In March, the ASPCA assisted local law enforcement, the FBI and the Missouri State Highway Patrol in a multistate dog fighting investigation that resulted in the seizure of nearly 100 animals from multiple locations in Missouri, Kansas and Texas. Since then, an ASPCA team has been working around the clock to care for the rescued animals. We’ve also been fighting for justice.
That’s why we’re pleased that yesterday in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Kansas, Pete Davis Jr., 38, and Melvin Robinson, 42, each pleaded guilty to one count of transporting dogs to participate in animal fighting. The charges carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison, and sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 9. Charges for a defendant in Texas are pending.
As a result of the hearing, dogs seized from the defendants’ properties in Missouri will be signed over to the ASPCA. We will explore placement options with various rescue groups. Dogs placed with ASPCA response partner shelters after this hearing will be the second group from the case to be placed for adoption.
The ASPCA works hard to ensure that there are good laws on the books to protect animals across the country. But we can’t do it without the grassroots advocacy of our dedicated ASPCA supporters!
The most powerful way for animal advocates to help reshape our laws is through lobbying their legislators directly. We help you do that by hosting Lobby Days, where we invite passionate citizens like you to be trained by our advocacy experts and make your voices heard at your state Capitol.
Be part of history and make real change for our animals—join our ASPCA Advocacy Brigade. Sign up now, and ask your friends and family to join, so you’ll never miss out on the next Lobby Day, grassroots training or opportunity to take action. Together, we are unstoppable!
Sarah R.’s cat Willa, adopted from the ASPCA Adoption Center in May 2012, really enjoys New York City living. From Sarah’s apartment window, Willa can spend hours doing her favorite thing: pigeon-watching. Sarah and Willa love spending time together, and it’s clear they are two peas in a pod. Sarah shared the following story with us:
I got Sparkle, now named Willa, from the ASPCA on Mother's Day in May 2012. I saw her and immediately knew she was the right cat for me. I had placed her back in her enclosure and asked to view another cat, but Willa became incredibly jealous and was not having it. My friends, the staff and I laughed when Willa gave me a look that said, "Don’t even think about getting that other cat."
I went with my instincts to get the cat with the "sparkly eyes"—Mrs. Sparkle. I brought a little red collar along with a bird toy and carrier with hearts colored in lime green, pink and purple along with me to the Adoption Center. Everyone knew she was going to a loving home.
Willa was a handful at first, but she has been a purrrrre joy. There are plenty of windows in the apartment for Willa to watch the pigeons. Each night after I come home from work, I’ll pick her up, and we give each other kisses. I then ask her, "Did you catch a bird today Willa?" I bought her a bird toy that chirps when you move or shake it.
When she’s not birdwatching, Willa loves to climb to the highest of heights. When she’s on top of the cabinet, she likes to play peek-a-boo. She makes sure she has my full attention from above. It’s really quite cute. At the end of the day, we both have our meals and watch television shows. In the morning, Willa is my little alarm clock. Her technique is to wake me up by going for my feet from under the covers.
Willa is a spitfire and a sweet girl. Adopting her was the best decision I have ever made!
The U.S. Senate lost a voice for animals this week with the passing of Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ). A leader on many important pieces of legislation to help animals, his contributions will have a lasting impact for years to come.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katina, which saw many people forced to leave their animals behind as they evacuated, Sen. Lautenberg helped pass the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards (PETS) Act. This legislation, signed into law in 2006, ensures that localities consider pets and animals in their disaster plans. The ASPCA sees the benefits of Sen. Lautenberg’s legacy today as we assist states and municipalities in disaster recovery efforts all across the country.
Senator Lautenberg was also a leader on legislation to protect animals during air travel, and had a special fondness for horses. He was a leader on the Horse Transportation Safety Act, which would ban the cruel transport of horses in double-decked trailers, and was a longtime supporter of legislation to ban the grisly practice of horse slaughter. The senator’s compassion also extended to wildlife. He fought to protect exotic animals from captive hunts; dolphins and whales from brutal slaughters; wildlife and pets from the dangers of lead shot; and polar bears from trophy hunts. He had a big heart and a strong sense of justice.
The ASPCA remembers Sen. Lautenberg for his many years of service to this country and for being a strong voice for animals on Capitol Hill.
Surveys conducted by Lake Research Partners in New Mexico, Missouri and Iowa confirm that an overwhelming majority (70%+) of voters in all three states disapprove of horse slaughter for human consumption and would oppose the opening of horse slaughter facilities in their states. Opposition to horse slaughter for human consumption in these three states is broad and deep, extending across every demographic, regional and partisan group.
Unfortunately, meat processors in at least five states—the three surveyed, as well as Oklahoma and Tennessee—are currently trying to get horse meat plants up and running. The New Mexico processor, Valley Meat Company, passed a USDA inspection in April and its permit to begin slaughtering horses for meat could come through as soon as the end of June.
Take Action There has been no slaughter of horses for human consumption in the U.S. since 2007, but there is no federal law against it. But with your help, we can fix that! Please join us in advocating for Congressional passage of the SAFE Act, a bill that would ban horse slaughter in all 50 states, as well as the transport of our horses over our borders for slaughter in other countries.