Disclaimer: Before you start to feed your companion animal a home-prepared diet, API strongly recommends that you discuss your decision with your veterinarian or a holistic veterinarian in your area. (For a list of holistic veterinary practitioners, contact the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association at 410-569-0795, or check the directories at www.altvetmed.org).
Everyone will remember the clever way the “good guys” in those old-time Western movies scrambled from shrub to tree to boulder, shooting from all angles to make their enemies think they were up against a legion. That same idea has worked wonders for a handful of determined animal protection activists steadily working toward a ban on wildlife snaring in Maine.
When Miami airport inspectors asked a man arriving from Havana, Cuba to raise his pants legs, they were surprised to find 44 birds strapped to his legs. The man had denied he was bringing any wildlife into the United States. He was released the next day on $50,000 bond after being charged with lying on a customs declaration form.
Around the early 1950s, the “arctic fox” strain of rabies entered Ontario from the north. The province’s abundant populations of red foxes and striped skunks are particularly vulnerable to that strain of rabies, and Ontario soon had the dubious distinction of being the “rabies capital of North America.” As I spent so much time “in the bush” and handled wild animals from childhood as I aided my mother with her work in wildlife rescue and rehabilitation, I was familiar with rabies and took vaccinations hoped to protect me in event of contact with rabies.
For two weeks last November, the fate of millions of living creatures hung in the balance.
During that period, the 12th Conference of the Parties (COP 12) to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES) met in Chile to debate the most pressing trade issues affecting animals and plants.
In the Bible, the book of Leviticus describes a horrific custom that involved sacrificing two goats to atone for the sins of the community. On the appointed day, one of the animals was slaughtered in the temple; the other, bedecked with a red ribbon to symbolize the people’s wrongs, was abandoned in the desert to die. British artist William Holman Hunt’s famous 1854 painting, “Scapegoat,” shows a dying goat, wearing the pretty ribbon, staggering beneath a blazing desert sun while surrounded by inhospitable salt pans and the bones and carcasses of other animals.
I first realized something was wrong when I noticed my dog Murphy having trouble getting up from his bed. He seemed to hurt every time he moved. The next time 1 went to the store, I spotted "Healthy Joint Formula" dog food, whose label claimed that "glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and hyaluronic acid" help rebuild joints. Wanting to do what was best for my pal, I considered purchasing a bag. Luckily, I consulted Murphy's veterinarian first, and it was through that conversation that I started to learn about the complexities of pet food labeling.
Imagine you’ve been chained to a tree in a backyard for months, without food or water or any hope of rescue. Imagine you’re at half your ideal body weight, the victim of devastating malnutrition, anemia, calcium deficiency, and stress fractures. Imagine you’ve been beaten with a stick so viciously that you bleed. All for the amusement and profit of others.