Jan 2, 2015 - Shelter & Rescue    9 Comments

Starting 2015 with Long-Needed Conversations

NAIA President Patti Strand spoke on two extremely important animal welfare issues in recent NPR articles:


We strongly believe that having a serious, factual, and civil discussion about these issues will result in the improved welfare, health, and retention of pets everywhere. We are thrilled to kick off the new year with vital issues like these!





  • Steen Goddik

    Stop supporting puppy mills, and perhaps people would listen more. Right now, you are just mill apologists.

    • DC

      This is such a frustrating accusation. Supporting freedom for all can exist alongside taking action against those who are cruel to animals. I implore you to hear the information presented without a knee jerk reaction. Over 20 years ago, activists vowed to make raising animals as companions synonymous with drunk driving through costly PR campaigns. As a cruelty investigator, I supported initial laws restricting dog owners. I no longer can because the trajectory toward eliminating domesticated animals is imminent unless we fight back. The recent case in Waukegan in which a marine was arrested and his one litter of pups confiscated based on interpretation of a civil code requiring a $25 permit is a reality. He was not given an option to purchase the permit, or a citation or a HEARING or even a constitutionally guaranteed right to appeal. Apparently, written into this law is a waiver of due process. This is happening now. If you have a canine family member, the government can take him on a technicality and after you post bail you can be denied access to your dog–permanently.

    • Marcella Covault

      Steen, you don’t know what you are talking about. NAIA is one of the very best pro-animal AND pro-human/animal bond organizations in the U.S. Those who support NAIA are animal welfarists, rather than animal rights cult members (like PeTA, H$U$, et al).

    • simplysimone

      What exactly is a puppy mill?

    • Cindy Buckmaster

      A lot is revealed in this particular comment and Steen shouldn’t be seen as a villain here. He is not alone in this sort of singular and black and white thinking. To be sure, his position is based on a strong love for animals. This discussion is one of many related to animals that demonstrates our human need to be on one ‘side’ or another. We waste all kinds of time arguing for our ‘side’, sometimes even selecting some truths over others to solidify our arguments…to solidify the ‘us and them’ reality that is destroying nations and disconnecting us from our natural compassion for all living creatures. The thing that kills me is that our animals’ true needs get lost in the arguments. The bottom line here is that there are sociopaths in every walk of life. These are awful people who neglect or abuse animals for profit. For the sake of this discussion, some are ‘rescuers’ and some are ‘breeders’, and these people are the exception, not the rule. While we waste time with misplaced arguments about whether ‘breeders’ or ‘rescuers’ are villains, the actual facts of the NPR piece that reveal legitimate concerns for animal health and well-being are ignored. All of us who truly love animals must abandon our ‘side’, consider ALL truths, accept the shortcomings of humanity, and come TOGETHER…in our love for our animals, not in our love for arguments. It’s clear to me that everyone on this thread loves animals.The truth has no sides. It is what it is. Let’s address the issues raised in this piece with open hearts and open minds and make a real difference for our animals.

      • Timbreblue

        The problem is that the animal rightists seek to pass laws that will stop sociopaths from owning animals, and there is no way to do that without preventing most good people from owning animals as well. The only way to address the problem of sociopaths mistreating animals is on a case by case basis.

  • Cindy Cooke

    Dr. Steen, I have been trying desperately to engage with you in a discussion of this very important issue. On the ChicagoNow.com page, your responses have consisted of calling me crazy and mealy-mouthed, the latter a charge that all who know me would find pretty amusing. In any event, perhaps we can start talking here. I’m a lawyer, so precision of speech is important to me. If you would define “puppy mill” for me as YOU understand the term, we can be sure that we’re both talking about the same thing.

    • Timbreblue

      Unfortunately, as evidenced here, the proponents of animal rights do not want a meaningful conversation. They prefer to hurl insults and run for cover. You would think if they understood the issues and wanted to convert us, they would welcome a calm, sane discussion, but that does not see, to be the case.

  • Milly

    Is there such a thing as irresponsible breeders? Sure. Is there such a thing as irresponsible owners? Also sure. Some people are capable of caring wonderfully for multiple animals, while others can’t seem to adequately care for a single pet, and the same goes for how people care for their children, either well & responsibly or slipshod. Animals can end up in shelters due to an irresponsible owner of a single pet, that got out or wasn’t properly socialized, or that accidentally was bred.
    Why is it the US’s responsibility to care for all the animals from around the world — Afghanistan, China, Russia, Mexico, et al? The article states that demand outstrips supply & that the shelter mentioned had been placing 300/year & is now placing 4,400/per year. To deny that that’s a business is naive.
    We scrutinize human adoptions but we do far less to scrutinize animals imported as “rescues.” The health, welfare & safety of our population need to be taken into account as well.
    The interstate as well as international trade in animals is huge & largely illegal. There is even a federal program to try to regulate importation especially at the Mexico border.
    A case can theoretically be made for “humane relocation,” moving animals from areas of “excess” to areas of deficit. Most of those are animals from low income areas where people lack the financial wherewithal to care properly & where the animals are randomly bred.To make assumptions beyond that is simply wrong.