(WILDLIFE TRADE/EXOTIC ANIMALS) With the rise in popularity of Netflix's hit show Tiger King, the world is finally getting a glimpse into the life of Joe "Exotic" Maldonado-Passage (previously Shreibvogel) and the exotic animal trade. But as many long-time Global Animals may know, Joe has been bad news for tigers for quite some time. No doubt, Tiger King glamorizes Joe Exotic and a number of other crude individuals, but it also sends an important message to a mainstream audience (albeit in a dramatic Jerry Springer fashion) that states: "More tigers are privately owned in the U.S. than exist in the wild--and these are the type of people who own them. Let's do something about it all while laughing at their expense." In the article below, Global Animal uncovers the truth behind the G.W. Exotic Animal Memorial Park and Joe's travelling tiger cub exhibit. Little did we know, this story--published nearly a decade ago--was just the tip of the iceberg for this notorious animal abuser.
(PET HEALTH/ANIMAL SAFETY) As the coronavirus continues to spread across the globe, and given the abundance of false information circulating the web, it's critical to stay informed regarding disease transmission details. For instance, contrary to false rumors, multiple vetted organizations, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO), have all confirmed pets are not at risk of transmitting COVID-19. Continue reading below to learn all you need to know about keeping your pets safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes pet-safe cleaning info, as well as tips on how to keep your pet occupied and active during this uncertain time. -- Global Animal
(HEALTH & SAFETY) WUHAN, CHINA -- As the coronavirus outbreak has only intensified, killing over 2,000 people and infecting more than 78,000 in China alone, activists are struggling to keep up with the number of animals left behind. Since those infected with COVID-19 cannot bring their animals with them to quarantine, and despite confirmation from the World Health Organization that pets cannot contract the virus, an estimated 50,000 pets have been abandoned amid Wuhan's lockdown. Volunteers joined forces to handle the high volume of animals in need, but they are beginning to grow desperate as they run out of food, with many unable to go outside out of fear of getting infected. Read on to learn more about animal rescue efforts in Wuhan, and take note that many of these animals will be available for adoption once the lockdown is over. -- Global Animal
(WILDLIFE CONSERVATION/PICTURES) March 3 is World Wildlife Day, a day to celebrate and appreciate all that Mother Nature has to offer, from plants to wild animals. On December 20, 2013, the sixty-eighth session of the United Nations General assembly proclaimed March 3—the day the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) was adopted—as World Wildlife Day. — Global Animal
(ENDANGERED SPECIES/POLAR BEARS) What better time to help save the polar bear than today, International Polar Bear Day? With less than 25,000 left in the wild, polar bears are on the brink of extinction due to the devastating effects of global warming. In Canada—which unfortunately still allows polar bear trophy hunts despite their endangered status—a polar bear was forced to swim 426 miles in search of arctic sea ice; ice that continues to hit record lows. Fortunately, there are a variety of ways you can help save the polar bear from extinction—from riding a bike to shopping locally. So in the spirit International Polar Bear Day, check out these some simple ways to help save the polar bear. — Global Animal
(HEALTH & ANIMAL SAFETY) CHINA -- Campaigners in areas hit by the deadly coronavirus are calling for the cull of street and domestic dogs and cats after rumors spread that they can also be infected with the illness. While an estimated five million people reportedly fled the city of Wuhan ahead of the Chinese New Year, it's estimated at least 50,000 pets have been left behind and are now at risk of starving to death. As the World Health Organization confirmed there's no evidence that pet dogs or cats can be infected with the coronavirus, a number of animal welfare advocates are working to relay this information to the public and rescue abandoned animals. Continue reading below to learn more about these dire rescue efforts. -- Global Animal
(CHINESE MEDICINE/WILDLIFE TRADE) As the coronavirus continues to spread, more questions arise regarding the outbreak's cause and origin. A Chinese travel blogger is under fire after posting a viral video of her eating "bat soup," supposedly filmed in Wuhan. The Internet collectively slammed the video--originally filmed at a restaurant in Palau in 2016--blaming Wang Mengyun and bat-eaters alike, for their speculated culpability in spreading the virus. While the Huanan Seafood Market in Wuhan was originally believed to be the source of the coronavirus, or 2019-nCoV, a new study shows the early known victims had no contact with the market. And while the virus does seem to have originated in bats, it’s unclear how it made its way to humans. Read on to learn more about the debunked rumors. -- Global Animal
(HELP ANIMALS) Severe wildfires burning across Australia for months now have taken a tragic toll on it's iconic habitats that make the continent an ecological wonder. With nearly 18 million acres burned, experts estimate upwards of 1.25 billion animals--many of them unique to Australia--have been killed since the fires started in September. A number of animal rescue groups and volunteers are working overtime to help farm animals, pets, and wildlife, including koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, wombats, and more, who are so desperately in need of rescue and treatment. -- Global Animal
(SERVICE DOGS/VETERAN'S DAY) As we take this day to commemorate our honored vets, we should also take a moment to thank the service dogs who help these respected men and women. While many U.S. veterans struggle with invisible wounds such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression, some of them are able to find peace from their four-legged friends. One organization, Operation Freedom Paws, a nonprofit in Gilroy, California, is working to help veterans in need train their own service dogs. The VA has been studying the effectiveness of canine therapy for troops suffering from PTSD, however it was recently placed on hold in order to rewrite the study's parameters to take into account the dogs' temperaments and the importance of matching the trainers with the patients—not just the dogs. Read on to learn more about the organization's efforts as well as the benefits of dog interaction and check out the gallery below to see how service dogs help our veterans on a daily basis. — Global Animal
(ENDANGERED SPECIES) Animal advocates have filed a lawsuit forcing the federal government to protect endangered species. This move repeals recently imposed rules by the Trump administration that would put endangered species like manatees, bald eagles, gray wolves, and grizzly bears at risk of extinction. Read on to learn more about how the Animal Legal Defense Fund is fighting for the protections of some of the most vulnerable species on the planet--in both the wild and in captivity.
(ANIMAL CRUELTY) Believe it or not, most animal cruelty isn't currently a federal crime. Thankfully the U.S. House of Representatives just unanimously passed a bill to change that. Under the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act, or PACT Act, animal cruelty--including crushing, burning, drowning, suffocating, impaling, and other bodily injury--will be a federal felony. Existing federal law only explicitly bans animal fighting, and solely criminalizes the act of filming and distributing video depicting animal cruelty. Violators could face up to seven years in prison under the new law. Do you think that's a fair sentence? -- Global Animal
(LIONS/WILDLIFE CONSERVATION) Today, August 10 is World Lion Day! Celebrating the almightly King of the Jungle, this international holiday aims to raise awareness about the plight of lions and help save them from extinction. African lion numbers are dropping drastically as wealthy hunters pay tens of thousands of dollars to hunt these magnificent creatures. In July 2015, Cecil the lion was notoriously shot and killed by an American trophy hunter who paid a whopping $50,000 for the hunt. Almost exactly two years after the famed lion's death, one of Cecil's sons Xanda was also killed in similar circumstances during a trophy hunt last month. Lions have been under threat of poachers for centuries, and the killing of Xanda just demonstrates how trophy hunters have learned absolutely nothing from the international outcry following Cecil's death. These callous killers continue to poach even though there are as few as 20,000 African lions remaining in the wild. We must call on government officials and the tourism industry to take responsibility--join the global movement today. Continue reading below for reasons to love lions this World Lion Day. -- Global Animal
(OCEANS) Happy World Oceans Day! Originally created by The Ocean Project in 2002, World Oceans Day became nationally recognized as June 8 in 2008. Since then, the project has reached millions worldwide in advocating for healthier oceans and a healthier planet. There's no doubt that factors like climate change and pollution are threatening our Earth's oceans, but it's never too late to save them. Read on for ways to help save the oceans and reduce plastic pollution. -- Global Animal
(TURTLES/OCEAN CONSERVATION) Today, May 23 marks World Turtle Day! Effective since 2000, World Turtle Day is a time to celebrate turtles and tortoises, and bring awareness to their diminishing habitats. While sea turtles have been around for millions of years, all seven sea turtle species are currently classified as endangered, with some facing extinction. Activists are calling for better protection and conservation efforts, but unfortunately sea turtles face a number of threats, ranging from climate change to poaching. Read on for more facts about turtles and see how you can help conserve these beloved species. -- Global Animal