Safe from the storm

“Two Elephants Freed From Concrete Pit After 20 Years”

“Rescues Only Had 30 Minutes To Save This Deer”

“Tigers Freed From Abandoned Train Car After 15 Years”

Very Happy Pups

Deaf dog was rescued after falling down a 100-foot cliff

Hobo, an 8-year-old Australian Shepherd, was rescued after the San Diego Humane Society said he slipped into a ravine near his family’s property in Sorrento Valley, falling down a 100-foot steep hill.

Heather Brinkmann

Video released by the San Diego Humane Society shows the organization’s emergency response crew saving an 8-year-old Australian shepherd after the dog fell 100 feet down a steep hill in Sorrento Valley, California. (Credit: San Diego Humane Society / MAGNIFI U /TMX)

SAN DIEGO – Thanks to the quick actions of emergency crews in Southern California, a deaf dog is safe after a terrifying fall down a 100-foot hill.

Hobo, an 8-year-old Australian Shepherd, was rescued after the San Diego Humane Society said he slipped into a ravine near his family’s property in Sorrento Valley, falling down a steep hill.


“One of our Humane Officers responded to the scene first, climbing down loose rock to reach the dog,” the humane society said.

But officers realized the hike back up was too dangerous, so they needed to call for backup.

The San Diego Humane set up safety lines to rappel down the steep terrain and worked to bring him back up the hill. 

(San Diego Humane Society)

“Members of the ERT Technical Response Unit rushed to the scene, setting up safety lines to rappel down the steep terrain,” they said.


It took five people to free Hobo from the brush before they could secure him.

After a grueling four hours, crews said they were able to make it safely back up the hill, and Hobo was reunited with his family.

SIGN: Justice for Elephants Beaten and Starved at Thai Tourist Attraction

(Photo Credit: Chayanan Assawadhammanond / Facebook)

PETITION TARGETS: Thailand’s Department of Livestock Development; Thai Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation; Ministry of Tourism and Sports in the Department of Tourism

Intelligent elephants are being starved, chained, and hit with metal spikes and vicious hooks so they will give rides and perform tricks for tourists at the Samutprakarn Crocodile Farm and Zoo in Thailand, according to news reports.

Concerned visitors to the zoo reportedly offered to donate food but were refused entrance. They then posted photos of injured and seemingly malnourished elephants on social media and alerted wildlife and livestock officials, whose investigation found the zoo was in violation of the Cruelty Prevention and Animal Welfare Act, according to Coconuts Bangkok.

But shockingly, local authorities reportedly have decided not to pursue penalties or cruelty charges — instead telling the zoo to feed the elephants more grass and loosen the animals’ chains to reduce stress and injury, according to news reports.

The zoo has previously made the news for grossly underweight elephants being forced to perform tricks and also for handlers who reportedly stabbed elephants with spikes to force them to entertain tourists, kept animals chained in crowded and unsanitary conditions, and forced tigers, chimpanzees, and an orangutan to pose with tourists for the zoo’s profit.

Wild animals do not deserve to endure such extreme suffering and degradation for people’s “entertainment.”

Thailand must enforce its animal cruelty statutes, and these atrocious acts also must be treated with the severity they deserve.

Sign our petition urging Thailand authorities who oversee elephant welfare to thoroughly investigate conditions at this zoo, crack down with maximum penalties for violations, and retire these suffering animals to a reputable sanctuary where they will no longer be abused or exploited.

Sign Petition: It’s Illegal to Rescue a Dog From a Hot Car in These Two States!

  • by: Care2 Team
  • recipient: New Jersey and West Virginia Lawmakers

Summer is upon us, and we’re experiencing heat that, if you aren’t careful, could be deadly. And not just to humans. Some pet owners don’t realize how dangerous it is to leave your pet in a hot car, especially when it’s not even that hot out. Did you know that if it is 75 degrees outside, the inside of a car can heat up to 94 degrees in just 10 minutes? Thankfully, some states have protections for good samaritans who rescue dogs from hot cars. But in New Jersey and West Virginia, if someone tries to save a dog locked in a hot car, they could get into hot water. In these two states, although it is a crime to leave animals in hot cars, no one is allowed to rescue them. 

Sign the petition to urge New Jersey and West Virginia lawmakers to adopt good samaritan laws that make it legal to save animals in hot cars!

Dogs are totally at our mercy, unable to make the choice to get out of a car when it starts to become an inferno. Not only that, they’re actually more sensitive to heat! When the weather is hot, leaving a car window cracked doesn’t do much to help an animal trapped inside, according to Katherine Wood, a criminal justice fellow at the Animal Legal Defense Fund. “It’s problematic for dogs because, unlike us, they can’t sweat, for the most part. They’re a lot more susceptible to overheating, and they can go into heat strokes very quickly.”

There are 14 states with laws that allow citizens to rescue animals from hot cars. While rescuers in these states must satisfy certain requirements to avoid legal trouble, at least it is possible to save an overheating pup! How many more animals must die horrible deaths while trapped in a car, and how many more will die because it is illegal to rescue them?

Sign the petition to urge New Jersey and West Virginia lawmakers to adopt good samaritan laws that make it legal to save animals in hot cars!

Four Dolphins That Became Stranded In Provincetown, Massachusetts, Were Released Back Into The Wild – World Animal News

August 18, 2022

ByKaren Lapizco

Photos from IFAW

Four dolphins were released back into the wild last week in Provincetown, MA, following 24-hours of tracking along the coast and eventual stranding in Wellfleet Harbor. They were rescued in a highly coordinated response effort and released back to deeper waters, thanks to expert staff and volunteers with IFAW (the International Fund for Animal Welfare).

IFAW received the first report of several animals close to shore off Provincetown last Wednesday afternoon. One dolphin stranded but was unfortunately pushed off by bystanders. Further human interference on land and by boat led to increased stress for the animals before responders could arrive. The team spotted the dolphins swimming farther offshore in Truro later the same day, but the tide was incoming and IFAW staff and volunteers monitored them from a distance until sunset.

“By morning light on Thursday, volunteer responders identified four common dolphins swimming near the Wellfleet Pier, and we knew something had to be done,” said Brian Sharp, IFAW’s Director of Marine Mammal Rescue & Research. “We were concerned by the animals’ behavior, the dropping tide, and given our previous experience with summer boat traffic and heat. In consultation with NOAA, we made the decision to herd the dolphins closer to shore for the best chance of a successful rescue.”

The dolphins were carefully coaxed toward shallow water and away from a dangerous stranding area known as Chipman’s Cove so that they could be stretchered. An expert-only endeavor, herding of the dolphins took place quickly and with minimal stress to the animals. This resulted in a successful rescue, calling on the skilled maneuvers of IFAW’s boat, a Wellfleet Harbormaster vessel, and additional staff in kayaks.

All four dolphins were transported to a deeper water release site off Provincetown, traveling in IFAW’s mobile dolphin rescue clinic. This one-of-a-kind vehicle was custom designed to meet the needs of what is considered a global stranding hotspot on Cape Cod. The vehicle enables IFAW veterinarians and experts to perform health assessments and stabilize the dolphins while quickly reaching the best site for release.

Thankfully, the dolphins were successfully released as a pod and swam off closely together.


“Explorers in 22-mile cave accidentally find dog”

‘Horrified’: Council members react to animal shelter crisis – Los Angeles Times

Dakota Smith

Two L.A. city councilmen called Friday for more resources for the city’s struggling animal shelters following a Times article about crowded kennels, shelter dogs that go for weeks without walks and staffing shortages.

“Angelenos deserve the services we pay for,” said City Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson, whose South L.A. district includes Chesterfield Square Animal Services Center. “We expect animals to be treated humanely and require the city to do better.”

Chesterfield Square is the most crowded of the city’s six animal shelters and houses some 300 dogs, some of whom face long confinement periods. The city relies on hundreds of unpaid volunteers to walk and exercise the dogs, but volunteers say that they can’t keep up with the influx of animals.

At the same time, staffing shortages are hurting the department. Animal Services lost more than 20% of its workforce through a program that encouraged older city employees to retire. It was launched in the first year of the pandemic in 2020 when it wasn’t clear that federal funding would be available.

Today, staff at Animal Services are frequently absent because of COVID-19-related issues, staff and volunteers told The Times.

Councilman Bob Blumenfield, who represents the west San Fernando Valley, said he was “horrified” to read about conditions at the shelters. “My heart breaks for the animals,” said Blumenfield, who said his family has both fostered and adopted shelter dogs.

Blumenfield questioned why more “red flags” weren’t raised about the shelter’s challenges.

Yet, members of the public regularly call into meetings of the Los Angeles Animal Services Commission, which is made up of Mayor Eric Garcetti’s appointees, to complain about conditions at the shelters, including the dogs’ long confinement.

And in May, an employee at the city’s San Pedro shelter emailed supervisors to alert them to overcrowding issues, including dogs that were being housed in shower stalls and in wildlife cages.

“We should be able to deal with this as a city,” Blumenfield said. “We have the resources and we have the know-how.”

He said the city shouldn’t be in a position where its dogs “are kept in shower stalls and not having walks.”

Blumenfield, who was critical at the time of the city’s retirement program because he feared a big loss in staff, also said the department needs more employees and better technology make it easier for the public to volunteer and adopt animals.

Animal Services’ interim general manager Annette Ramirez said in an interview last month that a new website will launch soon.

Harris-Dawson also said the neighborhood around the shelter “is filled with folks who love pets and are willing to give their time to turn the situation around. If Animal Services engages with the local community, they will show up.”

KTLA reported Thursday that Claudio Kusnier, a volunteer at the West Valley shelter, was suspended after he talked to the news outlet about conditions at the shelter.

Kusnier told KTLA that the shelters need to stay open past 5 p.m. so more people can volunteer. At one point — Kusnier was also interviewed after the suspension — he blamed department “mismanagement” for the loss of two key staff members who recently left. Both of those staffers are now working at other animal services agencies.

Jean Sarfaty, a former 911 city operator who volunteers at the West Valley shelter, told The Times that she was also suspended after talking to the media on Thursday. She said she was told she was suspended because she gave an interview without permission. She was wearing an Animal Services t-shirt at the time, too.

“I didn’t say anything negative,” Sarfaty said. “I said that the city employees work hard and that volunteers help to do the things that the city workers aren’t doing because they don’t have time.” The Times was not immediately able to get a comment from Animal Services about Sarfaty’s account.

Agnes Sibal, a spokesperson for Los Angeles Animal Services, said the department doesn’t comment on “staffing-related or personnel issues.”

Speaking generally about volunteer interviews, Sibal said volunteers need department approval prior to speaking to the media “when they are going to speak and represent the department [as a volunteer] to the media.”

Sibal also appeared on CBS2 this week and said that the dogs receive care, although some may not be walked for weeks.

“All the dogs in our shelters actually get daily enrichments,” Sibal told the news station. “That doesn’t necessarily mean that they get walked every day. However, they do get some form of exercise and interaction with volunteers or staff.”

Asked what exercise the dogs get every day, Sibal told The Times the animals get enrichment activities.

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“Dogs receive exercise through canine enrichment by engaging them in activities designed to stimulate their mind while also keeping them active,” Sibal said.

“Enrichment activities happen daily and vary day by day and may be outdoors via playtime in the yards or walks, or in their kennels, when they get their daily treats from staff/volunteers; receive Kong toys with treats inside; or when they enjoy frozen treats during hot weather,” Sibal said.

Other activities include blowing bubbles for dogs to pop and chase and reading to the animals, Sibal said.

She also said that city staff’s enrichment activities may not be reflected in any logs.

Former Animal Services supervisor Thomas Kalinowski, one of the staff who recently left the department, said that he personally interacted with dogs that hadn’t been out of their kennels in weeks or months.

Mike Long, communications director for SEIU 721, which represents some Animal Services workers, said Friday that “more animals will continue to suffer” if the city doesn’t act.

“We have to face facts — we need more dollars for staff and facilities because clearly, relying on the good will of volunteers and on private, one-time donations from pet-loving celebrities alone just isn’t enough,” Long said.

City Councilman Paul Koretz, who chairs a committee overseeing animal issues, has scheduled an emergency committee meeting next week to discuss conditions at the shelters.

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Petition · Help free Shankar from decades of solitary confinement in the Delhi Zoo ·

Nikita Nandika – YFA started this petition to Director, National Zoological Park (NZP) Shri Dharam Deo Rai and

Petition in other languages: Hindi , Italian, French

Who is Shankar?

In 1998, a 26 month-old male African elephant was presented as a diplomatic gift by Zimbabwe to India. He was named ‘Shankar’ after India’s 9th President Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma. Shankar, now over 26 years old, has lived his entire life in the Delhi zoo (National Zoological Park, NZP). Since 2001 when his sole companion Vambai passed away, Shankar has lived in solitary confinement. 

Shankar’s Physical and Mental Condition

Shankar is chained for 17 hours of the day and does not have adequate space to move around when he is let out. Much like humans, elephants are social beings and suffer neurological distress when put in solitary confinement. Shankar constantly demonstrates stereotypical behaviour like swaying and head-bobbing, a key sign of distress (see video link). In fact, Shankar’s aggressive behaviour has necessitated the zoo authorities to permanently close the viewing pathway since he could be a danger to visitors. In a response to our RTI in July 2021, the Delhi Zoo confirmed that not only has it made NO effort in the past, it has NO FUTURE PLANS to release Shankar to a sanctuary or any other location where he can have the companionship of other African elephants. This just fills us with sadness and despair for Shankar who is clearly in duress. If Shankar’s solitary captivity does not end immediately, he will meet the same fate as Vambai who died in the zoo.

Our Demand

We need the Delhi Zoo (NZP) to transfer Shankar to be released to a wildlife refuge or sanctuary where there are ample African elephants. The NZP director  has a unique opportunity to set an example to every other zoo in India and to the world so that not only Shankar but all other captive elephants can have a better future.

Steps undertaken by YFA

  1. Letter sent to Delhi Zoo on October 4, 2021. Read here
  2. Letter sent to Prime Minister’s Office on November 16, 2021. Read here
  3. Having received no response, we filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Delhi High Court that was heard on January 3, 2022. The Hon’ble High Court admitted our case and also directed the Respondents to consider our representation. The next court hearing is scheduled for July 6, 2022.

We really hope you will join hands with us to help Shankar earn his freedom and have a chance to live a normal elephant life with his own kind. Please sign our petition and share it widely.

Thanks and regards

Nikita Dhawan and Nandika Karunakaram

(On Behalf of Youth For Animals)


Reach us via-

Website II Email 

Follow us on social media to help amplify our voice

Twitter II Facebook II Instagram II Linkedin II YouTube

Hashtags for our campaign

Main- #FreeShankarDelhiZoo

Others- #FreeShankar #ShankarforSanctuary #Shankar #HaathiMereSaathi

Sign this petition


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Award-winning photographer launches stunning portraits of ‘survivors’ of South Korea’s dog meat trade, now living their best lives – Humane Society International

Wilf, dog meat trade survivor

Sophie Gamand

As the South Korean government ponders a possible ban on the country’s dog meat industry, the remarkable resilience of some of the lucky canine survivors of that trade who now live in adoptive families in the United States, feature in a stunning new portrait series by award-winning photographer, Sophie Gamand. Gamand’s Survivors of the Dog Meat Trade portraits appear for a limited showing at the Hamilton-Selway Fine Art gallery in West Hollywood. The portraits feature a handful of the more than 2,500 dogs rescued by Humane Society International from South Korean dog meat farms.

Sophie Gamand is famous for her Pit Bull Flower Power Project that single-handedly transformed the image of much maligned pit bulls languishing in shelters across the U.S. When Humane Society International asked her to apply that same magic to help lift the fortunes of  dogs who are intensively bred on factory farms for human consumption in South Korea, she jumped at the chance to once again use photography to change lives. This time the beneficiaries are the more than one million dogs who HSI estimates are on dog meat farms in South Korea.

Gamand says: “Through this series I want people to see these dogs for the strong and beautiful beings that they are. I created handmade collars for these survivors because dog collars are a powerful symbol of love, commitment and care. Joining Humane Society International on one of its dog meat farm rescue missions opened my eyes to both the disturbing conditions in which these dogs live, and the resilience they constantly show.”

Humane Society International has been on the ground in South Korea since 2015, working in partnership with farmers eager to exit the controversial and dying business. Dogs are typically bred in row upon row of barren cages on dilapidated farms, bitterly cold in winter and stiflingly hot in Korea’s punishing summer. Dogs are denied proper food and water and often have only harsh metal wire mesh floor to sleep on, causing painful pressure sores. Like most people across Asia, the vast majority of South Koreans don’t eat dog meat, and many of the farmers with whom HSI works talk of family and societal pressure to get out of what is increasingly seen by Koreans as an unacceptable livelihood. HSI’s Models for Change program helps these farmers transition to more humane and sustainable livelihoods such as chili or water parsley growing.

The canine stars of Gamand’s portraits include Luna and Moon, who both now live in the Washington D.C. area and Ruby, who now resides in Las Vegas. Each dog is adorned with an intricate and glamorous collar created personally by Gamand to help rebrand these dogs, who are too often wrongly presented as soulless and vicious by the industry that exploits them, within South Korea.

One of the dogs featured is Birdie, a Jindo/Labrador mix who was rescued by HSI in 2018 and adopted by Olympic skier Gus Kenworthy. Another is Juliette, rescued by HSI in 2020 and subsequently adopted by The Wheel of Time actor Daniel Henney.

Henney says: “I’m immensely proud that my dog Juliette is one of the dog meat trade survivors featured in Sophie Gamand’s portrait project for Humane Society International. I hope to see an end, a complete end, to the dog meat trade in South Korea. I think it’s not a matter of if, but when it will happen.”

Golden retriever Chewbacca is also among the portraits, who now lives in Virginia with adopter and Humane Society International president Jeffrey Flocken, who says: “HSI’s campaign is focused on ending the dog meat industry in South Korea, the only country in the world that intensively farms dogs for consumption, and we’re making incredible progress. The real goal is to get a ban passed that will end this industry forever so that no more dogs have to suffer. And, on a personal note, this campaign means a lot to me because it brought me and my family Chewbacca, who was rescued from HSI’s fifteenth dog meat farm closure, and is now a beloved member of our family.”

A dog meat ban is currently being considered by an official task force initiated last year by the South Korean government after the then President Moon Jae-in suggested the time is right to consider a ban.

Newly elected President Yoon Seok-yeol, who has four dogs including Tori a rescued Jindo—a breed typically found on dog meat farms—confirmed his support for a ban on dog meat during the presidential election campaign, provided there is social consensus.

More information can be found at

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Media contact: Madeline Bove:; 213-248-1548

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‘We had too much to do to be scared’: the couple who fled Irpin with 19 dogs

Daniel Boffey

The image of a windswept young woman holding tight to the leads of nine dogs under an ominously dark sky spread far and wide at the time of the Battle of Kyiv.

The apparent bravery of the woman, who was attempting an audacious evacuation across a broken bridge targeted by Russian fire, and the vulnerability of the animals, some of whom were strapped into dog wheelchairs, epitomised to many the cruelty of the war being waged by Vladimir Putin and the dignity of the Ukrainian response.

The full story of the trials of Anastasiya Tykha, 20, a veterinary student in the final year of her degree, and her husband Arthur Lee, 26, is perhaps even more striking than the photograph, which the couple discovered had gone viral when Tykha saw herself on the television news and listened to the presenter report that she was dead.

Anastasiya Tykha and her dogs attempting to travel from Irpin to Kyiv under Russian fire in March.

Anastasiya Tykha and some of her dogs attempting to travel from Irpin to Kyiv under Russian fire in March. Photograph: Handout

Speaking in Irpin, the town 13 miles north of Kyiv from where the couple had fled on 9 March, Tykha said they ended up making seven crossings of the bridge in total, each one under fire.

“We had too much to do to be worried or scared”, said Tykha, who has run an animal shelter in Irpin for four years, and who on that first journey was seeking to escape with 19 dogs, five cats, a turtle, a chameleon, two Triton lizards, an axolotl and a hamster.

It was not an easy decision to flee, but the Russians had wrestled control of the town, there was no electricity or running water and the dogs were having to drink from the shelter’s aquarium.

It was Snizhana Bugryk, 35, a friend who was involved in finding abandoned and disabled animals for Tykha and Lee’s shelter, who persuaded the couple that they had no choice but to leave.

“Snizhana said we had to go or we would be killed, that this was our last chance for us and the animals to survive,” said Tykha. “And she was right”, added Lee. “Our house was later in the heart of the heavy fighting.”

It was a two-mile walk to the bridge where Ukrainian soldiers were helping people across.

Aerial view of Irpin, destroyed by Russian bombs

An aerial view of the town of Irpin, 13 miles north of Kyiv, which has suffered heavy Russian bombardment. Photograph: Google Earth

Two of the dogs – Strong and Baileys, mongrel border collies with broken spines – were in wheelchairs, while Life, a four-year-old with amputated legs, had refused to be strapped in and was dragging herself on her stumps. “I did think at one point that we would not make it,” said Lee, “but Snizhana called and said there would be a minibus on the other side to help”.

It took three hours to get to the bridge. One dog, Pandora, a one-and-a-half-year-old mongrel Belgian shepherd, was so terrified that he bit off part of his tongue, while four of the others, including the couple’s own dog, Zeus, a beagle, became so worked up by the sounds of war they chewed through their leads and ran away.

Arriving exhausted at the Ukrainian checkpoint by the bridge, the couple and their animals drew the attention of press photographers, who crowded around them.

“That was when that photo was taken – I just wanted them to let us get through to the bridge,” said Tykha. “I was worried because there were burned out cars and lots of smashed glass and metal, and I didn’t want the animals to be cut up.”

A group of Ukrainian soldiers came to their aid, ushering the photographers away. “There were explosions and shooting but after two weeks of Russian occupation, we were used to it,” Lee said.

The couple found the minivan and it took them to a south-western district of Kyiv, where a sauna on the side of a house had been made available to them and their animals to stay in.

It was the next day that the couple discovered that their adventures were being talked about across Ukraine, and that Tykha was presumed dead.

They were determined to go back to find Zeus and the other dogs who had fled in fear.

“We were in the sauna for five days, but every one of those days Anastasiya went to the Ukrainian military checkpoint and demanded that she be allowed through to get the escaped dogs,” said Lee. Every day the commander at the checkpoint refused, and every day she came back. He was finally browbeaten into submission.

Anastasiya Tikha with one of her dogs in her garden.

Anastasiya and Arthur have returned to Irpin, where they now care for 30 dogs and 10 cats. Photograph: Ed Ram/The Guardian

After crossing the bridge, again under fire, they faced a three-mile walk to a an abandoned animal shelter, where they knew there were hungry dogs who needed help.

“It was a hard walk because we had all this heavy food,” said Lee. They returned to their own home, where they found Zeus, and picked up some neighbours’ dogs, including a German shepherd, bringing their party of animals for the return to five.

They would make two further trips, and all the dogs that fled on the first escape were accounted for.

Lee said their final trip back to Irpin, on 29 March, was the scariest. “The council had said that the Russians had gone the previous day and that it was safe – but it wasn’t,” Lee said. “The bombs were landing just 2 metres from us. We hid between the minivan and a fence, but it was close.”

Now they are back in Irpin in a new, rented house. Because so many former residents have left, their collection of sheltered animals has grown to 30 dogs and 10 cats. They are, the couple say, just happy to be living the life they love.

You’ve read 9 articles in the last year

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has abruptly transformed the world. Millions of people have already fled. A new Iron Curtain is grinding into place. An economic war deepens, as the military conflict escalates, civilian casualties rise and evidence of horrific war crimes mounts.

It’s our job at the Guardian to decipher a rapidly changing landscape, particularly when it involves a mounting refugee crisis and the risk of unthinkable escalation. Our correspondents are on the ground in Ukraine and throughout the globe delivering round-the-clock reporting and analysis during this perilous situation.

We know there is no substitute for being there – and we’ll stay on the ground, as we did during the 1917 Russian Revolution, the Ukrainian famine of the 1930s, the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and the first Russo-Ukrainian conflict in 2014. We have an illustrious, 200-year history of reporting throughout Europe in times of upheaval, peace and everything in between. We won’t let up now.

Tens of millions have placed their trust in the Guardian’s fearless journalism since we started publishing 200 years ago, turning to us in moments of crisis, uncertainty, solidarity and hope. We’d like to invite you to join more than 1.5 million supporters from 180 countries who now power us financially – keeping us open to all, and fiercely independent.

Unlike many others, the Guardian has no shareholders and no billionaire owner. Just the determination and passion to deliver high-impact global reporting, always free from commercial or political influence. Reporting like this is vital to establish the facts: who is lying and who is telling the truth.

And we provide all this for free, for everyone to read. We do this because we believe in information equality. Greater numbers of people can keep track of the global events shaping our world, understand their impact on people and communities, and become inspired to take meaningful action. Millions can benefit from open access to quality, truthful news, regardless of their ability to pay for it.

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The Heart-Warming Story Of Mama, The “Graveyard Dog”


In 2015, a heart-breaking photo circulated online. It was a picture of a broken and exhausted German Shepherd sitting on top of a grave in Serbia. The internet came to the conclusion that the dog was trying to dig a hole to stay close to her late owner. However, this was far from the truth.

When the story was first reported, the public made the assumption that this animal was someone’s pet. Dogs are famous for their loyalty and they have been known as “man’s best friend” for centuries. The story was widely shared on social media sites, people were overcome with sympathy for the grieving animal.


But the real truth behind the viral photo is something no one expected. These photographs were taken in Serbia by an amazing woman named Vesna Mihajloski who is an animal activist and rescuer. She was moved by what she saw but, as…

View original post 440 more words

Petition · End Happy The Elephant’s 10 Years of Solitary Confinement ·

The Bronx Zoo has been given the shameful title of the 5th worst zoo for elephants in the country. The New York Times calls Happy the Bronx Zoo’s loneliest elephant. That’s because this highly intelligent and social being is one of the only zoo elephants in the entire United States who is being held alone. And it looks like her living conditions won’t change anytime soon unless we do something about it.

I am asking you, my fellow animal lovers, to encourage the Bronx Zoo Director James J. Breheny to release Happy to a sanctuary where she can be in a more natural setting and live the rest of her life in peace.

New standards regarding the keeping of elephants were recently passed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the accrediting organization for American wildlife institutions. Among their recommendations was that elephants be held in groups of three or more, as they are highly social creatures. Now, zoos around the country  are scrambling to comply with the regulations by AZA’s 2016 deadline. Yet, the Bronx Zoo seems steadfast in its opinion that Happy is “happy” with her solitary life. This goes against all scientific data about elephant behavior.

Happy and 6 other elephant calves were captured in the wild from Thailand and brought to the States in 1977. For 25 years, she and her companion, Grumpy, were kept as a pair in the Bronx Zoo. When Grumpy passed away, she was paired with Sammy, who sadly died in 2006. It was then that the zoo decided to end its elephant program, but it didn’t relocate the elephants it currently had.

For 10 years, Happy has been in a sort of solitary confinement, unable to truly interact with the other elephants held at the zoo. This is a social being like a monkey or a dolphin. Elephants thrive in the company of their own kind, where they form multi-generational family groups that remain loyal to one another for life, and the elders pass wisdom down to the younger ones to help them navigate their world.

Happy is likely not at all happy. She has endured a decade of loneliness and deserves the chance to be with others of her kind in a sanctuary. Please join me in telling the Bronx Zoo to release Happy to a sanctuary and let her really have a chance at happiness.

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