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In just one month in 2016, eight barn fires in Ontario killed nearly 53,000 animals.
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The Canadian government is consulting Canadians on three food law or policy changes that would impact animals.
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I've been documenting our use, abuse and sharing of spaces with non-human animals for nearly two decades. Since 2005, I've attended many rodeos across Canada, and what I've documented time and time again is that while rodeos might be a fun day out for us, they are no fun for all the other participants: the animals.
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Sadly, in laboratories across Canada, female rabbits, guinea pigs and rats are confined in barren cages and bred for the purposes of testing cosmetics and their ingredients. This senseless suffering continues despite steadfast opposition from the great majority of Canadians.
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The Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act (S-214), a bill to end cosmetic animal testing in Canada, passed its second reading in the Senate and is being studied in committee before making its way to the House of Commons. It's currently the only piece of legislation that addresses a very specific (and unnecessary) area of animal testing.
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That is all the time the Canadian government afforded seals to give birth to and nurse their pups. The sealers claim they will target adult seals in this section of the hunt. But for mother seals and their very young pups, it spells disaster. Sealing boats crashing through the ice, gunfire and the cries of dying seals will shatter the peace of the nursery.
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Allowing the commercial seal slaughter to proceed while helpless pups are still nursing from their mothers is absolutely unacceptable. Harp seals are already facing threats from climate change and commercial exploitation; we should not be removing one of the few remaining protections left for this species.
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After a year or two, organic hens are packed in plastic crates and trucked to the same slaughterhouses as their conventional counterparts. There, they will be turned into chicken nuggets and deli meat. Meanwhile, in organic as in conventional productions, male chicks will be systematically tossed into grinders at birth because they are deemed economically useless: they obviously do not produce eggs, and their genes aren't optimized for fast growth. Whether one eats the egg or the chicken, the problem remains the same.
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The world's scientists vehemently condemn the captivity of whales, dolphins and porpoises, and it's time that we listened to them. Twenty marine mammal biologists from around the world recently signed a collective letter in support of the goals of Bill S-203, which would outlaw the practice of keeping these animals in captivity in Canada.
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There is neither scientific evidence that grey seals are impacting salmon stocks, nor anything to indicate that a seal cull would improve salmon recovery. In fact, scientists warn that killing off top predators such as seals could make the situation worse, resulting in unexpected and undesired consequences on salmon and other species.
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Proposing a research project under the guise of science to provide cover for an ongoing illegal slaughter of wildlife in a protected area and allow individuals to profit financially from it -- and then pretending that this has anything to do with "sustainable development" -- is a joke.
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At different points they could express happiness, sadness, loneliness, excitement and even anxiety. Dogs are also very intelligent creatures that know and understand what is going on around them. One of our dogs could tell we would be going on vacation whenever we brought out our suitcases and would start sulking a day in advance. It must be appreciated that dogs are smart and emotional beings.
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CFHS took a look back through 2016 and pulled together the biggest stories of this year's Canadian animal welfare advances (The Good), setbacks (The Bad) and things that made our jaws drop (The Ugly). We've also included info on the top five international animal welfare wins from 2016. They appear in no particular order.
Thanks to the hard work of humane societies and SPCAs across Canada, we have a lot to celebrate this holiday season. The Canadian Federation of Humane Societies has just released our annual Animal Shelter Statistics Report, and it is full of great news for companion animals in Canada.
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It's a position that the public can easily support by refusing to patronize commercial sled dog tours and races. Dogs don't need to be mythologized. They just need to be loved, respected, treated well and given the chance to express their full range of behaviours.
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Canada's humane societies and SPCAs have been telling their own individual stories since the 1800s, but we haven't had the chance to tell the collective, Canadian story until now. A new, first-of-its-kind sector report just released by the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies gives us that bigger picture view.
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Vancouver has long been a vegetarian-friendly town. Back in 2010, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals named the city the sixth most veg-friendly city in North America and number one in Canada. But Vancouver and the rest of B.C.'s Lower Mainland have become more than just a good place to buy a veggie burger.
When I introduced Bill C-246, I said it would help to bring our animal protection laws into the 21st century, but it was really a basket of modest measures to improve our laws. While Bill C-246 was defeated, citizens across our country spoke loudly in support of improving our animal protection laws. And here is the silver lining: an issue that was not on our government's agenda is now there, thanks to the incredible outreach efforts of compassionate Canadians of all political stripes.
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Individual donors forced to pick up the slack.
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The problem for the dairy industry -- and for all modern animal agriculture -- is that many people find their practices disturbing and unacceptable. And "educating" consumers by showing them exactly what happens on farms is hardly going to help.
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Owning exotic animals is a growing trend in Canada.
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Cosmetic animal testing is still legal in eight out of every 10 countries worldwide, including Canada. So we are asking Canadians to join us in a #DayofAction on September 13 to urge our elected officials in Ottawa to get behind the Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act and make Canada the next country to #BeCrueltyFree.
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Rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, hamsters and rats are made to suffer in archaic chemical poisoning tests all in the name of beauty. Common tests include chemicals dripped into their eyes; skin irritation tests, and oral toxicity tests where mega-doses are force-fed into an animal's stomach to observe signs of poisoning.
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On September 28th, Canada's Parliament will vote on a bill to improve the welfare of animals in this country: Bill C-246 "The Modernizing Animal Protections Act." If the good guys win, the bill will proceed to an all-party committee for review and possible amendment.
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Canada's food and agriculture industries have launched a public relations blitz designed to build public trust and confidence in Canadian food and farming. But even a cursory look at how this campaign is being conducted and who's behind it suggests consumers should cast a skeptical eye on its claims. To put it simply, Farm & Food Care Canada is not what it seems.
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For the last 17 years, advocates have been trying to effect legislation that blasts us out of our sad, inexcusable reliance on the 1892 Act For Animals, into 2016. This year, Nathaniel Erskine-Smith, MP, has brought forward Bill C-246 "Modernizing the Animal Protections Act."
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The CBC, as our national public broadcaster, should presumably reflect modern Canadian values, but when it comes to its coverage of the Calgary Stampede, it chooses to ignore the values of the majority of Canadians who are opposed to rodeos.
The Canadian Act for Animals was written in 1892 -- that's not a typo. We've had some changes through the years, but still have few enforceable laws to protect animals even from extreme neglect and cruelty in this country. It is well known that Canada falls far behind other nations recognizing the sentience and rights of animals.
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Last week, authorities removed more than 137 tigers from the temple grounds and also found 40 dead tiger cubs in a freezer and 20 more preserved in jars.
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One of the CPRA's board directors, Cody Cassidy, doesn't seem to afford wildlife "proper care and management." In fact, Mr. Cassidy pleaded guilty to several poaching-related charges in July of last year, according to the Red Deer Advocate.
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Canada Goose and Moose Knuckles: Both use fur trim, both charge a hefty price for their luxury jackets ($600 to $1,000), and both are allegedly deceiving consumers about the true nature of the products they're peddling. But the authorities are only taking action against one of them. What gives?
The stereotype of vegans and vegetarians as self-righteous, hectoring, spoilsports pushing their puritan agenda was never fair. Now that negative perception is disappearing altogether. The promotion of plant-based pleasure has arrived.