• Don Lichterman

Historic Year for Animals in California, Preventing Animal Cruelty & Torture Act, COP, PAW, Fin Act!

Historic Year for Animals in California - Many Laws Passed. We are absolutely thrilled to announce that California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed a package of historic laws to protect animals including making it illegal to sell or produce fur, hunt bobcats, use wild animals in circuses, sell the skins of many exotic animals, as well as strengthening California’s anti-horse slaughter legislation!

With the deadline for Governor Newsom's decision rapidly approaching, and the future of almost a dozen pro-animal bills - including the fur ban - uncertain, we took urgent action.

We approached cartoonist Vance Lehmkuhl, who graciously created a cartoon for our efforts to influence Governor Newsom to make fur history in California. The cartoon featured Governor Newsom signing AB 44 alongside his childhood companion, Potter the otter. We featured this cartoon on a mobile billboard with a message to the public to make urgent calls in support of the bill. Our mobile billboard toured around the Governor’s office at the state’s capitol in Sacramento on Friday, the day before the Governor signed AB44 into law. 

We suspended coverage of other issues on our social media sites and asked our supporters through a variety of posts to make calls supporting all the animal bills on the Governor’s desk.

The efforts our California supporters this year, combined with the work of so many dedicated individuals and groups paid off. Within the past couple of months, Governor Newsom passed a ban on fur trapping (AB 273 by Assemblymember L. Gonzalez) and protections for migratory birds (AB 454 by Assemblymember Kalra). On Saturday, Governor Newsom signed a raft of important new animal protection measures:

  • Assembly Bill 44 bans the sale of fur throughout California and becomes the first state in the nation to make fur history. The bill was sponsored by Assemblymember Friedman. A

  • Assembly Bill 128 strengthens California's anti-horse slaughter laws by making it harder for kill-buyers to turn a profit.

  • Assembly Bill 1254 bans the trophy hunting of bobcats until 2025. Sponsored by Assemblymember Kamlager-Dove, the new law makes it unlawful to hunt, trap or otherwise “take” a bobcat except in specified circumstances such as with a depredation permit. 

  • Assembly Bill 1260 bans the trade in skins of many threatened species including sharks, hippos and caimans, and becomes law in 2022. Sponsored by Assemblymember Maienschein, it prevents the import and sale of exotic skins. Hippos and many reptiles were added to a list of other endangered or threatened species, including big cats, polar bears and dolphins.

  • Senate Bill 313 bans the use of wild animals in circuses. Senator Hueso’s Circus Cruelty Prevention Act forbids using exotic animals in circuses throughout the state. Elephants, bears, tigers, monkeys and other wild animals will benefit. 

  • Earlier in the week, Governor Newsom signed these important bills as well. 

  • Senate Bill 397 requires local transit operators to accept animal companions on public transit during emergency evacuations. The new law is an initiative of Senator Glazer.

  • Assembly Bill 415 protects human and animal victims of domestic violence. The new law was sponsored by Assemblymember Maienschein.

  • Assembly Bill 1162 protects the environment by banning hotels from providing miniature shampoo plastic bottles. Assemblymember Kalra championed the bill. 

“California is a leader when it comes to animal welfare and today that leadership includes banning the sale of fur,” said California Governor, Gavin Newsom. “But we are doing more than that. We are making a statement to the world that beautiful wild animals like bears and tigers have no place on trapeze wires or jumping through flames.

Just YouTube the videos showing the cruel way these animals – often stripped from their mothers as babies – are trained to do dangerous tricks. It’s deeply disturbing.”

In Defense of Animals and other animal protection organizations campaigned tirelessly to push this lifesaving legislation forward. Our supporters made hundreds of calls and signed tens of thousands of letters to protect animals from hunters and the fashion industry and can now celebrate these momentous victories for animals in California. We can’t thank you enough.

House Unanimously Approves Bill to Make Animal Cruelty a Federal Offense. Violators could face up to seven years in prison under the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act.

Animal cruelty would become a federal offense with a penalty of up to seven years in prison under a proposed expansion of an animal welfare law that won unanimous approval this week in the House of Representatives.

The Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act advanced through the House on Tuesday after a voice vote, which the law’s backers said they hoped would get the Senate to act soon on a companion bill.

Most of the animal cruelty laws on the books are at the state level, according to the Animal Legal Defense Fund.

The legislation would expand a 2010 law signed by President Barack Obama banning so-called crush videos that show animals being crushed, burned, drowned, suffocated, impaled or subjected to other forms of torture. In some of the videos, women with their faces hidden could be seen stamping on rabbits with spiked high heels.

Animal welfare advocates said that while the current law prohibited the production and distribution of crush videos, it had failed to address the animal cruelty depicted in them. So Representatives Ted Deutch and Vern Buchanan, who are both from Florida and serve on opposite sides of the political aisle, sought to broaden the law.

“This bill sends a clear message that our society does not accept cruelty against animals,” Mr. Deutch, a Democrat, said in a statement. “We’ve received support from so many Americans from across the country and across the political spectrum.”

“Animal rights activists have stood up for living things that do not have a voice,” he continued. “Law enforcement officers have sought a federal overlay to help them stop animal abusers who are likely to commit acts of violence against people. And animal lovers everywhere know this is simply the right thing to do.”

Mr. Buchanan, a Republican, said in a statement that the bill’s prospects of becoming law were favorable.

“This is a landmark bill that establishes for the first time a federal offense against the malicious torturing of animals,” Mr. Buchanan said.

He added, “We are optimistic it will pass the Senate, which has already supported the bill in two previous sessions of Congress.”

The Humane Society Legislative Fund characterized Tuesday’s House vote as a watershed moment and pointed out that the bill’s supporters included the National Sheriffs’ Association, the Fraternal Order of Police, the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys, the National Children’s Advocacy Center and Domestic Violence Intervention Services.

Kitty Block, the chief executive of the Humane Society, and Sara Amundson, president of the organization’s legislative fund, said in a post on the legislative fund’s blog that getting final approval for the bill was critical.

“We know by now that animal cruelty is an indicator of social pathology and those who commit crimes against humans often start out by hurting animals,” the post said. “It is a pattern of violence that is both common and well-documented, and it adds to the urgency of passing this common sense law.”

Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut and an original co-sponsor of the companion Senate bill, said in an interview Wednesday that brutality toward animals was often a gateway to other violent behavior.

“Animal cruelty is not an isolated act in many instances,” Mr. Blumenthal said. “The penalties should be stiff to act effectively as a deterrent.”

The White House declined to comment Wednesday night when asked if President Trump planned to sign the legislation if it reaches his desk. The administration typically does not weigh in when the House votes to suspend the rules and take a voice vote on uncontroversial legislation.

One of the most jarring animal cruelty cases involved Michael Vick, whose National Football League career as the franchise quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons was interrupted by his prosecution for his role in a dogfighting ring.

Mr. Vick served 18 months in a federal prison and two months of home confinement after pleading guilty to conspiracy in operating an interstate dogfighting enterprise. By Neil Vigdor / NY TImes!

We have tremendous good news for animals to share with you!  On October 30th, the New York City Council will VOTE on a historic package of animal rights bills, including the Carriage Horse Heat Relief Bill, Intro 1425. 

As you know we've been pushing hard for passage of this important bill which would end the suffering of carriage horses forced to pull heavy carriages in brutal, humid heat waves every summer.  For years NYCLASS has documented, exposed and reported carriage horses being forced to work in dangerously extreme heat and humidity, suffering from heat stress and enduring hellish conditions every summer. It's time to END that cruelty!

On October 30th history will be made for animals when the City Council votes on the Carriage Horse Heat Relief Bill! We are confident we can pass this bill into law but we need your help with one phone call before the vote.

TAKE ACTION If you live in any of the 5 boroughs of New York City, please CALL your NYC Council Member before October 30th and urge them to vote YES on Intro 1425, the Carriage Horse Heat Relief Bill on October 30th. 

Find your Council Member here:  https://council.nyc.gov/districts/

JOIN US at City Hall on October 30th as history is made for animals!  

We will meet to rally outside the gates of City Hall on the Broadway side at 9AM before the Council Meeting starts at 1:30PM.

BREAKING NEWS: Macy's and Bloomingdale's to go FUR-FREE!

Giant retailers Macy's and Bloomingdale's announced Monday that they will stop selling ALL fur in their 900 stores by early 2021. That means their 56 fur salons will be SHUT DOWN and they won’t sell ANY fur in their stores! This is a huge win for animals and for activism. Macy's is the largest department store in the United States. Decades of relentless activism, protests, public education and outreach led to this victory.

Macy's and Bloomingdale's now join a growing list of hundreds of designers and retailers worldwide that are dropping fur.  The barbaric cruelty inherent in producing fur is no longer acceptable for many people, and designers and retailers can no longer deny this. In a press release announcing their decision to go fur-free Macy's said: “Over the past two years, we have been closely following consumer and brand trends, listening to our customers and researching alternatives to fur. We’ve listened to our colleagues, including direct feedback from our Go Green Employee Resource Group, and we have met regularly on this topic with the Humane Society of the United States and other NGOs. Macy’s private brands are already fur free so expanding this practice across all Macy’s, Inc. is the natural next step,” said Jeff Gennette, chairman and chief executive officer of Macy’s, Inc.

Much progress is being made for animals, but we have much more work to do to help end the suffering of carriage horses and so many other animals worldwide. We can't change the world for animals without your continued support. Please consider helping in our fight for animals!

Over the summer, the Trump administration announced distressing changes to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) — severely weakening one of our nation’s most important animal protection laws. Wildlife is disappearing at a rapid rate — now more than ever we need strong and effective laws protecting some of the Earth’s most vulnerable residents.

The PAW and FIN ACT would reverse these disastrous rollbacks.

Please ask your federal senators and representative to co-sponsor the PAW and FIN Act (H.R. 4348/S.2491) and restore the ESA today.

The ESA has prevented the extinction of numerous iconic American animals including the northern gray wolf, the bald eagle, the Florida manatee, and the grizzly bear. It has also provided critical protections for the many endangered wild animals — from tigers to lions to lemurs — languishing in captivity across our country.

Over the years, the ESA has faced many challenges, including attacks led by major industries that place profit over animals’ lives and habitat protection. Don’t let corporations profit while animals suffer — ask Congress to support the PAW and FIN Act.

October has been a huge month in the fight to save the Endangered Species Act. Center volunteers organized a national day of action and made visits to 75 congressional offices, resulting in nine new cosponsors to the PAW and FIN Conservation Act.

As Halloween approaches we’re bringing you another chance to keep endangered species in the spotlight. 

Join us for our #ExtinctionIsScary campaign.

Let’s use this spookiest of holidays to raise awareness about Trump’s gutting of the Endangered Species Act. 

Here’s how it works:

  • Dress up as your favorite endangered species. You can download a printable mask to help get you started or invent your own animal costume;

  • or Carve an endangered species pumpkin. Download one of these printable stencils as a guide. 


Take a picture of yourself and your trick-or-treating crew or your endangered-species pumpkin, then post it to social media using #ProtectSpecies and #ExtinctionIsScary.

Thank you for all your hard work in this fight. We can’t wait to see how you express your creativity this Halloween.

California has just become the first state to totally ban the sale of fur within their borders. This is a huge step towards ending the needless suffering of innocent animals, but it's only one state. Hawaii also has legislation in the works that would do the same, but we need to pressure them to actually pass it.

Will you sign the petition asking Hawaii to become the second fur-free state in the United States?

The bill points out that while fur was once used to provide protective clothing, we no longer actually need it. Now, it's become something that's used only for fashion — and the demand for fur no longer justifies the unnecessary killing and cruel treatment of animals.

For millions of fuzzy animals who are senselessly slaughtered for their fur, this would be a huge step. The vast majority of them are raised and killed on fur farms, where there is little oversight. The deplorable, inhumane living conditions there take a major psychological and physical toll on furbearers — and they've continued to be exposed again and again around the world.

Even fur that comes from wild animals is the result of suffering at the hands of trappers who have an arsenal of tools used to maim and kill, including leghold traps, body-crushing Conibear traps and snares.

Hawaii could be the next in this important trend of protecting animals.

Will you sign on to ask them to ban fur now?

Not only would this help protect furbearing animals from needless suffering, but it would also send a strong message that there's nothing fashionable about cruelty to animals.

The slaughter of fur-bearing animals is haunting, terrifying and violent⁠—anal electrocution or gassing with a lethal dose of carbon monoxide. Their suffering is immeasurable in both life and death. We can't put a stop to these horrifying practices without you. Their time is rapidly ticking away. Be a hero today.

Animals on fur-farms, most commonly foxes and minks, are treated as objects, left to rot away in hard wire cages with painful, debilitating illnesses and injuries until they're killed. These animals experience zero stimulation, companionship or ability to live naturally. Will you fight for them and all of the animals who need your help today?

There is no excuse for this cruelty⁠—especially "fashion."

The killing continues: 228 greyhounds injured, 73 killed at tracks so far this year

Irish Council Against Blood Sports ICABS

228 greyhounds suffered injuries and 73 were killed at greyhound tracks around Ireland since the start of 2019. The latest sickening statistics were revealed by Agriculture Minister Michael Creed in response to a Dail Question from Maureen O’Sullivan TD.

“Bord na gCon [Irish Greyhound Board] has informed me that of the 67,220 greyhounds raced from 1st January 2019 to date, 0.34% of these have been injured while 0.11% have been euthanized.”

Minister Creed’s reference to “67,220 greyhounds” is misleading - this figure refers to race entries and not individual dogs. As revealed at a Public Accounts Committee meeting in September, “the current dog pool for greyhound racing comprises approximately 3,600 animals”. This means that the percentage of dogs injured and killed is around 20 times higher than the figure quoted by the Minister, i.e over 6 per cent of the dogs in the racing pool have been injured so far this year and 2 per cent have been killed.

This brings to 1,787 the number of greyhounds injured and 579 the number killed at tracks around Ireland in the past five years alone.

In his response to Deputy O’Sullivan, Minister Creed went on to state that “the percentage of greyhounds injured or put to sleep has shown a downward trend in the last 5 year period. This is as a result of a continued focus by Bord na gCon on track maintenance and improvement procedures, together with the cancellation of racing where it is determined that there is a risk due to factors such as severe weather.”

Available figures for the past four years, show that greyhound injuries and deaths actually increased from 422 injuries/122 deaths in 2015 to 427 injuries/139 deaths in 2016. The decreases in 2017 (357 injuries/124 deaths) and 2018 (353 injuries/121 deaths) followed the closure of Harold’s Cross stadium in 2017 and a temporary 4-month stop to racing at Shelbourne Park stadium due to protests over the sale of Harold’s Cross.

These sickening Irish Greyhound Board figures are based on “reported” injuries and deaths, suggesting that the actual number could be even higher. They do not include the greyhounds injured at tracks and later killed elsewhere.

Greyhounds are not only dying at tracks. As revealed in the recent “RTE Investigates: Greyhounds Running for Their Lives” documentary, around 6,000 are mercilessly killed every year simply because they are not fast enough to win races - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYTb2qBjlMM

In the past nine years, 2,782 greyhounds were also killed in dog pounds around the country.

Read the full Dail question and answer at https://www.kildarestreet.com/wrans/?id=2019-10-15a.75


2019 (January to October) 228 injuries, 73 deaths

2018: 353 Injuries. 121 Deaths

2017: 357 Injuries. 124 Deaths

2016: 427 Injuries. 139 Deaths

2015: 422 Injuries. 122 Deaths


Another €16.8 million of scarce public funds has been allocated to greyhound racing in Budget 2020. Since 2001, greyhound racing has received more than a quarter of a billion euros of taxpayers' money. Please contact your local TDs and demand that they stop this latest funding pledge by voting AGAINST the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations 2019 next month. Visit the Oireachtas website for contact details for TDs https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/members/tds/?term=/ie/oireachtas/house/dail/32

Say NO to the cruel greyhound industry - don't attend greyhound races or fundraisers/hen parties/office parties held at greyhound tracks

Three Circus Animals Escaped, Two Were Shot and Killed. When Will This Country End Circus Animal Slavery? Sign to Demand Change.

In little more than a year, several escaped circus animals in Germany have made headlines. Of the three most recent cases, two have ended in tragedy.

First, a bear escaped from a well-known zoo — the Eifel Zoo in Luenebach — and was shot dead.

Less than a week later a male African elephant named Kenia escaped a circus in the town of Neuwied. The pachyderm was seen wandering the city's streets. Video of his short-lived freedom shows him calmly walking through the city. News articles joked that Kenia took a "stroll" through the small town. In reality, only prompt intervention by authorities and his keepers kept him from being killed.

Unfortunately, that wasn't the case for yet another German circus animal. Two circus zebras in the northern city of Rostock, Germany got out and attempted to make their way to freedom. After several efforts at trapping them, only one of the two was captured, the other one was shot dead.

When will these completely avoidable tragedies end?

Animals have been banned from circuses in many European countries due to research that shows how circus situations are traumatic for all animals, in particular highly intelligent and social animals such as elephants. Wild animals should not be used as entertainment, they shouldn't be kept in tiny cages and they shouldn't be dragged from city to city.

These beautiful, living, thinking beings deserve to be free, not forced to do our bidding from their births to their eventual, untimely deaths.

Please join in asking Germany to follow the lead of other European countries and end animal slavery now, banning animals from being used and abused in circuses.

These Animals are Losing Their Minds

Animals held prisoner in pseudo-sanctuaries, traveling shows, and roadside displays are forced to spend their lives behind bars to entertain the public. They endure relentless frustration, neglect, and sometimes even abuse from the people who are supposed to be caring for them. This stress causes many of them to rock, sway, or pace endlessly—a condition called “zoochosis.” Some even resort to hurting themselves by chewing on their own body parts or pulling out their fur or feathers. You can help animals trapped in roadside zoos! https://headlines.peta.org/take-actio...

Cruelty to animals on and behind the stage: These video recordings show, the abuse of bears for show purposes also continues behind the scenes. It's clear to see how reluctant the bear is to follow the trainer's demands - unfortunately, he has no choice. No animal should suffer like this! Please help us to make a species-appropriate life possible for these bears in one of our shelters and sign for a legal ban on these bear shows: http://bit.ly/SaddestBearsFrance

Baby bears are torn from their mothers when they’re just weeks old so Oswald’s Bear Ranch can profit from photo ops with the terrified babies. Many bears have prematurely died at the facility and at least half a dozen have been slaughtered. https://support.peta.org/page/3549/ac...

Bel Aire Police Department. A wounded, battered dog was found lying in a ditch on the side of a road in Wichita, Kansas with severe lacerations and punctures covering his face and neck. Presumably a bait dog used as a “chew toy” to train dogs to fight, he was dehydrated, in shock, and covered in blood.

A good Samaritan found the dog and contacted the Bel Aire police department, who were able stabilize him before rescue Beauties and Beasts, Inc. took charge. They named him Steele and ensured he received veterinary treatment, but unfortunately, it wasn’t enough. The damage to his abused body was too great; his organs began shutting down, and his body went septic. He tragically passed as a result of his injuries.

As of yet, the police do not have a suspect in custody. The person or people responsible for Steele’s abuse, abandonment, and ultimate death must be apprehended as more dogs may be in immediate danger.

Sign the petition to thank the Bel Aire police department for their quick response in trying to save Steele, and urge them to now use all available resources to find the perpetrators and protect other dogs from the same torture he endured.

The Bel Aire Police Department is asking anyone with information to contact them at 316-744-6000 or on their Facebook post about this horrible act of cruelty.

Woman Convicted of Extreme Neglect of Horse

On July 12, 2019, a man spotted a horse in a ditch in Carrol County, Mississippi, and went to his aid. The horse had become entangled in the rope that kept him captive, and he slid into a ditch by the road where he was kept. The man freed him and contacted law enforcement.

Carroll County Deputy Robert Anderson investigated the report. Having confirmed the condition of the horse and his surroundings, he contacted In Defense of Animals Justice for Animals Campaign Director, Doll Stanley, for assistance. They obtained a seizure order for the horse.

When seized, Stanley discovered that the horse, now named Jericho, was severely malnourished and had been kept under a carport with a range of hazardous items. He was also forced to stand on a brick pad, which was very likely to have caused him considerable pain and discomfort.

Two horse advocates from a regional ranch that rescues and cares for horses in need aided in removing Jericho. As Jericho was led to freedom, his “guardian,” Allie Estelle Blount, repeatedly claimed, “There’s nothing wrong with my horse.” Jericho is now regaining his health, but he has a long road to recovery ahead of him.

Stanley filed an affidavit in Carroll County Justice Court for animal cruelty under § 97-41-1: Cruelty to living creatures; a misdemeanor that carries a fine of up to $1,000 and up to six months of incarceration.

On July 29, 2019, Stanley presented this incident to the Carroll County Board of Supervisors as another example as to why the county must pass an ordinance prohibiting the tethering of “livestock” as a primary means of confinement.

On October 3, 2019, Allie Estelle Blount appeared in court after being charged with animal cruelty for the severe neglect of her horse, Jericho. In front of the judge, Blount claimed that her emaciated horse lost hundreds of pounds in three weeks due to eating her peach tree. She also claimed that he was her therapy horse. These false, absurd claims did not fool the judge.

Allie Estelle Blount was convicted of animal cruelty, was ordered not to keep animals, and initially fined $500. The prosecutor then convinced the judge that the fine would be a burden for Blount and the County because she did not have the ability to pay.

Animal advocates are upset with this lenient ruling, which further fuels society’s call for change in the judicial system where animals are concerned. It seems the judicial system is moving toward helping offenders to become more viable members of society, and part of this plan includes not burdening individuals who struggle financially with fines that may cause them to continue to fail themselves and their communities. 

We are grateful that at least Jericho has been taken from his thoroughly inadequate guardian and that she is not allowed to “care for” more animals as it is plainly obvious that she is incapable of recognizing one who is starving to death in front of her.

Please consider making a donation to support our critical animal advocacy and rescue efforts.

COK’s shocking high-speed slaughter footage on NowThis

Last month, the USDA finalized a rule deregulating pig slaughter and eliminating line speed caps under the guise of “modernization” -- a dangerous step backwards at a time when the public is hungry for transparency. NowThis has just released a new video highlighting the horrors Compassion Over Killing documented a pilot plant for this program: WATCH & SHARE TODAY to hold the USDA accountable for putting animals, workers, and consumers on the line!

The New Swine Slaughter Inspection System (NSIS) transfers many federal inspector duties into the hands of employees of slaughter plants themselves, where there is a vested interest in keeping the slaughter line running at all costs. And, most alarmingly, the rule obliterates all line speed caps. The plants are now allowed to run the slaughter line at any speed they choose.

COK has fought this deregulation since our 2015 undercover investigation of Quality Pork Processors (QPP), a supplier of Hormel and one of the fastest slaughter plants in the nation operating under the NSIS pilot program and killing approximately 1,300 pigs each hour—or one pig every 5 seconds. QPP is held up by the USDA as a model example, but COK’s video reveals the horrors hidden behind closed doors: workers beating, shocking, and dragging animals as they struggle to keep up with line speeds, and pigs covered in feces and pus-filled abscess processed for human consumption—with a USDA inspection seal of approval. 

Our efforts against this dangerous rule have been joined by the voices of more than a quarter million of you, and in April 2018, COK’s former investigator who witnessed the horrors of high-speed slaughter firsthand delivered your petition signatures to USDA headquarters in Washington, DC.

In its fight against NSIS, COK is joined by dozens of other animal, environmental, consumer, and worker protection organizations. Yet instead of preserving bare minimum protections for workers and animals in an already dangerous industry, the USDA’s decision to expand this reckless program nationwide will put meat industry profits first.

Help us take the USDA to task for its misguided decision: Watch & share the new NowThis video TODAY -- and encourage your friends and family to make their next meal a meat-free one!

I’m excited to introduce a new resource for legal professionals and advocates interested in animal law.

The Brooks Institute, a premier think tank in animal law, policy and study issues, is collaborating with Harvard Law School’s Animal Law and Policy Program on a weekly Digest in animal law and policy.

The Brooks Animal Law Digest will provide research on the most recent developments in the field of animal law and policy including legislative, case law, agency and academic updates (as well as relevant items in Environmental Law, Food Law, and Administrative Law). If you’d like to subscribe to the weekly Digest, sign up here.

The Brooks Institute is the platinum sponsor of the Animal Law Conference.

Learn more about the Brooks Animal Law Digest here.

Trapping Is Cruel and Dangerous!

Each year, millions of animals are caught in traps, killed in the name of “nuisance” wildlife control or for their fur. Animals caught in traps die slowly – by drowning, predation, exposure, shock, injury, or blood loss – sometimes after languishing for days.

Myths about trapping abound. Trapping apologists frequently claim that trapping is humane, tightly regulated, selective, and necessary. But, in truth, trapping is a cruel practice that causes great suffering. And, trapping is everywhere – public, private, and even protected lands and recreational areas are not immune. As a result, targeted and non-targeted animals (like household pets and endangered species), and even humans, can fall victim to these traps.

Enough is enough! It's time to tell trappers to "Shut Your Traps!"

This October, Born Free USA is doing just that with our new, limited-edition #ShutYourTraps t-shirt bearing the bold, compassionate message: "You're either against trapping or you're wrong!" Purchase yours today to support our work against this cruel practice and send the message that you are 100% against trapping!

Portland welcomes the Animal Law Conference back this year!

The 27th Annual Animal Law Conference Representing Animals: Elevating Animal Status on October 25-27, 2019 in Portland, Oregon.

Are you ready to vote for animals!

Along with a coalition of hundreds of organizations across the country, we're urging our members to update their voter registrations and to make sure that they have met the qualifications to vote in their communities.

Together with our partners, we are asking you to be vote ready—and ready to make your voice heard in our democracy.

Please take a moment to check your voter registration using this simple tool.

In order to continue to give a voice for animals in the halls of Congress and state houses across the country, we have to ensure we elect humane minded candidates—and you can't do that if you're not registered to vote. So update your voter registration today, ask your friends and family to do the same, and Get Political for Animals!

Become a Partner in Protection

Our Partners in Protection Program makes it easy to help animals throughout the year.

Inspire Your Animal Activism this October with Online Events!

We've got lots in store for you and your vegan activism this October. Join in two online summits to heal the planet, as well as explore new strategies to revolutionize our agriculture system, and meet motivational guru Justice King. READ MORE

Take Action, Responsibility & Wildlife...

"Corporations Are People Too My Friends."
Our companies are known for creating products that enhance people's lives.  Through Sunset Corporation of America and its companies, we’re equally dedicated to improving lives.  Our commitment extends to helping local communities, fostering better educational systems, supporting the arts and culture, helping disadvantaged youth, protecting and improving the environment, animal welfare, wildlife issues and encouraging employee volunteerism.

The Sustainable Action Network (SAN), A Don Lichterman non-profit organization dedicated to building a global community raising awareness of corruption, injustice and the need for action across a full range of issues impacting people and animal/wildlife welfare around the world, such as conservation, climate change, campaign law, lobbying, government action and rescue work. SAN’s vision is to create safer world, free from political, environmental, and social oppression, where all the inhabitants of Earth can live in harmony within their own natural environments. Our commitment extends to helping local communities, fostering better educational systems, supporting the arts and culture, helping disadvantaged youth, protecting and improving the environment, animal welfare, wildlife issues and encouraging employee volunteerism.

Activism and Sustainability:

  • Gun Safety & Gun Laws

  • Cruelty Free

  • Death Penalty

  • Demand Action

  • Sustainable Action Network

Fairness and Equality:

  • Grammy District Advocacy

  • Privatization

  • Voters Issues & Gerrymandering

  • Private Prisons & the War on Drugs

  • Finance, Housing & the Economy Corporate Responsibility:

  • Candidates, Bills, Laws & Protections

  • Wildlife & Oceania

  • Labeling & Transparency

  • Comprehensive Captivity & Hunting Results Databases