioral medicine and senior medical director of BluePearl Veterinary Partners’ Michigan hospitals, emphatically states, “Dogs probably have the level of cognition of a three to five-year-old human.” Dr. Sackman and other canine behaviorists, psychologists, and veterinarians believe that dogs have more advanced emotional capacity than they’ve been given credit for in the past. And numerous studies demonstrate that dogs show true empathy, not merely emotional contagion, toward other dogs and people.

Dogs show empathy to each other

In an experiment at the University of Vienna’s Messerli Research Institute, 16 pairs of dogs were studied for their reaction to distress sounds from three different sources: dogs they lived with, unfamiliar dogs, and a computer-generated control sound with the same frequencies and timing of the distressed dog sounds.

The researchers took measurements before and after each of the three distress recordings to gauge the dog’s heart rates, salivary cortisol levels, and behavioral responses. The dogs’ housemate was brought into the room immediately after the recordings.

As you might have predicted, all the dogs reacted much more strongly to the recordings of other dogs — both their housemates and unfamiliar dogs — than the computer-generated ones. This behavior indicates that the dogs correctly interpreted and reacted to other dogs’ unhappy sounds. While listening, the dogs’ body language included stress signals like licking their lips, whining, yawning, shaking, a lowered body posture, and a tucked tail. Predictably, the dogs’ stress indicators increased when they heard the distress sounds of their housemates, especially the cortisol level.

Reviewing this study, Stanley Coren, Ph.D notes in his ​Psychology Today​ column that upon being reunited with their housemates, the dogs showed many concern-related behaviors. Their body language included tail wagging, greeting behaviors, licking their housemate’s faces, staying close to them, rubbing their body alongside them, and trying to initiate play.

It appears that in an attempt to cheer up their housemate, the dogs offered physical comfort and distractions. Dr. Coren believes that the dogs in the study showed empathy and even “sympathetic concern,” which is a step beyond emotional contagion.

How do dogs express their emotions?

As a dog owner, you’ve surely experienced empathy from your dog at some time. She seems to avoid you when you’re angry, and to offer you her canine version of comfort when you’re sad. Dogs love sharing our joy, too—just try doing a happy dance without your dog joining in. The empathy dogs show to humans is similar to their empathetic response to other dogs in distress, in that they wish to alleviate your sadness or stress and share in your joy.

One key difference is that some dogs will stare deeply into your eyes, trying to make a connection. In empathizing with other dogs, even familiar or loved ones like housemates, staring could be misinterpreted for aggression.

Other than that, dogs show their empathy similarly to humans and to fellow dogs. If you’re crying or feeling melancholy, your dog may drop his head in your lap, nuzzle you, or offer you a paw. Similar to showing empathy to other dogs, your dog may also stay close to your side , lick your hands, try to lick your face, whine, and generally empathize with your feelings.


Quote of the Day ~ Meet Mika from Save the Chimps Sanctuary

About Mika

I am a confident, friendly female in Alice’s Group. I have a good heart, and my caregivers can always count on an enthusiastic greeting and smile from me at every meal! It’s amazing that I have such a positive outlook on life, because not only was I taken from my mother Gail a mere 12 hours after birth, I was used heavily in biomedical research protocols. Between the ages of 2-8 alone, I was subjected to nearly 200 blood draws and 21 liver biopsies.

Thankfully, all of that is behind me now. My favorite things are sunglasses and enrichment that has peanut butter or jelly. I am almost always found in the company of my BFF Tash, and together we spend our days soaking up the sun or browsing for goodies on our island.


  •  Alice

Favorite Things

  •  Sunglasses
  •  Enrichment
  •  Tash


  •  Strong
  •  Sweet
  •  Caring

Visit Save the Chimps to meet more residents and learn about the how the caregivers interact with the residents.

How Good Is a Cat’s Memory ~ Article

Originally published at

Ancient Greek philosopher and scientist Aristotle suggested that “many animals have memory and are capable of instruction, but no other animal except man can recall the past at will.”

And throughout the ages, with little research that disproves this theory, the hypothesis has held: animals do not have personal awareness, thus cannot recall the past, and live only in the moment. In a nutshell, this means that after about the age of four, we have what is known as episodic memory and can time travel cognitively from the present moment, or contextualize time, traveling backward or forward at our whim, while animals cannot. Linked to personal awareness, or autonoetic consciousness, episodic memory, a phrase coined in 1972 by Dr. Endel Tulving, is what separates humans from all others in the animal kingdom.

But why, then, does your cat remember you feed her first thing every morning, give her a treat mid-morning, a belly rub after dinner, and cuddle watching TV in the evening? You know she remembers because any variation of this routine is met with her disapproval. She also has her favorite people who visit and ignores others. So clearly she remembers people and events and seems entirely aware of time. Are these just instinctual connections or do cats have memories? As a cat owner, the theory that cats live only in the moment may be challenged on a daily basis.

Is episodic memory unique to humans?

Delving deep into the psyches of our pets is a hot topic today with companion animals regarded as members of our families. It would be heartwarming to know that he is reflecting on sweet memories as he blissfully basks in a sunny window, or indeed if he has a sense of time at all. And while we’re pretty sure our cats are not planning their futures, do they even remember yesterday? Or do they operate solely according to their internal clock, or natural rhythms, as they move through different states of being?

Over the years, several prominent philosophers and psychologists have addressed the question of cognitive time travel in animals. According to Endel Tulving, a neuroscientist and psychologist whose theories have provided the foundation of the understanding of human memory — animals live in the moment. Does this mean your cat is stuck in time? Or could cats and dogs, too, have a treasure trove of memories they draw upon to supplement their instincts that are yet undiscovered?

Whether or not an animal possesses enough awareness of self and conception of time to construct an episodic memory is a widely debated issue across the board and certainly more studies on the subject will be forthcoming in the future.

Homing instinct versus memory

Linda Cole at Canidae declares, “Researchers think they understand a dog or cat’s memory, but their science isn’t exact and more studies need to be done.” Cole questions the memory theory in light of amazing stories about cats returning home after being lost for years and traveling miles to get back. She hints that memory of their owner, another pet, or a familiar place drives them onward.

Or is it a cat’s homing instinct that brings them back? Cats’ uncanny perception of direction is due to some thus far unknown sixth sense that has mystified scientists, veterinarians, and animal behaviorists for years. As early as 1922, studies have shown this remarkable homing ability of cats, and theories abound, from electromagnetic fields to olfactory clues. But until more studies lead to a definitive answer, is it possible that memory could be the impetus, or at least partly responsible for the phenomenon? After all, only two published studies— the study from 1922 and another from 1954— exist.

Semantic memory

According to Dr. Tulving, most mammals including humans and birds can build complex sets of knowledge or semantic memory, but people remember having learned it, while animals don’t. For example, from black-capped chickadees recovering their seed caches after a season to squirrels digging up their long-buried nuts, all animals have semantic memory, which is essential for their survival. Tulving believes that episodic memory evolved from semantic memory, therefore, semantic memory is a prerequisite for episodic memory. And he believes that animals have semantic memory but that they do not have episodic memory.

Spatial memory

Spatial memory is also essential for the survival of animals in the wild as it involves locating and remembering where food, water, mates, and predators are within their habitat. Your cat uses spatial memory every day to function and navigate her territory. She must find the food and water bowls, the litter box, toys, and even you when she’s seeking out some affection.

Long-term and short-term memory

Memories are created in us all by physical and mental experiences, and in addition to spatial memory, cats also have short-term memories and long-term memories, explains Dr. Brian Hare, associate professor of evolutionary anthropology at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. Powerful, impactful events, both positive and negative, will primarily influence which memories are stored long-term and these can last indefinitely. For instance, the long-term memory of a cat who may have suffered abuse by an owner in her past may be triggered when she sees a person with a similar appearance, such as a woman wearing a hat, or a tall man with a beard.

Another example of long-term memory you may have experienced with your cat is when you return from a vacation, and although less excitable than a dog, if a cat could do backflips she would. Cats form strong bonds with their people and remember them, even after many years have passed as witnessed by those who have lost cats that returned many years later.

Cats’ memory and brain function

Overall, a cat’s brain functions at the level of a two- to -three-year-old child, and is almost 200 times more retentive than a dog’s memory, says Second Opinion. To put that in perspective, a dog’s memory span is about five minutes unless a lesson or command is continually repeated and reinforced. In tests, cats’ memory span averaged about 16 hours and only when the activity involved in the test benefited them in some way.

So, bottom line, cats do have a good memory, and it may be even better than we think!

Quote of the Day

Infinite riches are all around you if you will open your mental eyes and behold the treasure house of infinity within you. There is a gold mine within you from which you can extract everything you need to live life gloriously, joyously and abundantly.” ~ Joseph Murphy D.R.S., D.D., Ph.D., LL.D., Excerpt from The POWER of Your Subconscious Mind

And I Thought I Had a Lot of Cats! Sharing My Lanai Cat Sanctuary Newsletter to Celebrate International Cat Day


Today is International Cat Day and we’re celebrating cats and all of the people who make the world a better place for them. We are only as strong as our network of helpful folks who understand that each has a role and we can all play to our strengths.

Conservation Partners: Rather than conservationists euthanizing cats caught in traps, we partner with them to help save feline lives. They bring us cats that are out in the wild, searching for food and water, and also jeopardizing native and endangered ground-nesting bird populations. We welcome these cats for the rest of their lives or until they find a furr-ever home. 

Veterinarian Partners: Currently no veterinarians live on Lanai. We partner with two of Hawaii’s leading veterinarians to fly their teams from Oahu nearly every week to provide high-quality care for our 665 Lanai Lions. The ability to provide this care is critical to a successful sanctuary. 

Volunteer Partners: Our volunteer partners visit from nearby islands and from around the world. We’re also thankful for foster families who provide temporary homes while sick or injured Lanai Lions are being rehabilitated.

Adoption Partners: Last year more than 100 cats found their furr-ever homes through adoption. Our Sanctuary continues to search for shelter partners throughout the U.S. so that cats who would be great pets can live with families of their own. 

Donors: Without our donors, we wouldn’t be able to continue our life-saving work. Friends like you are the heart of our nonprofit organization.

We live on an island with about 3,000 people, no traffic lights, and one gas station. It’s always an uphill battle to do what we do so we rely on partnerships to empower us to make a difference in the lives of animals. On this International Cat Day, let’s celebrate all the hundreds of feline lives we’ve saved on our tiny island as well as celebrate all the relationships we have made throughout the years.

About Lanai Cat Sanctuary

With 25 cats, a horse corral and a dream, Lanai Cat Sanctuary was born. When founder Kathy Carroll moved to the island of Lanai from Illinois, she was shocked to see the large homeless cat population. She vowed to stop the suffering of cats struggling to survive and rallied volunteers to help. Today on 3.5 acres, Lanai Cat Sanctuary is home to more than 600 rescue cats who now have food, medical care and love, for life.

Read more…

Anyone Up For An Ice Cream Sundae?

I love indulging in a creamy ice cream sundae occasionally, and I love putting the whole thing together. So many creative options, and this vegan ice cream sundae guide from PETA is full of great tips for the perfect sundae.

Another diet-friendly option for lovers of frozen desserts is making vegan ice cream and sorbets with the Yonanas machine. This nifty appliance turns frozen bananas and other frozen fruit into dreamy concoctions that you can get really creative with, such as adding cocoa powder, chocolate chips, cookies, muffins, additional fresh fruit, make frozen pies, and so much more. Ice cream is a rare treat for us but with this machine, we have a delicious frozen dessert, either in a bowl or in a cone, every week or so. I bought my Yonanas on Amazon.

Quote of the Day

In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.” ~ Albert Camus

Quote of the Day

“Classical Horse” by Marilyn Hageman ~ Today’s Thoreau quote is certainly a poignant one, and not to trivialize its meaning, but the above canvas hangs in my studio sitting room and I love it, but no matter how many times I look at it, I see a black horn sticking out from the side of this horse’s head when clearly it is an ear.

It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

Animals feel pain, pleasure, fear, frustration, loneliness, and motherly love. Whenever we consider doing something that would interfere with their needs, we are morally obligated to take them into account.

As a long-time member of PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, I believe the following excerpt from PETA’s website eloquently sums up the belief that “equal consideration” of animals is an integral animal right.

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. Many of us bought our beloved “pets” at pet shops and kept beautiful birds in cages. We wore wool and silk, ate McDonald’s burgers, and fished. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you may be asking the question: Why should animals have rights?

In his book Animal Liberation, Peter Singer states that the basic principle of equality does not require equal or identical treatment; it requires equal consideration. This is an important distinction when talking about animal rights. People often ask if animals should have rights, and quite simply, the answer is “Yes!” Animals surely deserve to live their lives free from suffering and exploitation. Jeremy Bentham, the founder of the reforming utilitarian school of moral philosophy, stated that when deciding on a being’s rights, “The question is not ‘Can they reason?’ nor ‘Can they talk?’ but ‘Can they suffer?’” In that passage, Bentham points to the capacity for suffering as the vital characteristic that gives a being the right to equal consideration. The capacity for suffering is not just another characteristic like the capacity for language or higher mathematics. All animals have the ability to suffer in the same way and to the same degree that humans do. They feel pain, pleasure, fear, frustration, loneliness, and motherly love. Whenever we consider doing something that would interfere with their needs, we are morally obligated to take them into account.

Supporters of animal rights believe that animals have an inherent worth—a value completely separate from their usefulness to humans. We believe that every creature with a will to live has a right to live free from pain and suffering. Animal rights is not just a philosophy—it is a social movement that challenges society’s traditional view that all nonhuman animals exist solely for human use. As PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk has said, “When it comes to pain, love, joy, loneliness, and fear, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy. Each one values his or her life and fights the knife.” 

Ways You Can Help Wildlife

Helping Wildlife Tips by PETA

Handsome Basil, raised from a wee babe and successfully rehabilitated into the wild in 2013.
  • Rinse out recyclable jars and bottles and put the lids back on them so that the containers can’t become lodged on an animal’s head. Cut apart plastic six-pack rings, including the inner diamonds.
  • Keep your trash inside tightly sealed containers.
  • Putting an inexpensive cap on your chimney will keep birds, squirrels, and others from making their nests inside, preventing horrific deaths and saving you from spending time and money having them removed.
  • Escort bugs outdoors with PETA’s Humane Bug Catcher. You can also use our Humane Smart Mousetrap to catch and relocate small animals and our Frogsaver Lily Pad to help them escape from your pool.
  • Replace some hard-to-maintain grass areas in your yard with native plants and trees to provide wild animals with food sources and habitats.
  • Keep cats indoors or on a screened porch to prevent them from killing wildlife (and to keep them safe, too).
  • Choose Earth-friendly lawn-care methods. Pesticides and herbicides made of dangerous chemicals pollute the environment and poison animals’ food sources.

Quote of the Day

We need to accept that we won’t always make the right decisions, that we’ll screw up royally sometimes—understanding that failure is not the opposite of success, it’s part of success.” ~ Arianna Huffington ~ Greek-American author, syndicated columnist and businesswoman. She is a co-founder of The Huffington Post, the founder and CEO of Thrive Global, and the author of fifteen books.

Elephants and Their Magnificent Trunks ~ A Message from PAWS, Performing Animal Welfare Society

PERFORMING ANIMAL WELFARE SOCIETYRescue. Advocacy. Sanctuary. For Life.Since 1984July 2022 | Newsletter

African elephants Mara and ThikaSecrets of the Elephant Trunk by Catherine Doyle, M.S.
As Director of Science, Research and Advocacy for PAWS, I have been conducting ongoing behavioral observations of the African elephants at our ARK 2000 sanctuary. During a recent round of observations, I took extra notice of the ways the elephants use their trunks, those amazing appendages that serve a multitude of functions.The elephant’s trunk is used to breathe, suck up water and transfer it to the mouth to drink, bathe, smell, toss dust or mud onto themselves, socialize, call, explore, and rub their eyes and scratch their heads. Just like people are left or right handed, elephants may have a preference for the way they rotate the trunk to gather or grab vegetation and the side of the mouth where they place their food. The Elephant Ethogram, a library of the behavior and communication of African elephants created by our friends at ElephantVoices, documents at least 250 separate trunk-related
An elephant’s trunk is boneless, with an array of 40,000 muscles (humans have about 650 muscles in their entire body). It weighs about 200 pounds and is capable of lifting more than 700 pounds. African elephants have two opposable “fingers” at the end of the trunk that are so dextrous they can pick a single blade of grass (Asian elephants have one “finger”). At the same time, the trunk is so powerful it can tear down a huge tree limb (as I once watched our elephant Mara do). Scientists have found that the trunk can suck up three liters (0.8 gallons) of water in a second. To move water this quickly requires inhaling at 330 miles per hour!
According to a new study from the Georgia Institute of Technology, muscles are not the only factor in how an elephant stretches the trunk – its folded skin plays an important role. When reaching out, an elephant telescopically stretches the trunk, first extending the section that includes the tip, then moving up to the next section as stretching increases, gradually working back toward the mouth. Researchers found that the elephant’s skin does not stretch uniformly; the top side of the trunk, which has skin folds, is more flexible than the bottom side that has wrinkles. This makes it easier to reach downward – which elephants do when foraging for food and picking up items. This combination of muscle and skin provides the trunk’s strength and versatility.It’s always fascinating to watch the elephants at PAWS and the incredible ways they use their trunks, whether it’s picking up a single acorn, breaking apart tree limbs, or enjoying a good mud bath. The spacious, natural habitats at the ARK 2000 sanctuary offer the opportunity for elephants to engage in these natural behaviors and many more.Click on the arrow ave to watch a super close-up video of African elephant Toka using her trunk to forage for fresh vegetation in her habitat at PAWS’ ARK 2000 sanctuary. Do you think she’s left or right “trunk-handed”?Register Now!PAWS 2022 InternationalCaptive Wildlife onference

The PAWS International Captive Wildlife Conference is back! It’s been four years since our last conference and a lot has happened during that time on important animal issues. In keeping with our theme of “Back Together in the Fight for Captive Wildlife”, this will be an in-person conference. The conference will take place November 11-12 in Sacramento, Calif. There is an optional visit to PAWS’ 2,300-acre ARK 2000 sanctuary – home to elephants, tigers and bears – on November 13. More than 30 speakers from around the world will bring you up to speed on issues and actions concerning captive wild animals, including elephants, big cats, cetaceans, and nonhuman primates. Topics include animals in entertainment, zoos and tourism, and updates on the latest in legislation, law and science. Conference space is very limited, so be sure to register today! Here are just a few of our conference speakers:Scott Blais, Co-founder and CEO, Global Sanctuary for Elephants (Brazil)Nikita Dhawan, Founder, Youth for Animals (India)Erika Fleury, Program Director, North American Primate Sanctuary AllianceLori Marino, President and Founder, Whale Sanctuary ProjectAllison Skidmore, Wildlife criminologist and National Geographic ExplorerMichael Webber, Director of “The Conservation Game” (watch the official movie trailer here)Steven M. Wise, Founder and President, Nonhuman Rights ProjectView more conference speakers hereNew to the conference: The “super panel” where experts tackle tough questions involving captive wild animals and how to bring about change.Special event: Photographer Colleen Plumb book signing, “Thirty Times a Minute.” (Available for purchase at conference.) Registration is open now. Click on the “Register Now” button for more information and to register. The health and safety of conference participants is a top priority. Please read PAWS’ COVID Health and Safety Protocols before you register. Link available on registration page. See you in November!Register Now!Thank you to our Main Conference Sponsor David Reuben and his steadfast support for all animals!International Tiger Day is July 29Friday, July 29, is International Tiger Day – a time to honor and take action to support these highly endangered animals who are so very close to our hearts, especially here at PAWS. We are privileged to care for nine rescued tigers at the ARK 2000 sanctuary, and thanks to people like you they roam spacious natural habitats, stretch and scratch on sturdy oak trees, and play in their own pools.Rosemary and Morris (above) are among eight tigers PAWS rescued from a defunct roadside zoo that sold photo opportunities with helpless cubs to the public. These places constantly breed tigers, rip the cubs from their mothers shortly after birth, and exploit them for as long as they can. Once the cubs get too big, they are sold off, kept for breeding, or simply “disappear.”Claire (pictured) was bred to be sold like unfeeling merchandise. She was fated to become someone’s exotic “pet” or displayed in a dismal roadside zoo. It would have meant a lifetime of depressing confinement in a small space, with poor nutrition and lack of proper veterinary care. Our tigers are a daily reminder that big cats simply do not belong in captivity, where their complex needs can never be fully met, and that we must strive to protect those tigers remaining in the wild – which is the only place they belong. You can help wild tigers Learn more about these endangered big cats – the largest cat species in the world. Tigers are threatened by habitat fragmentation and loss, lack of prey, poaching, and human-wildlife conflict. Share what you’ve learned with others.Don’t be fooled by fake “conservation” claims. No tigers born in captivity will ever be introduced to the wild. White tigers, which have absolutely no conservation value, are highly inbred and often unhealthy. Support conservation work by legitimate organizations working in Asia to save tigers.Reduce your environmental footprint. Wild tigers are being affected by climate change, such as in the Sundarbans in India where they are losing mangrove forest habitat due to rising waters. Learn how you can reduce your carbon emissions using the EPA’s Household Carbon Footprint Calculator. Drive less by carpooling, using mass transit, and combining errand trips whenever you can. Think green!Take action for captive tigers Never patronize a place that offers up-close “encounters” with tigers or other wild animals, including cub petting, photos, or other interactions.Do not “like” social media posts showing people holding or posing with tiger cubs. Reach out and educate the person about why tiger exploitation is inhumane.Avoid wild animal shows, including circuses and those at local fairs.Support the federal Big Cat Public Safety Act to end the private ownership of big cats and end cruel cub petting operations. Follow PAWS on social media for the most up-to-date action you can take. Care for a PAWS tiger for a day with a $55 donationCelebrate our rescued tigers by making a $55 contribution today – the cost of care for one of our tigers for a day. Please consider making a monthly donation to supply the ongoing support our tigers need. Click here to donate.Amanda “Miss Kitty” Blake EstateWeekly eBay Auction to Benefit PAWS
Amanda Blake, known for her role as “Miss Kitty” on the television series “Gunsmoke”, graciously left the majority of her estate to PAWS when she passed away in 1989. It helped fund the elephant habitat at PAWS’ first sanctuary in Galt, California. Most of Amanda’s Gunsmoke memorabilia, as well as numerous personal items, were sold during estate sales held in the years following her death.Many of Amanda’s remaining treasures became part of the displays featured in the now-closed Amanda Blake Museum, once located on the grounds of PAWS’ Amanda Blake Memorial Wildlife Refuge in Herald, California. Other personal mementos were packed away in storage. A selection of these prized keepsakes are now being sold on eBay, with new items listed every week. All proceeds go to the care of the rescued and retired elephants, tigers, bears and other wild animals living at PAWS’ sanctuaries.Click here to view the items currently up for auction on eBay and to read more about Amanda Blake and her history with PAWS.THANK YOU!July Amazon Wish List Donors:Pamela Rogers-Ibitz: one 5 lb. bag of pumpkin seeds; one 4 lb. bag of almonds; one 3 lb. bag of walnuts; one 4 lb. bag of sunflower kernels. Daniel: one 3.3 lb. tub of Equithrive. Mary Warrick: three bottles of CosequinDS 132#. Pat Sides: one 5 lb. bag of Missing Link Skin & Coat; one bottle of AminAvast 60#. Staci Sanders: six 6.5 oz. bags of Diced Papaya. Steven Hicks: one 5 lb. box of oranges. Anonymous Donors: two sets of Walkie Talkies; one 10 lb. tub of Equithrive.We have chosen specific items that are needed at the sanctuary, which you can purchase directly from Amazon. We have an ongoing need for many of the products listed. Click here to review the items and donate. You can also review “wish list” items that are needed but not listed on Amazon. Click here for that list.Connect with us: ‌  ‌  ‌  ‌  ‌Share this newsletter: ‌  ‌…[Message clipped]  View entire messageReplyForward

Follow-up on Running of the Bulls in Spain

Three men have died in 24 hours from wounds sustained during bull-running festivals in eastern Spain. The three men all took part in Valencia’s bous al carrer (bull-running), where bulls run through tiny streets with people running ahead of them. Animal rights groups have been trying to ban this event for years and have held protests before this dangerous tradition.