Archive for the ‘Rep. Buck McKeon’ Tag

Senate Bill Introduced for Big Cats & Public Safety Protection Act!   2 comments

Please reacaptived this press release from the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and take action at the two links below:

Tell Congress to protect people and big cats! HR 1998

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/get-involved/tell-congress-protect-people-and-big-cats

Tell the Senate to protect people and big cats! S 1381

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/get-involved/tell-congress-protect-people-and-big-cats-senate

IFAW Gains Senate Support for the Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act

Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Washington, DC

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn) today introduced (S.1381) the Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act. Initiated by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and supported by a coalition of animal welfare groups, the bill aims at banning private possession and breeding of tigers, lions, and other captive big cats in the United States. The House version of the bill (H.R. 1998) was introduced earlier this year by U.S. Representatives Buck McKeon (R-CA) and Loretta Sanchez (D-CA).

Current state laws addressing keeping big cats as pets widely fluctuate, with some states banning the practice while exempting a host of USDA exhibitors, and others with partial to no restrictions at all. The bill would establish a single, nationwide policy against the captive big cat pet and roadside zoo trade, while requiring current owners to register their big cats.

“The Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act is a common-sense solution to a situation that has spiraled out of control,” Senator Blumenthal said. “Thousands of dangerous big cats are kept in deplorable conditions as backyard pets and in roadside zoos across the nation. This bill would alleviate the threat these animals pose to the general public.”

Congress first introduced the bill in light of the tragedy in Zanesville, Ohio and many others preceding it. In Zanesville, an exotic animal owner released 38 big cats and 18 other dangerous animals and then took his own life. To protect the surrounding community, first responders, who were neither trained nor properly equipped to handle a situation of that magnitude, were forced to shoot and kill nearly all of the animals.

IFAW Campaigns Officer Tracy Coppola notes, “Apart from the serious animal welfare aspects of this issue, we must not forget that it poses a massive burden on the first responders who often find themselves at the forefront of dealing with the dangers that captive big cats pose when kept in private hands across America.”

IFAW’s big cats database (www.ifaw.org/bigcatadvocates) shows that since 1997, incidents involving these captive animals have resulted in 22 human deaths, including five children. Meanwhile, over 200 people have been mauled or injured and scores of big cats have been killed

In addition to the human and animal fatalities, private ownership and breeding of big cats also undermines wildlife conservation because it can contribute to illegal international wildlife trade. There is currently no way to know how many U.S.-born big cats are disposed of or when their parts are illegally sold into the black market.

The Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act now heads to the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. IFAW is calling on citizens, including all first responders, to urge their Senators to co-sponsor the bill today.

More information is available at www.ifaw.org/bigcatadvocates.

About IFAW (the International Fund for Animal Welfare)
Founded in 1969, IFAW saves animals in crisis around the world. With projects in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent cruelty to animals, and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats.

Follow IFAW on Facebook and Twitter

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/news/ifaw-gains-senate-support-big-cats-and-public-safety-protection-act

Take Action To Help Big Cats Like Tony! Big Cats & Public Safety Protection Act Re-Introduced   Leave a comment

ifaw big catsOn May 16th, 2012, U.S. Reps. Buck McKeon and Loretta Sanchez introduced the 2013 Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act (HR 1998), which would prohibit the private possession and breeding of captive big cats in the United States except at highly-qualified facilities like accredited zoos where they can be properly cared for and safely managed.

Please ask your Congress Member to co-sponsor this bill.

Easy Take Action Contact Form from IFAW here:

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/get-involved/tell-congress-protect-people-and-big-cats

Read more about The Big Cats & Public Safety Protection Act and big cats in captivity at these links from International Fund For Animal Welfare:

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/news/action-us-house-introduction-marks-important-milestone-big-cat-protection

http://www.ifaw.org/united-states/our-work/tigers/big-cats-captivity

and this press release from Congressman Buck McKeon:

http://mckeon.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=334250

HSUS Undercover Investigation Reveals Dead Tigers, Safety Threats at Oklahoma’s GW Exotic Animal Park   Leave a comment

Note: This “park” was said to be the intended home for Tony if his owner, Michael Sandlin, is forced to give him up. Read more: http://theadvocate.com/news/1608646-123/oklahoma-park-probed-in-tiger.html

HSUS Undercover Investigation Reveals Dead Tigers, Safety Threats at Oklahoma’s GW Exotic Animal Park

Park may have more dangerous predators than any other roadside zoo in the nation

May 16, 2012 – via The Humane Society of the United States


The Humane Society of the United States has released the results of an undercover investigation into an Oklahoma exotic animal park, where an investigator recorded tiger deaths, unwarranted breeding and dangerous incidents involving children and adults. HSUS undercover video footage taken at GW Exotic Animal Park in Wynnewood, Okla. in the summer and fall of 2011 shows potentially illegal actions that imperil both animals and humans.

GW Exotic Animal Park houses approximately 200 tigers and other dangerous exotic animals and is acting as a petting zoo and traveling zoo that breeds tiger and bear cubs and allows the public to handle exotic animals for a fee, both at its own facility and at shopping malls and other venues around the country. The HSUS filed a series of complaints with state and federal authorities regarding potential legal violations, and called for strengthening certain areas of the law dealing with dangerous exotic wildlife.

The results of the investigation were first reported this morning by CBS News. The HSUS says it’s a dangerous situation for tigers and people, a hazard highlighted by the mass exotic animal tragedy the nation learned of last fall in Zanesville, Ohio. The president of GW Exotic Animal Park, Joe Schreibvogel, traveled to Ohio in April 2012 to lobby against Senate Bill 310, the bill introduced by state lawmakers to restrict the private ownership of dangerous captive wildlife in response to the Zanesville incident. At that time, he claimed that Terry Thompson was murdered by animal advocates to advance an agenda to ban private ownership of dangerous exotic pets.

At least five tigers died at the facility during the investigation – two of them had been sick for months and may have been shot by GW employees. A 6-year-old tiger named Hobbes died without receiving veterinary care and a 6-week-old cub being raised inside the GW owner’s house somehow sustained head injuries and had to be euthanized. And the death of 23 infant tigers at the facility over a 13-month period between 2009 and 2010 prompted the U.S. Department of Agriculture to open an investigation into GW Exotics for the unexplained death rate at the park.

“GW Exotics may have more dangerous exotic animals than any other roadside zoo in the nation—with approximately five times as many predators as the late Terry Thompson of Zanesville, Ohio,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “At this facility, children are allowed to play with tigers as if they are domestic kittens, rather than wild cats soon to mature into the some of the world’s most lethal carnivores.”

The HSUS investigator witnessed or heard reports about numerous dangerous public interactions at GW—some with a nearly full-grown tiger—including at least six cases where visitors were bitten or scratched.

  • In August 2011, according to GW’s assistant park manager, three people suffered tiger bites at a fair, including one child whose bite became infected.
  • On Sept. 3, 2011, a tiger reportedly bit a young girl on her leg during the “play cage” portion of a tour.
  • On Sept. 11, 2011, a tiger cub scratched a young child while the child was posing for a picture.
  • On Sept. 17, 2011, a 20-week-old tiger named Dre knocked down and bit a small child. GW’s park manager told staff that the boy was bitten and scratched and that he would be bruised but that he (the manager) had “smoothed things over” with the mother and had her “sign the papers.” The next day, the same tiger was used for photo shoots at GW and photographers posed a small child bottle feeding the tiger.

The HSUS has filed complaints with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service seeking an investigation into potential violations of the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act, Endangered Species Act, Lacey Act, and Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Act; with the U.S. Department of Agriculture for potential violations of the Animal Welfare Act; and with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation for potential violations of GW’s state commercial wildlife license. HSUS has also reached out to local law enforcement concerning the results of its investigation.

The HSUS is urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture to adopt regulations banning public contact with dangerous wild animals no matter the age of the animals. Current regulations generally allow public contact with tiger cubs between the ages of 8 and 12 weeks, and encourage the reckless over breeding of tiger cubs and surplus of captive adult tigers. The HSUS is also urging Congress to pass H.R. 4122, the Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act, introduced by Reps. Buck McKeon, R-Calif., and Loretta Sanchez, D-Calif., to prohibit the private ownership and breeding of tigers and other dangerous big cats.

The investigative report is available here. B-roll video footage of the investigation is available for media download here and here.

Media Contact: Raul Arce-Contreras, 301.721.6440, rcontreras@humanesociety.org

Read Wayne’s blog on the Oklahoma investigation

http://www.humanesociety.org/news/press_releases/2012/05/ok_exotics_investigation.html

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