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Animal Welfare?

Strange mailings and chained dogs? You’ll only find one of those at our farm.

I got a strange mailing over the weekend. An envelope with no return address, and addressed to "Holly 2EC" came to my home mailing address. Inside was a brochure for a Pennsylvania group called Dogs Deserve Better, which apparently seeks to outlaw the chaining of dogs. There was also a glittery homemade postcard, the likes of which my first-grader could have produced. It had lots of heart stickers and a puppy sticker, and a clear computer mailing label that said, "DOGS NEED LOVE TOO." And lots of purple glitter. Purple glitter which then proceeded to get all over my desk, and the rest of our mail.


The whole thing was bizarre. The brochure reads half like an informational campaign and half as though it’s targeting the reader. Or speaking for the dog. "I know I deserve better. I only wish you knew it too," reads the front. And inside, "I am a pack animal. Since my pack of long ago is gone, you, my human family, have become my pack. When I’m not with you, I suffer mentally and physically. I’m shut out of my pack and I don’t know why. I deserve more, please start meeting my needs today."


So I’m not sure if this was a random mailing, or something a little more targeted. I don’t want to be paranoid. However, just because I believe the Humane Society of the U.S. is selling a pack of animal rights lies (speaking of packs), doesn’t mean I chain my dog. For the record, we have a beautiful Border Collie, Mandy, who’s been in our family for almost 11 years. I do recall chaining her a couple times when she was tiny, but only to protect her before she understood her boundaries. After those first couple weeks, she’s run freely and (literally) beaten a path on the quarter-mile between our house and the farm.


But speaking of HSUS, they seem to be losing ground, at least in the courts. Check out what Consumer Freedom – a group that’s devoted itself to monitoring HSUS and its funds – had to say today about HSUS’s mismanagement of funds and racketeering charges.


Six months ago, I wasn’t sure agriculture could beat the HSUS behemoth. But as they suffer animal ag defeats as they have in Ohio, and as more media outlets cover their funding allocation (like, for example, of the $34 million HSUS collected for pet victims of Hurricane Katrina, less than $7 million has been publicly disclosed as actually helping those animals) I’m becoming more optimistic all the time.

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