POLITICS & ANIMALS: 2020
In an exciting development for pet lovers, animal welfare has entered the stage of Presidential politics.
Julian Castro became the first 2020 presidential candidate to roll out a comprehensive plan for animal protection.
Animal Welfare is a growing hot topic for voters, especially after President Trump’s plans to weaken portions of the Endangered Species Act, which was announced over the summer. The Endangered Species act was passed in 1973 with bipartisan support to protect animals like the Bald Eagle.
Castro’s plans would make animal cruelty a federal crime and would strengthen the Endangered Species Act.
This is not an endorsement of any candidate.
THE YEAR OF THE DOGS
As a National Geographic photographer, traveling the world to photograph lions, tigers, and bears was a regular day’s work for Vince Musi. All that changed when his son turned sixteen – he decided to try something different; to spend some quality time at home on Sullivan’s Island and open a hometown studio to photograph dogs.
The result is The Year of the Dogs; over 100 one-of-a-kind dogs from Musi’s year in the studio matched with witty ‘dogographies’ gleaned from his time spent with each subject. From a Labrador that likes opera to a kleptomaniac miniature golden doodle!
Musi has been a generous contributor to Carolina Tails and Charleston Animal Society, providing cover photos in the past and photographing a spread on Military dogs. The Year of the Dogs is available now and you can also follow Musi on his wildly popular Instagram feed.
TENSIONS RISE BETWEEN CITY AND CARRIAGE INDUSTRY
The relationship between the downtown carriage industry and the City of Charleston is straining. Tourism officials want to make some changes to keep horses and tourists safe – but carriage company owners oppose the plans.
“It’s disappointing that the carriage industry is fighting efforts by the city to protect the safety of these working animals and their passengers,” said Charleston Animal Society President & CEO Joe Elmore.
One amendment would give the city the power to stop carriage tours in emergency situations, including severe weather. Representatives of the carriage industry have opposed the amendment, complaining that it gives the city too much power and that the decision to stop tours due to emergency situations should be made by the owners of the carriage companies.
This proposed amendment comes on the heels of an appeal filed with the city by members of the carriage industry, citing lost revenue after tours were stopped for about an hour in May during severe weather.
Another proposed change would require carriage companies to immediately report any accident or incident causing injury to person, animal, or property to both emergency services and the city. Currently, the carriage companies can wait up to 24 hours following an incident to submit a written report to the city.
PETLAND INVESTIGATIONS CONTINUE
The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is out with another shocking investigation of Petland Pet Stores.
Their undercover investigations at Petland locations across the country have repeatedly exposed animal suffering and neglect. The national chain of pet stores (the last to still sell dogs) has been linked to the cruel puppy mill industry.
A Petland in Summerville changed owners last year and no longer offers shelter animals from Dorchester PAWS – selling animals from breeders instead.
At each of the seven stores investigated by HSUS over the past year, HSUS found sick puppies in back rooms— and dead animals in freezers at five of the seven stores.
Carolina Tails ran the previous HSUS investigation in our Summer 2019 issue. Watch the latest HSUS investigation on our website at CarolinaTails.org.
The call to action is to tell Petland to STOP selling puppies and rabbits. Other major pet stores only offer shelter animals for adoption.