Animal Writes
3 January 1999 Issue

What You Can Do To Protect Your Pet

* DO keep your pet indoors especially when you are not at home.
* DO properly identify your pet with a collar tag, microchip, and/or tattoo.
* DO be aware of strangers in your neighborhood. Report anything unusual to the police.
* DO padlock your gate.
* DO keep your pet on a leash whenever you go outside.
* DO make neighbors aware of the problem of pet theft.
* DO know where your pet is at all times.
* DO NOT let your pet roam free in the neighborhood.
* DO NOT let your pet be visible from the street.
* DO NOT leave your pet unattended at any time.
* DO NOT tie your pet outside a store to wait for you.
* DO NOT use "Free to a Good Home" advertisements to place your pet in a good home.
* DO NOT give your pet away without first knowing as much as possible about the adoptive home.

Year after year, our pets are disappearing. Dogs and cats alike are taken from homes across America. The statistics are grim. Of up to two million animals stolen each year, only ten percent -- or about 200,000-- are ever returned home. What happens to the others is enough to anger any person who cares about animals.

The millions of pets who are stolen and never recovered are typically used in dog fighting, sadistic acts, or experimentation. Many of the people involved in buying and selling these animals are licensed by the U.S. federal government. Anyone can obtain a Class B license from the USDA and legally be able to sell "random source" animals to research facilities across the country. These "random source" animals come from many sources, but all too often they come right from someone's backyard. Many of these animals are sometimes obtained through "Free To Good Home" ads, preying upon unsuspecting pet owners who can no longer care for their companions.

So-called "bunchers" acquire these animals for free. By making fraudulent promises of a good home and tender care, these trusting animals are sold by the bunchers, usually the same day, to Class B dealers. Their eventual home -- research facilities, many of which are funded by tax dollars.

Animals are obtained from neighborhoods, advertisements, auction. What awaits them at a Class B facility?...dirty cages, rotten food, and eventual torture.

Common violations taken from inspections:
"Cat was dead in cage. A second cat was emaciated, dehydrated with severe nasal exudates..." Pennsylvania Class B dealer, 10-21-91

"The open burial pit contains several dog carcasses that are uncovered and in various states of decay..." Oregon Class B dealer, 4-18-98

"No additional bedding or mats in puppy shelter in below freezing weather..." Massachusetts Class B dealer, 4-6-95

Last Chance for Animals, a nonprofit organization, continues to successfully stop pet theft for profit. The precedent-setting guilty verdict of Ruggiero, Spero, and Jacobsen has made LCA the first and only organization in the country to apprehend three licensed 'B' dealers, bring them to trial, and send them to state prison. Additionally, LCA has introduced and continued to push national legislation to illegalize the sale of "random source" animals to research facilities. Selling fraudulently obtained or stolen companion animals to laboratories or other torturous facilities is an inexcusable practice that the government must stop by cracking down on 'B' dealers. For more information, call LCA toll free: 1-888-ANIMALS

Last Chance for Animals
8033 Sunset Blvd. Ste. 35
Los Angeles, CA 90046
ph: (301) 271-6096
fx: (301) 271-1890

Go on to Animal Rights Organizations To Join and Support
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