GlobalAnimal.org's POLITICS section covers animal laws and animal welfare legislation in governments worldwide.

Whale Woes: Iceland Targets Endangered Whales

(WHALES/ENDANGERED SPECIES) Iceland has started to hunt fin whales once again with the summer quota allowing for the deaths of up to 184 whales. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature has listed the species as endangered and animal rights activists around the globe are not happy with Iceland's decision. Supporters argue that whaling is part of Iceland's culture. However, most of the meat will be exported to Japan and according to the Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), it is mostly consumed by tourists in Iceland. Read on for more details on Iceland's whaling debate. — Global Animal

Mayor Cat Clings To Life

(PETS/POLITICS) The life of a political animal is extremely stressful and cutthroat, with competitors looking to take you down at every turn. Talkeetna, Alaska’s honorary mayor, Stubbs the cat, had to learn this the hard way. On Saturday night, the feline mayor was attacked by a dog near Denali National Park, leaving Stubbs with a fractured sternum and punctured lung. Unfortunately for the unidentified dog, crimes against a political figure are serious business. After several hours of surgery, he is currently recuperating at a veterinarian’s office in Wasilla. We hope Stubbs makes a full recovery, and wish him well. Read on to learn more about the political feline. — Global Animal 


PETA Pushes India To Ban Animal Testing

(ANIMAL TESTING) INDIA — PETA is once again making progress towards removing animal testing in India. On the heels of a successful campaign to eliminate cosmetics testing on animals, PETA India is pushing for the abolishment of animal testing for household products as well. The ban will call for an end to the last remaining animal test which is currently conducted on guinea pigs. The proposal has strong support not only from PETA but from local politicians and advocacy groups. Read on for more information on the status of animal testing in India. — Global Animal  

Obama Barks Back at Breed-Specific Laws

(DOGS/PETS) What a great week to be a dog in Washington! In addition to the White House's welcoming of a new, one-year-old puppy named Sunny on Monday, President Obama has also come out in support of legislation which would allow pet parents to choose whichever dog they desire, regardless of breed. This statement comes in response to a petition signed by 30,000 dog lovers against breed-specific legislation—regulations that restrict ownership of dogs of certain breeds, with pit bulls being the most targeted. Read on for more information regarding Obama's stance on the issue as well as the importance of equality for all dog breeds. — Global Animal

Proposed Rat Poison Ban Protects Pets and Wildlife

(WILDLIFE/ANIMAL CONSERVATION) California may be pulling the plug on "super" rat poisons. Proposed regulation action, DPR 13-002, would ban the widespread use of dangerously strong anticoagulant rodent poisons. The ban would designate brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difenacoum, and difethialone as restricted materials, limiting them to those who are licensed and have training to use them appropriately. If the action passes, the poisons will no longer be available to the public. Homeowners are currently the number one users of these rodenticides, often misusing them and negatively affecting local wildlife and pets. Read on to learn more about how rodenticides are affecting our environment and sign the linked petitions to show your support for banning these toxic poisons. — Global Animal

Get the Lead Out! California Condors Caught in Crossfire

(WILDLIFE/ANIMAL CONSERVATION) The battle in Sacramento to pass Assembly Bill  711, which would ban the use of lead ammunition in California, is catching the state's condors in the crossfire. The Humane Society, Audubon California and Defenders of Wildlife are pushing to make California the first state to ban lead bullets. The organizations support the adoption of Assembly Bill 711 because lead ammunition is devastating to animal life, especially scavengers like the condor. Read on...

Animal Abusers Let Off the Hook

(ANIMAL LAWS) MICHIGAN — A recent bill that would require animal shelters in Michigan to perform background checks on potential adoptive caregivers has been rejected on the basis of funding and other concerns. The legislation, which would have been the first of its kind, would also order judges to prohibit animal abusers from having pets for five years after conviction. Supporters of the bill are continuing to work on getting such a policy approved. Read on to learn more about the proposed legislation. — Global Animal

‘Pura Vida’ Possible For Costa Rica’s Zoo Animals

(ZOOS) COSTA RICA — Spanish for "pure life," Pura Vida prevailed in Costa Rica after the country recently announced the planned closing of two public zoos. If Costa Rica’s plans hold, 400 zoo animals will have their freedom sometime in the next year. Continue reading below to see what future the zoo animals have in store. — Global Animal

Judge Holds The Reins On Horse Slaughter

(POLITICS) In a move stopping what would have been the first horse slaughterhouse plants in the U.S. in nearly seven years, a federal judge has halted plans for a New Mexico company and an Iowa company to open their facilities on Monday. Naturally, there are proponents on both sides of the argument, but opposing groups claim federal officials failed to consider certain environmental hazards when the Department of Agriculture issued permits to Valley Meat Company and Responsible Transportation last June. Read on for more on the judge's ruling and learn the details of Monday's scheduled hearing. — Global Animal

Animal Laws Every UK Pet Parent Should Know

(PET CARE) Though we hate to say it, dog attacks are an unfortunate reality in many parts of the world. Dog attacks are not only problematic for the victims, but for the animals' companions as well. In places like the United Kingdom, there are a number of important laws in place to protect citizens, but it's also the responsibility of animal caretakers to familiarize themselves with these laws. Read the article below to learn about the controversial Dangerous Dogs Act of 1991—a product of breed discrimination—as well as the Animals Act of 1971. There's no doubt citizens are torn over some of these laws, so we encourage you to share your thoughts in the comments below. — Global Animal

Colorado dairy farm is being investigated for it's cruelty towards calves.

Activists Unite Against Utah Ag-Gag

(FARM) Animal activists have filed a lawsuit trying to overturn ag-gag legislation in Utah which currently makes it illegal to record sights or sounds that expose farming operations. Critics of the policy point out that undercover investigation of factory farms has resulted in a lot of progress with animal welfare issues. It is our constitutional right to know and share information about animals' living conditions and instances of cruelty in the animal food industry. Read on to learn more about the debate revolving around ag-gag legislation in Utah. — Global Animal

EU Slices Loopholes In Shark Finning Ban

(SHARK FINNING) Shark finning is gone for good in the European Union. Legislation banned the barbaric activity back in 2003, but loopholes have allowed shark finning to continue under certain circumstances. The popularity of shark fin products has been steadily declining as of late, even in China, a country whose traditions once revolved around the consumption of shark fin soup. Continue reading below to find out what pushed the EU’s decision forward. — Global Animal

Vote For Gato: Mayor Cat Makes Change In Mexico

(CATS) If you live in Mexico and you're tired of voting for politicians who may not necessarily have your best interest in mind, you're in luck because a new breed of candidate is on the rise. The residents of Xalapa are using Morris, an 11-month-old black and white cat, to vent their frustrations about the current political situation. Morris is running for mayor with the slogan: “Tired of Voting for Rats? Vote for a Cat.” It seems Morris is already achieving good things for the city as the donations to his campaign are being rerouted to animal charities. Read on to find out more about this adorable kitty candidate. — Global Animal

Obama Goes To War With Wildlife Traffickers

(WILDLIFE) UNITED STATES — Just a week after the tragic news of the Western Black Rhino's extinction due to illegal poaching, President Obama has issued an executive order to protect our sacred wildlife. Obama announced, "The survival of protected wildlife species such as elephants, rhinos, great apes, tigers, sharks, tuna, and turtles has beneficial economic, social, and environmental impacts that are important to all nations. Wildlife trafficking reduces those benefits while generating billions of dollars in illicit revenues each year, contributing to the illegal economy, fueling instability, and undermining security." The order promises to contribute $10 million to help combat illegal poaching. Read on for more details on the President's exciting proposal. — Global Animal