Court rules California’s foie gras ban is constitutional

By on July 15, 2020 with 0 Comments

In yet another court victory against foie gras cruelty, a California judge yesterday ruled that the state’s foie gras sales ban is entirely constitutional, reaffirming California’s authority to keep cruel products out of its marketplace. The latest challenge to the law, which went into effect in 2012, was brought by out-of-state producers looking to promote the sale of this cruel product within California. The judge denied their request to strike down the law, and warned that the filing of any more similar challenges to the constitutionality of the law will result in court-ordered sanctions.

The court also noted that the law only bans the sale of foie gras in California, and was never intended to be an absolute ban on all possession or personal consumption of foie gras. Thus, the ruling does not change the legal landscape of foie gras sales in California, as some media outlets have erroneously reported. As the court explained, the ruling does not affect sellers of foie gras “who are located within California (e.g., restaurants),” which have been prohibited from selling such products for years.

The challenge defeated today was the latest in a series of ultimately unsuccessful challenges mounted by foie gras producers to a landmark law that does away with the sales of one of the worst abuses of animals raised for food. To produce foie gras, geese are typically fed through metal pipes forced down their throats, making their livers blow up to 10 times their natural size—a process known as gavage. The birds are then killed and their livers harvested as a fatty “delicacy.”

As the cruelty involved in foie gras production has come to light, it’s been increasingly regarded with distaste around the world. More than a dozen countries, including Denmark, Finland, Germany, Israel and the United Kingdom, have either prohibited force-feeding for foie gras production or interpreted it as illegal under existing anti-cruelty laws.

Californians have already made it clear that they will not stand for cruelty against animals raised for food. In 2018 the state passed a law against cage confinement that’s often referred to as the world’s strongest farm animal protection law. This victory is yet another reason why companies and producers clinging to abusive practices like force-feeding, battery cages and gestation crates should discard these practices once and for all.

South Carolina pet owners sue Petland for selling them sick puppies

By on July 15, 2020 with 1 Comment
South Carolina pet owners sue Petland for selling them sick puppies

Newlyweds Megan and Tim Madden were looking to grow their family when they saw a soft-coated wheaten terrier in one of Petland’s targeted Instagram advertisements. It was love at first sight. But when the Maddens met the dog—who they later named Chewie—at the store, they . . . 

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Breaking: HSUS/HSLF report identifies key U.S. policy changes needed to avoid another pandemic

By on July 13, 2020 with 2 Comments
Breaking: HSUS/HSLF report identifies key U.S. policy changes needed to avoid another pandemic

Recently, the United Nations identified some of the top drivers of zoonotic diseases, like COVID-19, that spread from animals to humans. Not surprisingly, the top three factors specified align exactly with issues the Humane Society family of organizations named in May in our own global . . . 

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Right whales are now ‘critically endangered’—just a step away from extinction

By on July 10, 2020 with 4 Comments
Right whales are now ‘critically endangered’—just a step away from extinction

In late June, the body of a dead North Atlantic right whale calf was found floating off the coast of New Jersey—a victim of two boat strikes, according to a preliminary analysis by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. While this would have been a . . . 

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Spending bills move up in Congress, with provisions for gray wolves, non-animal testing methods and ending wildlife markets

By on July 9, 2020 with 1 Comment
Spending bills move up in Congress, with provisions for gray wolves, non-animal testing methods and ending wildlife markets

Provisions for funding programs to protect wild horses and burros, gray wolves, animals used in research and testing, as well as elephants and lions, who are commonly the target of American trophy hunters, were among several animal welfare measures approved this week by House appropriations . . . 

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Run, Bruno, run from Missouri

By on July 9, 2020 with 2 Comments
Run, Bruno, run from Missouri

For a few days now, Bruno the bear has been something of a celebrity around the world. Hundreds of people have flocked to catch a glimpse of this wandering bear who is reported to have walked to Missouri all the way from Wisconsin, journeying through . . . 

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Victory! Federal appeals court agrees Yellowstone grizzly bears should remain protected from trophy hunters

By on July 8, 2020 with 8 Comments
Victory! Federal appeals court agrees Yellowstone grizzly bears should remain protected from trophy hunters

A federal appeals court has agreed that Yellowstone grizzly bears should continue to receive protection under the U.S. Endangered Species Act, ensuring that these iconic American carnivores will not be hunted for trophies. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a unanimous opinion today upholding . . . 

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HSI undercover investigation shows foxes bludgeoned, skinned alive on Asian fur farms

By on July 7, 2020 with 6 Comments
HSI undercover investigation shows foxes bludgeoned, skinned alive on Asian fur farms

The cruelty of fur is on terrifying display in these scenes from a fur farm, captured on video by investigators working with Humane Society International. Foxes are pulled out of their cages, one by one, usually by their tails as they try to cling to . . . 

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House subcommittees boost funds for key animal protection measures on wildlife trafficking, slaughterhouse kill speeds and horse soring and slaughter

By on July 7, 2020 with 3 Comments
House subcommittees boost funds for key animal protection measures on wildlife trafficking, slaughterhouse kill speeds and horse soring and slaughter

Congress has begun its annual process of funding federal departments, agencies and programs, and last night two House subcommittees voted to include several crucial provisions benefiting animals in their FY2021 appropriations bills. The Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee bill presented by Chairman Sanford Bishop, D-Ga., included vital . . . 

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Indian state of Nagaland bans dog meat trade

By on July 6, 2020 with 5 Comments
Indian state of Nagaland bans dog meat trade

We have more good news to report in our global fight against the dog meat trade. The Indian state of Nagaland last Friday announced an end to all import, trade and sales of live dogs and dog meat. The ban would end the terrible suffering . . . 

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Mississippi passes bill making animal torture an automatic felony; Iowa is now the only outlier in nation

By on July 2, 2020 with 7 Comments
Mississippi passes bill making animal torture an automatic felony; Iowa is now the only outlier in nation

We have good news to share from Mississippi and Iowa, the only two states in the nation without a law on the books that would make acts of animal torture, like burning, drowning and intentional starvation, an automatic felony. Recently, Mississippi’s state legislature passed a . . . 

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Breaking news: Nation’s top science panel recommends VA should stop most research on dogs

By on July 1, 2020 with 12 Comments
Breaking news: Nation’s top science panel recommends VA should stop most research on dogs

Three years ago, Americans were stunned to learn that puppies and adult dogs were being subjected to gruesome surgeries, induced heart attacks and other invasive procedures, and then being euthanized, as part of taxpayer-funded medical experiments being carried out at the McGuire Medical Center in . . . 

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