Mission Statement

My Mission Statement

by Kay Pfaltz

     Not every dog can travel to Paris and dine in the best restaurants. Nor perhaps would every dog want to. But every dog should be able to enjoy a good life, chain and cage free, abuse free, a life of walks, good food, and joy. 
     For this reason and to this end, let us all support our local shelters, be it by donating money or by volunteering. We can also encourage others not to buy from backyard breeders or pet stores who almost unanimously support puppy mills and other abusive practices. (See Puppy Mills below.)
     I also ask you dog-lovers to extend your love and compassion to all animals, particularly farm animals who lead the most atrocious lives of all. Factory, or industrial, farming kills over 9 billion animals per year. But it is not their deaths which are so horrific, but rather their lives. Factory-farm animals never know one good day. How can we help them? Choosing a vegan diet is one way. But if that doesn’t suit, then buy meat and dairy locally from small farms where you can see the animals roaming around. An animal allowed to be what he is supposed to be is generally a happy animal. But the conditions of cows in overcrowded, filthy feed lots, or pigs crammed into cages so small they are unable to move and go mad from frustration, boredom and stress, are not natural. The poultry industry is perhaps the worst of all, and no legislature exists to protect these birds. Anyone who has ever known a chicken or cow or pig or mouse or rat, individually, knows that these animals have feelings and emotions just like our dogs and cats. A chicken will lovingly lay her head across your arm and enjoy being pet. (See Factory Farming below.)
    Talk to people, but if, out of years of conditioning, they turn a deaf ear towards you when you bring up the plight of animals, try another tactic. Farm animals are pumped full of antibiotics, hormones and fed manure and junk food. It’s no surprise that we’re becoming resistant to even the strongest antibiotics, making major pandemics inevitable. It’s no surprise that we have obesity in children due to the quantities of growth hormones they're ingesting in meat. It’s no surprise girls are not only menstruating at ages nine and ten, but developing breast cancer at earlier ages as well. Again, all due to the estrogens consumed in meat. If this is not bad enough, we are polluting our water sources by the run-off from factory farms with antibiotics, hormones, and waste by the tons. And if you think the meat industry is abusive to animals, the dairy industry is in many ways much worse.
    Let’s also be aware if we support or buy goods from companies that test on animals. Laboratory animals lead possibly the most miserable lives of all; they live scared and often very painful lives, some never once feeling the outdoor air or seeing the sun. It doesn’t have to be like this. Sophisticated research methods, such as computer models, cell cultures, and human clinical and epidemiological studies are more accurate, less expensive and less time-consuming than animal experiments. Yet between 60 - 100 million animals still suffer each year because special interest groups (those who supply the cages, or breed the animals, the drug companies themselves) have a stake in their suffering. And we the tax payers foot the bill. Ninety-two out of every 100 drugs that pass animal tests fail in clinical trials in people, and in the U.S. alone, more than 100,000 human deaths occur by drugs that were successful on animals. By becoming aware, we can begin to change this. Talk to people and let's see the end of unnecessary animal testing, and perhaps save more human lives in the process. (See Laboratory Testing on Animals below. Warning: not for the faint of heart.)
     Let’s be the change we wish to see.

The following are some of the organizations proceeds from my books help support, many highly rated on Charity Navigator:

National

In Defense of Animals - Defends rights, welfare and habitats of animals. Works to end animal
abuse and exploitation around the world: www.idausa.org

Best Friends Animal Society -Renowned no-kill sanctuary in Kanab, Utah: bestfriends.org


Farm Sanctuary - Helps animals rescued from factory farms: www.farmsanctuary.org

The Humane Farming Association - Helps farm animals, often the most overlooked of all: www.hfa.org

NAVS, National Antivivisection Society - Supports alternative means of testing to avoid use of testing on animals: www.NAVS.org

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine: PCRM: www.pcrm.org

Beagle Freedom Project - Finds homes for beagles who've spent their entire lives behind bars who would otherwise be killed after their lives of testing: www.beaglefreedomprofject.org

Without a healthy environment, none of us thrive. We need help out our planet now more than ever.

Environmental Defense Fund - www.edf.org

Sierra Club - www.sierraclub.org

Nature Conservancy - www.nature.org

Local

Caring for Creatures, Palmyra, Virgina: www.caringforcreatures.com

Almost Home Pet Adoption, Nelson County SPCA, Lovingston, Virginia: www.nelsonspca.org

Rockfish Wildlife Sanctuary, Charlottesville, Virginia: www.RockfishWildlifeSanctuary.org

The Mosby Foundation: www.themosbyfoundation.org

Oregon Dachshund Rescue: www.odr-inc.org

Dachshund Rescue and Placement: www.doxiekeeper.net

International

SOI Dog Foundataion: www.soidog.org

Animal Aid Unlimited - (See story under What's New, What's Good)  www.animalaidunlimited.org

For reading on the subject of animal welfare, one of the most beautifully written, and informative and presausive books is Matthew Scully's DOMINION: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy. For a review of DOMINION, see below.

Other exceptional books on the subject include: Jane Goodall's HARVEST FOR HOPE, Judy Carman's PEACE TO ALL BEINGS, and Jeffrey Moussaieff Mason's DOGS NEVER LIE ABOUT LOVE, and THE PIG WHO SANG TO THE MOON.

WARNING: The following photos are graphic and disturbing and while I don't wish to focus on the pain animals endure, neither do I wish to turn away from their pain. I do wish to educate people about what is going on behind the walls of university labs or industrial farms. For every sickening photograph, I offer a picture of beauty and hope, smybolic of the world in which we can live if become aware, speak out, support and try to help so that these visions of peace become our reality. Thank you.

Laboratory Testing on Animals:

Many stores such as Whole Foods carry products not tested on animals. Find out if your favourite products use animal testing. If uncertain, visit the National Antivivisection Society's website for a list of cruelty-free products. There are many! www.Navs.org

Cruelty-free list of companies who do not test on animals: www.navs.org/cruelty-free/product-search#.Uj3GTBDlUYQ

Support alternative means of research and medicine. Support the Beagle Freedom Project which works with labs, sending lab beagles to homes after their years behind bars instead of euthanizing them. www.beaglefreedomproject.org

Thank you for caring. Let's be the change we want to see and see this:

becomes this:

And this:

will become this:

Thank you.

Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy by Matthew Scully, St. Martin’s Griffin

     Reviewed by Kay Pfaltz originally published in The Echo Magazine, Charlottesville, VA.

      An Avowed Carnivore Goes Vegetarian

          What does it take to change? I know for many vegetarians it was reading Peter Singer’s Animal Liberation. For me, animal lover, yet ardent meat eater and fox hunter, it was a gradual process that led me to the point I am now, most closely allied with the Jains of India who kill nothing, a blend of the eastern religions which speak of higher spiritual evolution through pacifism. One doesn’t, however, arrive at such a point in life without help, so I say thank you to Matthew Scully author of Dominion.

         Why, Matthew Scully asks, is cruelty to a puppy appalling and cruelty to anonymous livestock or laboratory animals by the billions a matter of social indifference? This is the kind of question that erudite and compassionate Scully raises within the 400 pages of Dominion, in prose so beautiful you want to read it over and over experiencing his sense of kindness, intelligence, and logic, realizing that never once does he come across as self-righteous even in the midst of painting a picture of appalling cruelty. Be forewarned, however, certain chapters are not for the faint of heart. Although first published in 2002, I didn’t read Dominion until this year, but it is easily the best book I read in 2006, both in content and in style. I would urge any student of literature to leaf through enjoying Scully’s beautiful command of language, and animal advocates will cheer his thorough research and extensive knowledge of the subject.    

         Matthew Scully, ex-speech writer for President George W. Bush, is a Christian conservative. As such, one might think he offers at best a new perspective beside the many books already written on the subject of animal exploitation, and at worst, assuming his motives are political or economic, nothing. Yet as a Christian, Scully shows us the true meaning of the word, not what the extreme right, in co-opting the term for their personal agenda, has done with it:

       "Many of today’s cruelties come at the hands of people quick to identify themselves as good Christian folk. It is galling. If the exercise of examining the words of the Bible will at least spare us the sanctimonious airs of those who wantonly kill or mistreat animals, as if beckoned ever onward into field, forest, or factory farm by the Good Lord himself, that would be a small victory."

         As a conservative and realist, Scully offers the hope that maybe, if animal activism is not limited to the hands of liberals and leftists, the plight of so many animals suffering needlessly will be taken seriously by more people.

       "If reason and morality are what set humans apart from animals, then reason and  morality must always guide us in how we treat them."

          The result is a prose and plea written from the heart and stemming from the same conditions prompting anyone else, liberal or conservative, to write a book on behalf of animals: a desire to make animal lives better.

        "For me it was a simple moral step of extending that vision [appreciation of all animals because of love for a dog] out into the world, for what are dogs but affable emissaries from the animal kingdom?...What gifts they all are if our hearts are inclined in the right way and our vision to the right angle—seeing animals as they are apart from our designs upon them… Go into the largest livestockoperation, search out the darkest and tiniest stall or pen, single out the filthiest, most forlorn little lamb or pig or calf, and that is one of God’s creatures you’re looking at, morally indistinguishable from your beloved Fluffy or Frisky."

          Scully may be faulted by many who believe animals are our equal for his and the theistic contention that humans have dominion over animals, but this is his call for mercy. For those of us who see animals as not only equal, but often surpassing us in emotional intelligence, we cannot deny that animals still have no voice in our government, hence no say to stop current atrocities. And as Scully points out:

       "Animal advocates sometimes speak a language of liberation bearing little resemblance to the world that animals actually inhabit, or to our own world for that matter… Much as I admire anyone who bothers to take the matter seriously, some theorists, at least in their more abstract arguments, miss a crucial point by assuming that to be cared for a creature must somehow be made our equal, which isn’t even true in our human affairs, where often those we love most are the weak and vulnerable."

       Scully has remarkable grasp of the issues and looks in depth at many major industries including factory farming, whaling, big game hunting, the fur industry, zoos and animals used for experimentation in laboratories. There are passages such as one about a mother elephant and her calf that are so powerful, so moving I can’t even now recall them without feeling tears well in my eyes, a lump in my throat and strong indignation rising. But Matthew Scully opposes violence, asking instead that we educate ourselves about the practices being conducted, quite legally, around us. Then there are other passages whose sheer sarcastic brilliance is surely lost on the very people to whom they are directed. There are passages so graphic and heartrending they will, if one has half a conscience, urge some form of committed action on behalf of the animals. And then there is his unshakeable logic:

            This always surprises me. If you express concern for the fur bearer in question, his or her paw all but severed by the time the trapper comes along for the forking bludgeoning, or huddled for its entire life in a tiny cage in 32-degree temperatures—why, then, you must be one of those ridiculous, killjoy fanatics. A bore. But rise in furious defense of a coat—now there’s the mark of a serious man. Likewise, express qualms about some little delicacy like foie gras—fifteen thousand tons of the stuff eaten every year in France alone, all of it obtained by forcing a metal pipe down the ducks’ throats and pumping in pounds of food until their livers are grotesquely enlarged—and that makes you petty and trifling and sentimental, and why don’t you have your mind on bigger things? But reach for the knife and crackers, never mind the damned duck, and then you’re thinking straight. Now, you’ve got your priorities in order."

       "Nobody likes being preached to, especially about meals and clothing. I sure don’t, and most of us who worry about animal welfare have learned to let the point go. But spare us the haughty airs. If moral seriousness is the standard, I for one would rather be standing between duck and knife than going to the mat in angry defense of a table treat. In fact, let us just call things what they are. When a man’s love of finery clouds his moral judgment, that is vanity. When he lets a demanding palate make his moral choices, that is gluttony. When he ascribes the divine will to his own whims, that is pride. And when he gets angry at being reminded of animal suffering that his own daily choices might help avoid, that is moral cowardice."

          Read Dominion for Scully’s elegant prose and comprehensive research. For those of us working to help amend such industries as factory farming, the book is an excellent resource. Scully reminds us that instead of worrying about cruelty, we serve best if we begin by doing something about it. This can be as seemingly insignificant as speaking honestly our beliefs that animals are sentient beings, or perhaps deciding not to eat meat. Aside from that you can buy copies of Dominion and hand them out to all who’ll accept.

 

Great quotations by great people

The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals
are treated.
 —Mohandas Gandhi

We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals. —Immanuel Kant

Atrocities are not less atrocities when they occur in laboratories and are called
medical research.
 —George Bernard Shaw

If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men. —St. Francis of Assisi

The soul is the same in all living creatures, although the body of each is different. —Hippocrates

Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages. —Thomas Edison

The least I can do is speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves. --Jane Goodall

I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of a whole human being. —Abraham Lincoln

The reasons for legal intervention in favor of children apply not less strongly to the case of those
unfortunate slaves---the animals.
 —John Stuart Mill

The fate of animals is of greater importance to me than the fear of appearing ridiculous; it is indissolubly connected with the fate of men. -Emile Zola

To reassure one’s conscience, it is said that fish do not feel pain. Of course, such claims are completely without foundation. —Jacques Cousteau

For the fate of the sons of men and the fate of beasts is the same: as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts;... All go to one place; all are from the dust, and all turn to dust again. Who knows whether the spirit of man goes upward and the spirit of the beast goes down to the earth? —Ecclesiastes 3: 19-21

Until he extends his circle of compassion to all living things, man will not himself find peace. —Dr. Albert Schweitzer

The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men. —Leonardo da Vinci

Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened. —Anatole France

I have no doubt that it is part of the destiny of the human race, in its gradual improvement, to leave off eating animals. —Henry David Thoreau

Compassion, in which all ethics must take root, can only attain its full breadth and depth if it embraces all living creatures and does not limit itself to mankind. —Dr. Albert Schweitzer

The love for all living creatures is the most noble attribute of man. —Charles Darwin

Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet. —Albert Einstein

Dogs are our link to paradise. They don’t know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring. It was peace. —Milan Kundera

All knowledge, the totality of all questions and answers is contained in the dog. —Milan Kundera

May all that have life be delivered from suffering. —Buddha

The love for all living creatures is the most noble attribute of man. —Charles Dickens

No act of kindness, no matter how small is ever wasted. —Aesop

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtfully committed citizens can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has.—Margaret Mead

Man is not the lord of all the world's animals. He is the protector. —John Forsythe

Shall we make a new rule of life tonight. Always try to be a little kinder than necessary. —Sir James M. Barrie

There are hundreds of paths to scientific knowledge. The cruel ones teach us only what we ought not know. —George Bernard Shaw

Vivisection is a social evil because if it advances human knowledge, it does so at the expense of human character. —George Bernard Shaw

What I think about vivisection is that if people admit they have the right to take or endanger the life of living beings for the benefit of many, there will be no limit to their cruelty. —Leo Tolstoy

How smart does a chimp have to be before killing him constitutes murder? –Carl Sagan

Lots of people talk to animals...Not very many listen, though...That's the problem. —Benjamin Hoff

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about thing that matter. –Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

It’s a matter of taking the side of the weak against the strong, something the best people have always done. –Harriet Beecher Stowe

The question is not, “Can they reason?” nor, “Can they talk?” but rather, “Can they suffer?” –Jeremy Bentham

Until we have the courage to recognize cruelty for what it is—whether its victim is human or animal—we cannot expect things to be much better in this world. –Rachel Carson

If a man aspires towards a righteous life, his first act of abstinence is from injury to animals. –Albert Einstein

We cannot glimpse the essential life of a caged animal, only the shadow of its former beauty. –Julia Allen Field

The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That’s the essence of inhumanity. –George Bernard Shaw

All the arguments to prove man’s superiority cannot shatter this hard fact: in suffering the animals are our equals. –Peter Singer

Life is life—whether in a cat, or dog, or man. There is no difference there between a cat ora man. The idea of difference is a human conception for man’s own advantage. –Sri Aurobindo

We call them dumb animals, and so they are, for they cannot tell us how they feel, but they do not suffer less because they have no words. –Anna Sewell

Factory Farming:

If these images bother you, please help. Don’t turn a blind eye and pretend it doesn’t happen. It does. It happens to more than 9 billion animals each year. But there are simple steps we can take to help change their lives. If you choose to eat meat, buy it from a local farm. Don't buy “grocery store” meats and support these giant factories that call themselves farms. Refuse to buy cosmetics and shampoos that are tested on animals. Change begins on the individual level. We can change the world for the better. We can help the animals who have no voice in our human world. Please, you make a difference. Let’s start today.

This

can become this:

And this

can become this:

Please help. Educate others to what really goes on behind closed doors:

And let's be the change we wish to see:

Puppy Mills

Two great organizations:

Mill Dog Rescue: www.milldogrescue.org

Prisoners of Greed: www.prisonersofgreed.org

One thing you can do (from Prisonersofgreed.org):

Very Important Educational Effort

Let's Make Sure That Anyone Who Searches the Internet for Puppies gets this website to educate them about the commercial kennels.

To accomplish this goal we need every person - thousands and thousands of people to put the word "Puppies" on their website and link that word to http://www.prisonersofgreed.org. And do the exact same thing for the words "Dog" "Pet Store" "Petstore" and "Lancaster County" If many websites link to this one on those specific words, the search engines will send the traffic to the first page of this website and people looking to buy a puppy will learn about the risk of buying a dog in a pet store. The first thing that they will see are all the photos of kennels on the first page.

Please take this simple step to help the dogs who are suffering in the puppymills.

Puppies: www.prisonersofgreed.org, Dogs: www.prisonersofgreed.org, Pet Store: www.prisonersofgreed.org.

www.nomoretearsrescue.com: No More Tears Rescue's main goal is to save puppy mill dogs who can no longer breed for profit.

www.madonnaofthemills.com