Target: U.S. Congress
Goal: To create a federal law prohibiting animal pounds from selling cats and dogs to animal testing facilities.
Unclaimed pound cats and dogs are legally sold in the name of research and consumer product-testing throughout America. These former family pets are bought by ‘Class B’ dealers and sold to laboratories where they are subject to painful medical treatments and cramped living spaces. According to an undercover investigation conducted by PETA in a University of Utah laboratory: ‘Cats and dogs who were purchased from local animal shelters had holes drilled into their skulls, medical devices implanted in their chests, and chemicals injected into their brains.’ This pitiless practice is banned in many other countries and in at least 17 states, but elsewhere pound seizure is overlooked. Minnesota and Oklahoma actually still require their publicly-funded shelters to provide labs with animals for which they cannot find a home. The Federal government needs to recognize the cruelty which surrounds this practice and create a law which bans pound seizure in all cases.
While animal testing is unacceptable on all fronts, using cats and dogs which were previously accustomed to a comfortable home is especially saddening. These animals suffer more extreme stress than their counterparts who were bred for the job. They must learn to live in a cramped cage which makes even relieving themselves stressful. Any pet who has been brought up house-trained will experience discomfort at being denied a separate space in which to go to the bathroom. As well, the practice of pound seizure by any shelter has a serious negative impact on their reputation within a community. If the public is aware of and opposes a shelter’s decision to sell animals to laboratories or ‘Class B’ dealers then they are less likely to choose it as a place to bring in animals which have been lost or for which they are no longer able to care. This leads to more stray and feral animals, and contributes to the already high overpopulation of both cats and dogs. Additionally, it increases the cost of tax-supported animal control. A federal ban on pound seizure needs to be enacted in order to eliminate the suffering of hundreds of thousands of former pets throughout the U.S. and to maintain a stable community for animals which have lost their homes.
Dear U.S. Congress,
The cruel of practice of ‘Pound Seizure’ has gone on for too long in our country. The quality of life for hundreds of thousands of cats and dogs is compromised each year in the name of medical research and testing of consumer products. These animals were bred and raised to be pets, not a disposable commodity to be treated without their welfare in mind. Once accustomed to a comfortable home, seized cats and dogs find themselves under a great deal of stress and are subject to painful experimentation. Many states already ban pound seizure but this needs to become a nation-wide policy.
In addition to this cruelty, pound seizure also reduces the level of respect a community has for any shelter which participates in the practice. People are more willing to ‘set free’ their animals than willingly risk their sale to a lab if they surrender their pet to a shelter. This contributes to feral and stray animals, as well as the general issue of overpopulation. A federal ban on pound seizure will restore faith in the animal shelter community and allow them to do their jobs more effectively. It will also eliminate the suffering of many cats and dogs who have been raised to live comfortably in a home, not a lab cage which is required to be only 6 inches longer than the animal it contains. Let’s end the needless stress and mistreatment of the animals we regard as parts of our own families.
[Your Name Here]