CALIFORNIANS: SPEAK UP FOR DUCKS AND BIG CATS
In California, two animal protection bills -- A.B. 1857 and S.B. 1520 -- are winding their way through the legislature and need your help to pass the final hurdles to becoming law. Both A.B. 1857 and S.B. 1520 are expected to be voted on very soon, possibly within the next week.
Assembly Bill 1857, which will ban the declawing of captive, wild cats, passed the California Assembly and is now headed to the Senate floor for a vote. If passed, A.B. 1857 will go a long way towards discouraging misguided individuals from acquiring big cats like tigers, lions and cougars as "pets." These animals invariably suffer in captivity as their natural impulses to roam and hunt are thwarted, and the fact that mutilations like declawing are required to control them is further testament to the folly of keeping them in captivity. Declawing, which removes portions of the bone in each toe, is also particularly cruel to larger cats who, because their greater weight, can suffer permanent lameness when their paws are surgically deformed.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians (AAZV), and the American Association of Wildlife Veterinarians (AAWV) all agree declawing big cats is ill-advised, and they officially oppose the procedure because complications can arise that can cripple or even kill the animals.
Also expected for a final vote any day is Senate Bill 1520, to ban the force-feeding of ducks and geese to produce foie gras. S.B. 1520 passed the Senate and also passed in an Assembly committee earlier this year (see HUMANElines Issue 306 ), and has just one vote left before becoming law. If passed, it will set a precedent that may pave the way for similar farmed animal protection bills in other states.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
1. Please call, fax and e-mail your California state senator immediately and urge him or her to support A.B. 1857 to ban the practice of declawing wild cats. Also, contact your state assemblyperson and ask that s/he vote YES on SB 1520, to ban the cruel force feeding of birds for foie gras production.
To find the name of your senator and your assemblyperson, as well as their contact information, go to The Fund for Animals' legislative directory .
2. Please also contact Governor Schwarzenegger and urge him to sign A.B. 1857 and S.B. 1520 into law when they come to his desk.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
State Capitol Building
Sacramento, CA 95814
916-445-2841, press 7
Send e-mail through: www.govmail.ca.gov
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