This year on April 26, 2012, we had a wonderful gathering of concerned citizens who participated in the Lobby Day for Animals at the Massachusetts State House. We were able to meet with legislators on animal welfare issues which I will mention below.
Since I am a member of the Human Society Veterinary Medical Association HSVMA I was also able to go with seven fellow veterinarians concerned about these issues. HSVMA is a national organization of veterinary professionals – including more than 140 Massachusetts members – with a focus on the health and well‐being of animals. Members include veterinarians, veterinary technicians and assistants, and veterinary students.
RE: Veterinary Support for H 458/ S786, The Massachusetts Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act. There is ample scientific evidence to support prohibiting restrictive animal crating systems. The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) concluded that calves must be able to at least comfortably turn around. And the Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production, which was funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts and Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, and included the former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, recommended against “all systems that restrict natural movement,” including gestation crates.
The confinement systems prohibited by this legislation are currently legal in Massachusetts. They allow producers to raise a greater number of animals on a smaller amount of land, resulting in a higher concentration of toxic animal waste, significant public health risks, and wide‐scale animal suffering. H 458/S 786 would protect the local agricultural brands and family farms of Massachusetts. Eight other states have already passed similar laws and 89 percent of Massachusetts voters polled said they would support legislation to prohibit such intensive agricultural confinement systems. The bill is supported by a broad coalition of animal health, welfare and environmental organizations, including the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA), the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), The Humane League, Farm Forward and the Massachusetts Sierra Club.
We strongly encourage your passage of this common‐sense farm animal protection reform. Thank goodness this type of farming is not used in Massachusetts but by having it not allowed in the state we can continue to improve the care that our farm animals are getting. This is just the start of reform in this area of animal husbandry and as the consumer demands more from markets like Whole Foods and others for compassionate and sustainable care for our farm animals we will become a better society. Large factory farms have animals as commodities and are not appreciating their lives as creatures with feelings. To have our food suffer from unnecessary pain and torture cannot be healthful to anyone. Having animals happy and healthy with less stress in their lives will make for better health for everyone.
RE: Veterinary Support for S 2192, An Act to Update the Municipal Animal Control Laws in Massachusetts support for S 2192,
S 2192 is a bill which would strengthen the dangerous dog law, improve the spay/neuter law for animal shelters, ensure that animal control officers receive professional training, update legal definitions pertaining to kennels, prevent the use of inhumane methods of euthanasia, and help Massachusetts municipalities save money by reducing the numbers of homeless animals under their care.
S 682 It also will address the link between animal abuse and child and domestic violence abuse, so as to protect animals if there is a restraining order against a family member, the animals will be protected as well.
S 2192 and S682 have been put forth by a broad coalition of animal health and welfare organizations, including the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA), the Animal Rescue League of Boston, the Animal Control Officers Association of Massachusetts (ACOAM), the Massachusetts Bureau of Animal Health, and the Massachusetts Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA). It is also supported by MassFed.
We strongly encourage your passage of this important animal protection and public safety legislation.
Wildlife Bills Concerning Trapping H3315 Inhumane Trapping Leghold, conibear body gripping traps that cause unnecessary animal suffering. H 3946 Sunday Hunting .. do not allow hunting on Sunday as to let others enjoy the outdoors during hunting season without the fear of guns and injury do to hunting. H1998 Moose Hunting.. there are less than 1000 moose in the state and starting a hunting season will diminish the herds. Putting signage up warning about moose crossings will reduce moose and car interaction. You can contact your legislators in support of the the bills.