Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Dog who survived 2006 shooting dies

Raleigh News & Observer/Thomasi McDonald

CHARLOTTE -- Truman, the chocolate Labrador retriever who survived a police shooting nearly three years ago and went on to enjoy bananas, his new kid brother and dressing up as Tupac Shakur for Halloween, died Saturday.

He was 13.

"He was our child with fur," owner Meredith Phillips said on Monday from her home in Charlotte.

The head wound Truman suffered on Christmas Day 2006 at the hands of a Raleigh police officer, who was investigating a dog-bite report, was not a factor in his death. It was pancreatitis that finally claimed the 85-pound family pet, Phillips said.

Read the rest of the article here... and a shout-out to fellow animal law attorney Joe Mustian for the heads-up!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Just how healthy is that puppy in the pet shop window?

By Patty Khuly, Special for USA TODAY

Ever planned on buying a perfect, purebred pup from a pet shop? Or maybe you felt sorry for that little fluffy kitten you glimpsed in the window. If so, you've got company. Hundreds of thousands of pets are bought and sold from retail establishments every year.

I should know … I see my fair share. And I'm sick of them.

Now, before you rush to condemn my insensitivity, let me explain: There's almost nothing I like less than the obfuscations, corruption and abuse that underlies much of this industry. There may be animal-selling retail establishments in the U.S. that don't deal in smoke and mirrors, but I don't know about them.

Click here for the rest of the article...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Three charged in dogfighting ring at suburban Chicago daycare

Three men were charged Wednesday -- and two others are being sought – for their involvement in a dogfighting ring based in a home that also serves as a daycare facility in west suburban Maywood.

Read more in this Chicago Sun-Times article...

Hog lawsuits raising stink in Missouri

San Francisco Chronicle

Friday, September 18, 2009

Get This Rat a Lawyer!

Glenn Beck says Cass Sunstein wants to give animals the right to sue humans. Really?In 1510, the respected French lawyer Bartholomew Chassenée made his name by serving as legal counsel for a horde of rats. The rats stood accused of eating through the province's barley crop. But the trial was tainted, Chassenée argued, for two reasons: First, the court failed to properly notify the rodents of the trial date. And second, the defendants could not possibly appear in court when getting there entailed risking a run-in with a cat.

Read the rest of this terrific article in Slate Magazine....

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Female fish agree bigger is better; human research may be next

The Sydney Morning Herald
Richard Macey
Sept, 17, 2009
SIZE may matter, Australian scientists have found.

In possibly the first study of its kind, Australian National University biologists found that female mosquito fish prefer males with large genitals.

Read more here...

(Sorry, I realize this has nothing to do with animal law. Just couldn't resist...)

Monday, September 14, 2009

Illinois appellate court says CAFO owner entitled to damages

Ok, most people reading this blog probably will not be happy to see this, but in the spirit of keeping up with legal rulings whether or not you agree with them comes this one from Illinois:

A Rochester hog farmer is entitled to damages stemming from a lawsuit filed by opponents of his large-scale hog operation that delayed its construction, the Illinois 4th District Appellate Court decided this week.

Read more in this recent State Journal-Register article by Debra Landis.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Now 'Pete' can say: Talk to my lawyer

Montpelier Times Argus
Thatcher Moats
Sept. 13, 2009

MONTPELIER - So far, the moose known as Pete has a well-oiled public relations team and a vigorous grassroots campaign working on his behalf.

Now he also has a lawyer.

Pamela Vesilind, a Vermont Law School professor who is an expert in the growing field of animal law, attended a rally for the moose Saturday afternoon at the Statehouse and said she was there to start gathering the facts about the case.

"We're going to represent Pete the Moose," said Vesilind.

Click here to read more about Pete and his legal team...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Cass Sunstein latest target for the anti-‘czar’ bunch

The same critics that successfully lobbied for the resignation of White House adviser Van Jones are now attacking Cass Sunstein, a prominent legal scholar and a professor at Harvard Law School. In January, the White House confirmed that Sunstein was in line to head the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, which oversees privacy, information, and regulatory policy.

Read more in Matthew Shaer's article this past week from the Christian Science Monitor...

Friday, September 11, 2009

From Deep Pacific, Ugly and Tasty, With a Catch

Seems that the mystery fish inside a McDonald's Filet-O-Fish is no longer a mystery. In fact, it's becoming quite the hot topic for discussion concerning whether it is being over-fished.

Read more in this recent New York Times article by William Broad...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Appeals court upholds decision to allow service dog in southwestern Illinois school

Belleville News-Democrat

MOUNT VERNON -- The 5th District Appellate Court in Mount Vernon has denied Columbia School District's bid to put on hold a Monroe County judge's order allowing an autistic student's service dog into the school.

Read the rest of the article...

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Cows 'should be genetically engineered not to feel pain'

Remember how Dr. Peter Singer's philosophical theories would cause quite a stir with folks who were not particularly inclined to take animal suffering into account in their calculus of how the world should work....

Well, I imagine that Adam Shriver of Washington University in St. Louis may stir up an equal and opposite reaction with this ethical musing...

(And, as always, a shout-out to Doug Powell at Kansas State for finding this story!)

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Animal Law Practices Grow as 'Animal Companions' Gain Acceptance

Nice little write-up earlier this week on animal law in Law.com's Legal Blog Watch. One thing I'm not sure I agree with though... the piece suggests "it's a business that is growing, even during this legal downturn."

While it may be true that there is a growing number of courses in law schools, and an increasing awareness in the public generally, (both good things, mind you), as an animal law business owner - who is friends with other animal law business owners - I'm not sure I would describe "business" as "growing" during this legal (read: economic) downturn. Sigh...

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Death and Iowa...

Sept. 1, 2009
Associated Press

WASHINGTON — An undercover video shot by an animal rights group at an Iowa egg hatchery shows workers discarding unwanted chicks by sending them alive into a grinder, and other chicks falling through a sorting machine to die on the factory floor.

Chicago-based Mercy for Animals said it shot the video at Hy-Line North America's hatchery in Spencer, Iowa, over a two-week period in May and June. The video was obtained Monday by The Associated Press.

Click for the rest of the AP release...