Target: Craig Alexander Newmark, Founder of Craigslist
Goal: Demand Craigslist and other online domains be more vigilant about the sale of puppy mill dogs on their sites.
Puppy mills are particularly cruel operations. At these breeding facilities, dogs are kept in overcrowded, unsanitary conditions, forced to live in tiny cages that are rarely—if ever—cleaned. Due to the close confines and lack of veterinary care access, dogs at these mills often fall sick and premature death is relatively common. Puppies are removed from their mothers shortly after birth, so that their mothers can move onto producing yet another litter. These dogs are often not even let out of their cages to exercise or interact with humans, leaving them unsocialized and anxious. Puppy mills largely neglect the needs of mother dogs and puppies, as the sole goal of their operation is to produce as many dogs as possible to sell for as much money as possible.
While many states have begun banning the sale of dogs in pet stores—as most of these dogs are supplied by abusive puppy mill operations—puppy mill owners have found creative ways around in person sales. Owners have grown increasingly reliant on online forums, such as Craigslist and Ebay, where they deceive customers with pictures of happy and healthy puppies in fields with bows—shielding the public from the harsh reality of their business.
While Craigslist has formally banned the sale of live animals on its website, backyard breeders and mill operators are still easily able to sell their animals on the site under false pretenses. Sign this petition to demand Craigslist pay more close attention to the sale of live animals on its site and forbid any further posts advertising available puppies.
Dear Mr. Newmark,
While Craigslist formally prohibits the sale of live animals, many illegal or unethical breeders have found ways around this ban and continue to sell their animals on your online platform. Craigslist has become a hotspot for puppy mill operators to advertise their dogs under the guise of being a reputable breeder. Though they advertise healthy looking puppies in spacious fields with bows in their fur, these images couldn’t be farther from the truth. Dogs at puppy mills suffer extreme abuse, as they are viewed only as vessels to breed and sell for profit rather than as animals with individual needs.
We are asking you, Mr. Newmark, to be more vigilant about the sale of puppy mill dogs on your site and to prevent Craigslist from being involved in illegal and unethical puppy trafficking operations.
Target: Alan Wilson, Attorney General of South Carolina
Goal: Demand the alleged operators of the largest known dogfighting operation in South Carolina history be prosecuted and punished to the full extent of the law.
Recently, over 300 dogs were rescued from what officials consider the largest dogfighting ring in South Carolina history. Over 60 state and federal officers reportedly interrupted a scheduled dogfighting match in Richmond County, in addition to executing search warrants at nearby properties rumored to contain dogfighting associations. Officers were stunned by the cruelty they seemingly witnessed at these locations. Dogfighting paraphernalia was reportedly scattered about, and emaciated puppies with their rib cages showing were apparently found chained to trees and shoved in filthy cages.
So far, more than 20 individuals have been arrested for charges relating to animal cruelty. According to the Animal Welfare Act, individuals can face up to five years in prison for dogfighting charges. While the dogs are currently being taken care of by the Humane Society of the United States and Bark Nation, the sad reality is that many of these dogs will likely have to be euthanized, since their sole life purpose up until this point had seemingly been to fight and they are too aggressive to be placed into loving homes.
Sign this petition to demand all found guilty of involvement are punished at the fullest extent of the law. Dogfighting has no home here in the United States, or anywhere else.
Dear Attorney General Wilson,
It has been brought to public attention that over 300 dogs were reportedly rescued from an undercover dogfighting ring in South Carolina thought to have been the largest such operation in the states’ history. Officials on site at the 20+ search warrant properties were stunned by the apparent cruelty they witnessed, and images taken depict starved puppies with their rib cages showing chained to trees by heavy metal links, with others shoved in filthy, barren cages. Unfortunately, although the dogs are in the custody of the Humane Society of the United States and Bark Nation, most of these dogs–who reportedly spent their entire lives being trained to fight and kill–will most likely have to be euthanized.
Dogfighting is a terrible crime, and we are asking you, Mr. Wilson, that all individuals found guilty of involvement be punished at the fullest extent of the law.
Goal: Help victims of domestic violence by protecting their pets.
An estimated 71% of women at domestic violence shelters report that their abusers also targeted their pets, according to Representative Angela Romero of Salt Lake City. Abusers also often exploit their victims’ emotional attachment to pets as a tactic of manipulation, and about 25% of domestic violence survivors say they return to their abusers because they are worried about the safety of their pets.
A bill that would provide vital protections for pets against instances of domestic abuse has passed the Utah House. If this bill passes the Senate, Utah will follow thirty-five other states which already have similar protections in place. Not only would this bill save animals from suffering, it would also provide psychological support to survivors of domestic abuse and stalking.
Sign this petition to demand the state of Utah stand up for their survivors and pass this protective legislation.
Dear President Stuart Adams,
A bill has recently passed the Utah House which would instate vital protections for pets targeted by acts of domestic abuse. In addition to helping to reduce animal suffering, this bill would also help survivors of domestic violence feel like they can escape their situations. About a quarter of domestic violence survivors say they return to their abusers because they are worried about the safety of their pets. With this bill, survivors can be assured that their pets will be taken care of.
We are asking you, Mr. Adams, to join thirty-five other states in prioritizing the physical and psychological welfare of animals and victims over domestic abusers. Pass this bill in the Utah Senate.
Target: Joseph R. Biden, President of the United States
Goal: Demand increased funding for local animal shelters in the wake of overcrowding.
Animal shelters across the United States are in trouble. In the midst of illegal or irresponsible breeding, the eviction crisis, and rising rates of inflation, dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens are being brought into shelters at alarmingly rapid paces. These shelters are extremely overwhelmed and understaffed, with more animals coming in than they have the resources to care for.
As a result, shelters are having to make difficult decisions. Animals are being turned down, forcing owners to choose either to continue to try and care for the pet themselves or abandon it somewhere outside. Many shelters that have long operated on no-kill policies have been forced to move towards euthanasia, as they simply do not have the means by which to support such high quantities of animals. As a lot of the surrendered dogs and cats were family pets, they are highly adoptable and would make great additions to any home if only given adequate time to find one.
These shelters need our help, and fast. Sign this petition to demand increased funding for animal shelters across the U.S. and to help them in their amazing efforts to save the nation’s dogs and cats.
Dear President Biden,
Animal shelters throughout the U.S. are in the midst of a crisis. Economic hardships brought about by the pandemic, irresponsible pet ownership, illegal breeding, and the rising costs of living have all contributed to the mass influx of pets surrendered to local shelters. Most of the shelters do not have the resources to care for all these dogs and cats on their own–they are significantly understaffed, overworked, and running out of money. Many shelters that had run on no-kill policies have had to turn towards euthanasia, as they simply cannot afford to care for all of the animals in their possession.
We are asking you, Mr. Biden, to help save dogs and cats during these trying times and increase funding to local animal shelters. These animals deserve a loving home.
Target: Thomas J. Vilsack, United States Secretary of Agriculture
Goal: Mandate psychological treatment for kids who commit acts of animal cruelty to protect other animals and people.
It was over a year ago that Buddy the dog was found near death, with an extension cord tied around his neck, covered in burn marks from having been set on fire. The alleged perpetrator of this heinous crime: a 12-year-old Mississippi child. While this would typically be considered a felony punishable by up to three years in prison, children under 12 cannot be charged with a crime or evaluated according to Mississippi state law.
In the wake of much public outrage, officials created Buddy’s, law which went into effect on July 1st of 2022. According to Buddy’s law, any child convicted of torturing animals is required to receive psychiatric evaluation and treatment. Not only will this law protect thousands of animals from abuse, it will also possibly save the lives of many people, as there is a relatively well established link between animal abuse and later acts of violence towards humans.
Sign this petition to demand Buddy’s law be passed on a federal level and hold abusers in all states across the U.S. accountable for their crimes.
Dear Secretary Vilsack,
Buddy’s law was recently passed in Mississippi after Buddy, a family dog, was found with an extension cord tied tightly around his neck and covered in burn marks. This terrible crime was allegedly committed by a child who, under the age of 12, couldn’t be charged with a crime or evaluated by the state.
Buddy’s law changes this. According to the law, any child convicted of torturing animals is required to receive psychiatric evaluation and treatment. Not only will this get children the help they need, it will also likely save animals and even other people. The correlation between early childhood acts of animal abuse and later acts of violence towards humans is relatively well-established, and perpetrators of crimes towards animals are typically capable of much more.
We are asking you, Mr. Vilsack, to encourage Buddy’s law to be passed on a federal level as an amendment to the Animal Welfare Act.
We know about the 2.5 million human residents of Florida who have be ordered to evacuate in preparation for Hurricane Ian. But what about all the animals in the many zoos and wildlife sanctuaries? In Florida, all licensed captive wildlife owners must have individualized storm preparation plans outlined in their required Critical Incident Plan. Zookeepers and animal conservationists have been working hard in recent days to ensure their animal residents remain safe as the major hurricane threatens the region.
More specifically, for the past several days, the veterinary team at the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens in Sanford has been making sure that zookeepers have all of the adequate medications for animals. And the nutrition team has been planning to make sure that the zoo has plenty of food to get the animals past the next several days and into next week.
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