Category: animal welfare

Taking carriage horses off Chicago's streets is an idea whose time has come

If you’re like me, your heart has ached witnessing horses hauling carriages down congested Mag Mile area streets in the brutal cold of a Chicago winter night, or the scorching heat of summer, and you’ve felt helpless to do anything for these creatures. On Wednesday, September 12, at 11 a.m., the Chicago City Council Committee... Read more »

Illinois Good Samaritan bill would let citizens rescue pets from hot cars

Q&A with Marc Ayers, Humane Society of the U.S. Illinois State Director Every summer brings with it the heartbreaking and all too common reports of infants and pets perishing inside hot vehicles. Thirteen states have passed “Good Samaritan” laws that allow citizens to break into a locked vehicle if they witness an animal inside that appears... Read more »

What new Fox Sports analyst Michael Vick really did

Fox Sports announced August 27 that it has hired former NFL quarterback Michael Vick as a studio analyst for its NFL Kickoff program that immediately precedes NFL Sunday on the Fox network. The news release announcing the hire was hilarious in the way it avoided the elephant in the room; namely, Vick’s 2007 felony conviction... Read more »
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News Media Wallows in Wrong-Headed Nostalgia for Ringling Bros.

I wasn’t planning on writing another post about the demise of Ringling Bros., which had its final circus performance over the weekend. Let them go quietly, was my way of thinking. Unfortunately, but predictably, it wasn’t the news media’s way of thinking. In journalism school, one of the first things you’re taught is the importance... Read more »

Senate resolution would permit horrific hunting practices on Alaskan refuges

For reasons I will explain, this post is directed more toward readers who live outside of Illinois, but if you have friends or family who live out of state who care about animals and wildlife, please read on and share this with them! There is a resolution working its way through the Senate, that could... Read more »

How 'Secret Life of Pets' Helped Me Understand My Cat's Distress

It’s funny how the most seemingly insignificant things like animated movies can give you an “A-ha” moment. I recently saw “The Secret Life of Pets,” a cute movie about urban pets of all kinds and the adventures they get themselves into when their owners are at work. It centers around a contented little terrier named... Read more »
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'A Dog's Purpose' Deserves a Chance Despite Controversy

Two recent pet-related films gave me the inspiration for a post. But since covering them both in one would make it way too long, I’m going to break them up over two.  One is “A Dog’s Purpose” and the next one is “The Secret Life of Pets.” I have not seen A Dog’s Purpose. By... Read more »

Ringling Doomed Itself by Failing To Adapt to Changing Times and Trends

  Ringling Bros. dropped a bombshell this past weekend when it announced it was permanently shutting down its Greatest Show on Earth after 146 years, due to declining circus attendance and revenue. As someone who has been a critic of the organization and even demonstrated outside their circuses, I was surprised at my initial reaction... Read more »

The Tragic Life of Killer Whale Tilikum Is a Lesson

Another celebrity death has made the news, although this one may pass under most people’s radar. Tilikum, the infamous and beleaguered killer whale kept captive for 25 years at SeaWorld Orlando, died yesterday at the age of 36 of what is being reported as a lung infection. The media headlines seemed to be announcing the... Read more »
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Ringling Retired Its Elephants, But Big Cats Still Suffer Under Its Big Tent

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is back at the United Center for another Thanksgiving season in Chicago, with “Out of this World.” You may remember that early last year, Ringling announced that after more than a century, it was ending its live elephant act and retiring the long-suffering beasts to sanctuaries beginning in... Read more »