Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Yet Another Reason Not To Like PETA

An article from The Center For Consumer Freedom recently reported under the article title that "PETA Killed 95 Percent of Adoptable Pets in its Care During 2008." As noted by Feminist Law Professors, although the source of the information is a pro-meat industry group, the article seems accurate. The article reads:

Today the nonprofit Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) published documents online showing that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) killed 95 percent of the adoptable pets in its care during 2008. Despite years of public outrage over its euthanasia program, the animal rights group kills an average of 5.8 pets every day at its Norfolk, VA headquarters.

According to public records from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, PETA killed 2,124 pets last year and placed only seven in adoptive homes. Since 1998, a total of 21,339 dogs and cats have died at the hands of PETA workers.

Despite having a $32 million budget, PETA does not operate an adoption shelter. PETA employees make no discernible effort to find homes for the thousands of pets they kill every year. Last year, the Center for Consumer Freedom petitioned Virginia’s State Veterinarian to reclassify PETA as a slaughterhouse. . . .

. . . CCF obtained PETA’s “Animal Record” filings since 1998 from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Members of the public can see these documents at

Skeptical? Click here to see the documents.) . . .

Read the whole article here. I agree with what Feminist Law Professors wrote in reaction: "[Peta's] apparently so busy convincing women to appear naked, it doesn’t have time to find placements for homeless critters. Thanks a lot PETA, for making people who actually do care about animal rights look stupid and hypocritical by association."

I really do want to like PETA, but the more I learn, the scarier PETA becomes.


Runaway said...

I don't know why a vegan would cite a misnamed fast food industry front group as a reliable source. If you take a look at PETA's website, you can get their side of the story, and the "Center for Consumer Freedom" can get back to defending the Canadian seal slaughter.

BermanExposed.org ConsumerDeception.com

The Professional Vegan said...

For readers, PETA's response is available here (warning, there are graphic pictures): http://blog.peta.org/archives/2009/03/why_we_euthaniz.php

My post does not cite the Center for Consumer Freedom as a reliable source on all issues or, in fact, any issue except this one. I make no claim as to its reliability except as to that one article. I believe my post makes that clear. Further, I defer to Feminist Law Professors, where I initially found the article. And I clearly mentioned that the group was pro-meat.

Reading PETA's response brings forth a jumble of thoughts and questions, at least in my mind. Why is it legal to euthanize animals, but not humans? How did PETA know that these animals wanted to be euthanized? Is there some percentage that could have been put on an animal version of pain management? Why is PETA's euthanization of these animals commendable (they present it as commendable)? Is the use and then killing of farm animals (such as chickens for eggs and cows for milk) that are spent also commendable? And, if it is, how does that impact my reasons for being a vegan? I view part of the torture of farm animals as the eventual premature killing . . . even if they are spent and used and in pain . . .

I still have lots of trouble with PETA's advertising techinques . . . and I still question the euthanization.

Lianne said...

It’s disingenuous, to say the least, for the deceitfully-named Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) to complain about the number of unwanted and suffering animals whom PETA has been forced to euthanize because their guardians requested it, or because no good homes exist for them.

CCF is a front group for Philip Morris, Outback Steakhouse, KFC, cattle ranchers, and other animal exploiters who kill millions of animals every year, not out of compassion, but out of greed. CCF promotes meat-eating and defends corporations that send billions of cows, chickens, pigs, and other animals to terrifying, gruesome, and painful deaths in slaughterhouses.

PETA handled far more animals than 2,124 in 2008. In fact, we took in more than 10,000 dogs and cats, spaying and neutering all of them at low to no cost. We gave them shots, fixed their wounds and treated their illnesses, and returned them to the community. Most of the animals we took in and euthanized could hardly be called "pets," as they had spent their lives on heavy chains, for instance. They were unsocialized, never having been inside a building of any kind or known a pat on the head. Others were indeed someone's, but they were aged, sick, injured, dying, too aggressive to place, and the like, and PETA offered them a release from suffering, with no charge to their owners or custodians.

Those figures also do not include the hundreds upon hundreds of dogs and cats whose suffering PETA works to alleviate by providing them with free food when their owners are poor, clean water buckets, sturdy dog houses, straw for winter, and more, or the hundreds of adoptable dogs and cats we will not take in but refer to walk-in animal shelters and adoption centers. Since 2001, PETA's low- to no-cost spay-and-neuter mobile clinics, SNIP and ABC, have sterilized more than 50,000 animals, preventing hundreds of thousands of animals from being born, neglected, abandoned, abused, or euthanized when no one wanted them. We also actively decrease the number of animals who end up in animal shelters only to be euthanized for lack of good homes by using star power to promote spaying and neutering in ads across the country.
On a national level, PETA is focusing on the root of the problem through our Animal Birth Control (ABC) campaign. The ABC campaign targets breeders, pet stores, and cat- and dog-breeding mills and in an active way through protests, PSAs, celebrity support, and investigations and puts the blame for the overpopulation crisis squarely where it belongs—with those who breed animals or allow their animals to breed. As long as animals are bred, homeless dogs and cats in animal shelters will die because there simply aren't enough good homes for them all.

As long as animals are still be purposely bred and people aren't spaying and neutering their companions, open-admission animal shelters and organizations like PETA must do society's dirty work. Euthanasia is not a solution to overpopulation but rather a tragic necessity given the present crisis. PETA is proud to be a "shelter of last resort," where animals who have no place to go or who are unwanted or suffering are welcomed with love and open arms.

You can read more about this in Ingrid Newkirk's last blog: http://blog.peta.org/archives/2009/03/why_we_euthaniz.php

The Professional Vegan said...

To continue the discussion, also see this post: http://terriermandotcom.blogspot.com/2009/03/petas-dog-shelter-is-really-slaughter.html

Pai said...

The CCF simply reposts public-access information available from the state of Virginia itself.

Harping on the biased nature of the CCF is avoiding the reality that is plain to see if you look at the actual data available from PETA's own records.

Even the worst funded and run 'county kill shelters' manage to save more than ONLY SEVEN animals in an entire year. Also, PETA consistantly refuses to publish the criteria they use to euthanize their animals. But seeing as how they have said that simply being a pet is abusive to animals, I don't doubt that their concept of 'freeing them from suffering' is a lot different than the average person's.

For a damning comparison, check out the adoption/euthanasia numbers of Tompkins County NY's ASPCA shelter.

PETA has so much more money, resources, and publicity than the average community ASPCA... yet they do a sh*tty job at 'sheltering' animals. That's completely backwards for an organization that claims they see animals as the equals of humans in value. If that was true, you'd think they could do at least as good of a job as Best Friends Animal Society or any of the MANY other animal rescue organizations out there, who somehow manage to save MOST of the animals they rescue. Far more than seven.

PETA is more of a 'death cult' than a true animal rights organization -- they see death as a more beautiful, kinder option for animals than living as companions of humans. In reality, however, NOTHING is worse than death, even a painless death, if that death is NOT NECESSARY.

Pai said...

Here is a good article exposing the fallacy of the 'killing as kindness' belief that PETA indulges in.

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