Those listening to KMXX 99.3 and KSEH 94.5 radio stations in California’s Imperial Valley – a majority of whose residents speak Spanish – are hearing a vital Public Service Announcement in that language six times each day: “In the U.S., 70,000 puppies and kittens are born every day … If you let your animal have a litter, even just one, these kittens and puppies will go on to produce more offspring – and very quickly, that adds up to many unwanted dogs and cats. Countless dogs and cats are killed in shelters each year because there is nowhere for them to go.”
Listeners are then advised to act responsibly by spaying and neutering their pets: “Your veterinarian or a low-cost clinic in your area can do the procedure. Fixed cats are less likely to get certain cancers and less likely to bite, fight, roam or run away.”
“So, for a healthier and happier pet and to help improve the pet overpopulation problem, make sure you get your animals fixed right away.”
Sponsored by the International Society for Animal Rights and Advancing the Interests of Animals, this Public Service Announcement (PSA) is currently being heard on radio stations serving Spanish-speaking audiences across the U.S. From WHAT 1340, Philadelphia’s top Spanish language radio station, to WPSP 1190 in Palm Beach, Florida, which provides programming for Hispanics ages 25 and up, to KGRW 94 in Amarillo, which is the largest city in the Texas Panhandle, these stations – and dozens more like them – are getting the word out on the necessity of spaying and neutering.
As a result of ISAR’s efforts countless pet owners are learning how a simple procedure, performed by their vet or at a low-cost clinic, can help animals by fighting the curse of overpopulation.
ISAR’s Spanish PSA – along with spay/neuter billboards in English and Spanish in 30 U.S. states Canada and Ireland – is another powerful tool in ISAR’s crusade to keep the issue of animal overpopulation in front of the public and educate them on how to combat it.
Remember, Saturday, August 19 is International Homeless Animals’ Day® (IHAD®). Over 100 events will take place in more than 40 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and 10 countries.
The August 8 Washington Post featured an article on IHAD and quoted ISAR President Susan Dapsis: “Children can participate in IHAD by walking shelter dogs, grooming shelter animals and spending time with them. This will bring much happiness to the animals and prepare them for their journey to a new home.”
The article highlighted the work of the Soi Dog Foundation in Phuket, Thailand, where many of its 500 dogs are socialized and transported to North America for adoption.
On Saturday, August 19, animal lovers around the world will mark International Homeless Animals’ Day® (IHAD®). The International Society for Animal Rights launched the event in 1992 to shed light on pet overpopulation and the spay/neuter solution. For 26 years, on the third Saturday of August, rescue organizations, animal protection organizations and concerned individuals have joined ISAR in a day of hearts and hands, help and hope.
Last year, thousands of people – often accompanied by their pets – held candlelight vigils and rallies, marched through the streets of their towns and held adoption and microchip and spay/neuter events in two dozen U.S. states, Canada, Mexico and countries in Central America, Europe, Africa and Asia. From Rhode Island, where a Defenders of Animals gathering paid tribute to humane heroes, including members of RI Canine Search and Rescue Team and Warwick Animal Hospital, to the Dominican Republic where Cat Lovers RD launched a humane education program with an emphasis on proper pet care that will be taught in schools, animal lovers joined hands and raised their voices on behalf of those who can’t speak for themselves.
The first and only worldwide event that addresses the need for accessible and affordable spay/neuter programs, IHAD has garnered more supporters each year. This year promises to be the biggest commemoration of all with events in numerous countries.
To see how the momentum is building, follow ISAR on Twitter, is_ar (@is_ar) or our Facebook: 2017 IHAD Event Page and see how almost every day brings a new commitment: In Penang, Malaysia, the SPCA will distribute subsidized neutering vouches to pet owners; in Fitchburg, West Virginia, Brown Paws Rescue will sponsor an adoption fair; a Pawlooza adoption event is taking place in London, Ontario, Canada; SOS Chats is spreading the word on spaying and neutering in Neuchatel, Switzerland; and Spay Panama is spaying/neutering 300 stray animals. And that’s just a sample of what IHAD 2017 will offer.
Please use your energy and empathy to mark International Homeless Animals’ Day with an event in your city for town. To learn more about the Day and how you can hold an event, please visit us at International Homeless Animals’ Day. You can also contact us by email at Contact@isaronline.org or call 570-586-2200.
That’s what the producers of a forthcoming feature-length documentary are aiming to do something about. Building their story around four devoted cat-rescuers, Steve Lawrence and Rob Fruchtman have tried to raise $50,000 for completion of their work-in-progress. After a lengthy conversation with them today, ISAR’s chairman and president—Professor Henry Mark Holzer and Susan Dapsis—put Lawrence and Fruchtman’s project over the top with a sizable contribution through Kickstarter. ISAR will continue our involvement as the film is finished and the distribution process moves forward. For further information, see http://catrescuersfilm.com/
We are pleased to announce that the Animal Rights Law Reporter, – founded
and edited by Professor Henry Mark Holzer, and published by International Society for Animal Rights – is now part of the online collection of the Animal Legal and Historical Center at Michigan State University College of Law.
The area of animal law as a distinct legal practice in the United States was conceived by
ISAR’s chairman, Professor Henry Mark Holzer in the 1970s. Since that beginning, the interest of lawyers, law schools and the legal profession in animal law has burgeoned.
Animal law did not exist as a separate legal specialty until 1973, when Henry Mark Holzer, filed the landmark lawsuit Jones v. Butz, which advocated for the animals’ interest in challenging an exception under the federal Humane Methods of Livestock Slaughter Act of 1958.
Professor Holzer’s lawsuit is credited with being the opening salvo in what is still the emerging field of animal law, which he actively promoted through outreach and by establishing a professional publication, the Animal Rights Law Reporter (ARLR).
The Animal Rights Law Reporter was published quarterly from 1980 – 1983. Each issue began with a segment entitled, “In the Courts,” which outlined significant court cases involving animals. The issues also contained a section for “In the Legislatures,” where recent animal-related legislation was discussed. “In the Legal Literature” gave updates on pertinent legal articles in the field. Finally, the Reporter provided a quarterly “Bulletin Board,” “Available Resources,” and “Editor’s Comment” from Professor Holzer.
The Animal Rights Law Reporter communicated developments in animal rights law, and kept its readers abreast of all current pending federal legislation which affected animal rights, as well as state legislation.
In the debut January 1980 issue of the Animal Rights Law Reporter, Professor Henry Mark Holzer commented:
“For this first issue, it seems most fitting to comment not so much on what appears, but on that it appears. No one reading the REPORTER needs to be told that, not long ago, the idea of animal rights law was viewed as absurd by all but a handful of people. Yet, in only the past few years, the idea has grown to the point where it is possible – indeed, necessary – to publish this Animal Rights Law Reporter. Consider fully the significance of being able to publish information about animal rights law in legal literature, in legislatures, and in courts. About the availability of legal pleadings, briefs, model laws – all in the cause of legal rights for animals.
Quite beyond the content of any specific piece of information in this, the first issue of the Animal Rights Law Reporter, its real accomplishment is that it has come into being. Hopefully, its existence signals a new chapter in the struggle for animal rights through law.”
You can read more about Professor Holzer’s vision for using the law on behalf of animals at ISAR’s blogspot.com – Another Milestone For Animal Rights Law.
Harnessing the power of education to protect animals has been part of ISAR’s mission since it was founded more than 50 years ago. And our dedication to achieving this goal is just as strong in 2017.
ISAR’s multi-pronged effort, which includes partnering with our friends at Advancing the Interests of Animals, to educate pet owners, the public and legislators about the curse of companion animal overpopulation, and how they can help eradicate it, includes Spay/Neuter billboards in English and Spanish in 29 states, Canada and Ireland (with more going up each month). Soon, Public Service Announcements in Spanish will be distributed to Spanish-speaking radio stations throughout the U.S.
And, as the Spanish Language Outreach Program continues to expand, ISAR has translated its mandatory Spay/Neuter and Microchipping Statutes into Spanish. We hope animal rights activists – individuals and organizations – in Spanish-speaking countries will use these to galvanize legislators into enacting laws that benefit dogs and cats.
The benefits of mandatory spay/neuter laws are evident: fewer animals born means fewer animals that are homeless, abandoned and reproducing from an early age. The connection between the microchipping of companion animals and the scourge of dog and cat overpopulation is not as obvious but just as vital: Aside from the sadness of a pet straying from home and becoming lost, an animal that is not microchipped may never be found and it, and its progeny, will reproduce over and over. ISAR urges that both cats and dogs be microchipped.
Because of the importance of ISAR’s anti-overpopulation mission, our Spay/Neuter and Microchipping Statutes were generously translated into Spanish by Patricia Chan, the founder of Spay Panama, which has been sterilizing homeless animals or those cared for by low-income individuals since 2001 in the Republic of Panama. We urge animal activists and advocacy organizations to contact their legislators to demand that mandatory spay/neuter and microchipping statutes be enacted.
For those of you who reside in a Spanish-speaking country or other location and share our desire to educate pet owners and the general public – and especially legislators – about the crisis of pet overpopulation, the spay/neuter solution, and the benefits of microchipping, please contact your legislators and help them to enact these statutes into law. And please let us know if you succeed. We will share your success with others to inspire them to act.
The statutes in Spanish can be found on isaronline.org under the “Programs” drop-down menu at the top of the page, and then select “Dog and Cat Overpopulation.” Then scroll down to “Model Statutes.” Or click the links below:
As ISAR’s Spanish Language Spay/Neuter Program continues to post visually arresting billboards in primarily Spanish speaking neighborhoods in the U.S., supporters in Pennsylvania, should keep an eye out in mid-March when Spay/Neuter billboards go up in the Lehigh Valley area. Educating the public with eye-catching Spanish language billboards is a 2017 priority.
ISAR’s billboards are a great way to advertise shelter events, spay/neuter clinics, or for simply sponsoring the spay/neuter message. If you or your organization are interested in participating in ISAR’s Spay/Neuter Billboard Campaign, email ISAR at http://isaronline.org/programs/animal-rights-education/billboards/.
“No Deje Que Esto Suceda. Esterilice a sus mascotas” (“Don’t let this happen: Sterilize your pets”) Thanks to ISAR, residents of two Fort Myers neighborhoods – Tropic Avenue and Kennesaw Street, which have a large percentage of Spanish speakers – are now being reminded, every day and in Spanish, of the stark fact of pet overpopulation and how they can combat this continuing evil.
At the beginning of January, two billboards with arresting images of multiple cats and dogs, the above message in Spanish and ISAR’s phone number were posted on these busy Florida thoroughfares. Viewed daily by thousands of motorists, residents, visitors and owners of companion animals, the Spanish language billboards are part of ISAR’s Spanish Language Spay/Neuter Program that concentrates on areas with influential numbers of Spanish-speakers.
The billboards in Fort Myers are the first of the Spanish Language Spay/Neuter Program. They expand the overall program that, in 2016, saw more than 80 visually striking billboards installed along busy highways throughout 29 U.S. states, Canada and Ireland.
In 2017, ISAR hopes to post as many Spanish Language Spay/Neuter billboards as possible in areas around the U.S. that offer low-cost spay/neuter programs. These are a powerful weapon in the fight against dog and cat overpopulation. Partnering with Advancing the Interests of Animals, ISAR is targeting the millions of individuals and families throughout the U.S. who own unspayed or un-neutered dogs and cats. Educating these groups with eye-catching Spanish language billboards is an ISAR 2017 priority.
In Lee County, where Fort Myers is located, 18 percent of the population speaks Spanish, but the impact of Spanish language billboards becomes clear as 86 percent of Hispanics in the Naples-Fort Myers market speak Spanish at home. Advertising to them in Spanish is 55 percent more effective, and 4.4 times more persuasive than English, according to The Pew Hispanic Center.
If you live in Los Angeles, be sure to drive by ISAR’s Spanish-language Spay/Neuter billboards that, as of February 13, will be featured at the intersection of Beverly Boulevard and Atlantic Boulevard and on Slauson Avenue in the Holmes Avenue neighborhood.
North of L.A., in Fresno, a Spanish language billboard will go up on February 13 in the vicinity of East Kings Canyon Road and South Dearing Avenue with another one posted on Grant Avenue. The latter will be visible in a neighborhood where 75 percent of the residents identify their ethnicity or ancestry as Mexican and more than 50 percent of households speak Spanish.
And stay tuned, as ISAR makes its mark with Spanish language billboards in Philadelphia this spring.
The Spanish Language Spay/Neuter Program is multifaceted: ISAR’s Public Service Announcements championing the fight against pet overpopulation are currently being rewritten and translated into Spanish. These will be distributed to hundreds of Spanish-speaking radio stations throughout Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas.
In addition, ISAR is translating its model mandatory spay/neuter and related statutes into Spanish so that individuals and organizations advocating animal protection in Spanish-speaking countries abroad may use them as a basis for proposing legislation.
So as ISAR embarks on another year dedicated to using education and law to advance animal rights, a heartfelt Feliz año nuevo and Happy New Year to our supporters and those working to make dog and cat overpopulation a distant memory.
ISAR’s billboards are a great way to advertise shelter events, spay/neuter clinics, or for simply sponsoring the spay/neuter message. If you or your organization are interested in participating in ISAR’s Spay/Neuter Billboard Campaign, email ISAR at http://isaronline.org/programs/animal-rights-education/billboards/.
Since ISAR’s founding in 1959 it has not wavered in our commitment to improving the lives of animals through legal, legislative and educational efforts. The latter, public education about animal rights, both theoretical and practical, has long been a primary activity of ISAR, and will continue to be an important part of our programs. For instance:
Joining ISAR’s other efforts against dog and cat overpopulation is our new “Spanish Language Spay/Neuter Program.” Through it—and partnering with our friends at Advancing the Interests of Animals— ISAR expects to reach the countless individuals and families throughout the United States who are custodians of intact dogs and cats. At present, our program consists of four elements.
First, we will be enlarging our existing outdoor advertising program by designing and then installing in selected venues throughout the United States custom-designed, eye-catching Spanish language billboards carrying ISAR’s companion animal overpopulation and spay/neuter solution messages. Our billboard placements will emphasize installation in population centers where there are considerable numbers of Spanish- speaking men and women living and working.
Second, again in partnership with Advancing the Interests of Animals, we are broadening our current Public Service Announcement program, which in the past has been supported by celebrities such as the late Steve Allen and the animals’ long-time champion Bob Barker, to reach listeners of Spanish-speaking radio stations in such states as Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas. Our scripts are being rewritten, and will be distributed as Public Service Announcements to hundreds of radio stations with a predominantly Spanish- speaking audience.
Third, sometime in 2017 we will be expanding our new Spanish Language Outreach Program outside our borders to the many nations throughout the world where that language is spoken.
Fourth, ISAR is translating all of its model spay/neuter and related statutes into Spanish, and will make them available to animal protection individuals and organizations in Spanish-speaking venues with request that they be enacted into law.
With our new program, we hope to spread the message here and abroad that companion animal overpopulation is a curse, and that a powerful weapon against it is spay/neuter.
As part of ISAR’s initiative to increase our audience and raise awareness about the perils of pet overpopulation and its spay/neuter solution, ISAR has been diligently working with outdoor marketing companies around the globe to expand our spay/neuter educational reach.
Using one of the most efficient means of advertising, this year alone close to 100 of ISAR’s brightly-colored spay/neuter billboards have been installed along busy highways
and roadways, and on the sides of buildings, throughout the U.S. and abroad. In 2016, ISAR has posted our striking billboards in locations throughout Indiana, South Carolina, Tennessee,Oklahoma, California, Florida, Alabama, Virginia, West Virginia, Arkansas, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Rhode Island, Michigan, Arizona, Washington, Wyoming, Nevada, across the border in Canada, and overseas in Ireland. Photos of ISAR’s billboards that have been installed can be found on our website, www.isaronline.org, under the “gallery” tab.
In ISAR’s Summer 2016 Newsletter we mentioned that ISAR’s billboards have received a positive response from people who have encountered them. Most recently, Linda C., Montana, thanked ISAR for our public service campaign. She went on to say, “Thank you for posting spay/neuter banners in our area. Life Savers Animal Rescue has an aggressive spay/neuter program and appreciates any and all support.” We are happy to help!
ISAR’s billboards are a great way to advertise shelter events, spay/neuter clinics, or for simply sponsoring the spay/neuter message. If you or your organization are interested in participating in ISAR’s Spay/Neuter Billboard Campaign, email ISAR at firstname.lastname@example.org today!
ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day® (IHAD®) 2016 was commemorated for the twenty-fifth consecutive year on August 20th in more than 22 U.S. states, Canada, and numerous foreign locations including several places throughout Africa and South Africa, Dominican Republic, France, Malaysia, Mexico, Panama, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.
Since 1992, on the third Saturday of August, ISAR has commemorated International Homeless Animals’ Day in an effort to shed light on the pet overpopulation epidemic that affects people and communities on a global scale. Spay/neuter, the theme of the Day, is a proven solution that greatly reduces the numbers of unwanted cats, dogs, puppies and kittens running rampant in the streets and clogging shelter systems, ultimately resulting in mass killings simply because there are not enough good homes for those animals.
Dedicated rescues, animal protection organizations, and concerned individuals band together with ISAR on the third Saturday of August each year to raise a collective voice for the animals. Time and again, poignant vigils light the night in solidarity, such as the Defenders of Animals International Homeless Animals’ Day observance in Rhode Island this year. The young and old gathered to pay homage to individuals and organizations whose service to animals often times goes unnoticed.
A ceremony of gratitude at Defenders of Animals 2016 event paid tribute to humane heroes, including members of RI Canine Search and Rescue Team, Warwick Animal Hospital, a news anchor of NBC 10 in Providence, a local rescue, and others, were handed personalized plaques honoring their tireless efforts. During an interview with The Cranston Herald, Dennis Tabella, Director of Defenders of Animals, was quoted as saying, “We have always believed in this credo: The smaller the victim, the bigger the crime. I have always taken the side of the underdog, and there is no greater underdog than the dogs and cats that are waiting for homes at our shelters or those poor souls that walk the streets and throughout our neighborhoods without the love and security from a human being.” Defenders of Animals commemorated their 20th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day observance in 2016.
ISAR’s IHAD is often utilized as a perfect time to launch new spay/neuter-related programs and campaigns to bring about positive change for animals. Asociación Nacional Protectora de Animales Costa Rica and Cat Lovers RD launched a Spanish language humane education program with a basis on proper pet care to be installed in various schools throughout nearby Samaná in the Dominican Republic on International Homeless Animals’ Day.
Excited and hopeful about this new humane education program, Isabel Gorski-Grobe, associated with Cat Lovers RD proclaimed, “Teaching local people wherever they are that the love for animals does a lot to prevent homeless animals and cuts down the need to re-home outside the country.” During the week leading up to IHAD, Cat Lovers RD along with the Association for Aid and Support of the Creole Dogs, performed more than 190 spay surgeries, preventing untold thousands of unwanted animals from being born.
Rainy weather didn’t put a damper on SOS Chats 11th annual IHAD observance in Neuchâtel, Switzerland. With more than 300 people in attendance, including local politicians, members of animal rescue groups, artists, musicians, and others, SOS Chats hosted an information stall promoting spay/neuter. Each year, SOS Chats utilizes IHAD as a platform for gathering many signatures for their ongoing petition campaign supporting an amendment to a current law that would prohibit the practice of hunting feral cats as a means of “population control” in Switzerland. To date, SOS Chats has collected thousands of signatures.
Uber (a taxi-hailing application that connects riders to drivers via smartphones) and street dog rescue, Embark, took an unconventional approach in commemorating IHAD this year in Sri Lanka. People in Colombo, Sri Lanka’s capital, were offered the opportunity to choose UberPUPPIES, a selection within the app that offered participants a 15-minute visit with an adoptable puppy accompanied by an Embark representative. People from various businesses and homes took part in this initiative while learning about the need for pet adoption and to volunteer at local rescues. As a result, several puppies were adopted into loving new homes.
ISAR sincerely thanks all humane-minded elected officials who have taken the opportunity to encourage their citizens to act responsibly by having their pets spay/neutered. ISAR is especially grateful to the Virgin Islands Governor, Kenneth Mapp, for proclaiming Saturday, August 20, 2016, as International Homeless Animals’ Day. ISAR would also like to send a heartfelt thank-you to Mayor John A. Miller of Fernandina Beach, Florida, for presenting Cats Angels Inc. SPCA with a signed proclamation not only declaring August 20th as International Homeless Animals’ Day, but all of August 2016 as International Homeless Animals’ Month. In California, several animal protection organizations were presented with signed proclamations from Mayor William R. Bailey and Councilmember Mike Gardner declaring August 20, 2016, as International Homeless Animals’ Day in Riverside County. We ask our dedicated IHAD event planners to encourage elected officials who have not yet acknowledged the problem of pet overpopulation and the importance of spay/neuter, to take a stand alongside ISAR and sign our proclamation!
Thank you to all news media, tv and radio personalities, bloggers, and concerned individuals who provided a great service to animals in honor of IHAD 2016 by promoting the adopt-a-thons, spay/neuter clinics, candlelight vigils, and other events taking place all around the globe. ISAR is grateful to all of you who took to social media supporting ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day campaign, including actress, producer, and animal advocate, Katherine Heigl, whose post about International Homeless Animals’ Day garnered more than 32,000 likes and shares over several online platforms. International Homeless Animals’ Day would not have the global outreach it needs to continue to make a positive difference in the lives of companion animals if it weren’t for our dedicated and driven coordinators and supporters.
Please join us in commemorating ISAR’s 26th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day!
ISAR extends a warm invitation to all of our veteran event coordinators, as well as to a host of new ones, to join us on Saturday, August 19, 2017, in commemorating ISAR’s 26th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day. Please contact ISAR by mail, phone, fax, or email to receive an IHAD 2017 planning packet.
Together we will continue to be a voice for the animals and continue to demand an end to the suffering and exploitation inflicted on animals each day.
As ISAR’s supporters know, we engage in extensive public education, including the creation and dissemination of monographs and other material dealing with animal rights: Newsletters, interviews, billboards, observances, seminars, blogs, websites, speeches, courses, articles, reports, memoranda, radio shows, and public service announcements.
This summer, in furtherance of ISAR’s mission to use law and legislation to protect and advance animal rights, ISAR filed a “friend-of-the-court” brief in the Supreme Court of the United States urging that body to accept a First Amendment case whose outcome will affect the wellbeing of animals.
A Texas statute suppresses the pure speech of veterinarians, and thus constitutes a grave danger to animals.
You can read the entire brief submitted by ISAR to the Supreme Court of the United States on our website.
For further information regarding this particular case, our friends at Animals Today Radio conducted an interview with Institute for Justice lawyer, Rob Peccola. To listen to this interview please visit the Animals Today Radio website, www.animalstodayradio.com. (See August 22, 2015 session “Adventures in cruelty free shopping. Will a Texas radio Veterinarian get shut down? Dog and cat vaccinations – all you need to know.” Interview with Attorney Peccola begins at the 15:00 mark.)
A Parked Car Could Kill Your Dog
In ISAR’s Summer 2015 report, we informed our supporters of the dangers of leaving pets, most often dogs, in a parked car especially during the warmer months. To raise public awareness, ISAR created an eye-catching billboard with the slogan, A Parked Car Could Kill Your Dog. During the summer months, be kind to your dog. Leave him at home. ISAR’s striking new billboards were posted near busy shopping districts in Pennsylvania during the months of June and July to educate people against this dangerous practice.
ISAR received several requests for our “A Parked Car Could Kill Your Dog” information cards. One such request came from Officer Bryant of the Montgomery Humane Society Humane Officer Division in Alabama who planned to distribute the cards to Deputy Humane Officers and circulate them throughout their community. In his letter to ISAR, Officer Bryant said, “We serve a population of approximately 300,000 citizens and each year we have hundreds of reports of dogs being locked in cars. Your consideration in this matter is greatly appreciated and we thank you for offering these cards to shelters.” ISAR gladly sent hundreds of cards for distribution. Anyone who wants more should contact ISAR by mail, phone, fax or email.
International Homeless Animals’ Day® 2015
International Homeless Animals’ Day® (IHAD®) 2015 was commemorated for the twenty-fourth consecutive year on August 15th with observances in more than 35 U.S. states, Canada and involvement in numerous foreign locations including Australia, Belize, Cuba, France, Malaysia, Mexico, Panama, South Africa, and Switzerland.
Since 1992, ISAR has reserved the third Saturday of August as a platform for thousands of dedicated, humane-minded people to come together in solidarity to enlighten the public about a tragedy that affects all communities, cat and dog overpopulation and its simple solution: spay/neuter. IHAD is often marked with candlelight vigils, blessing of the animals ceremonies, spay/neuter clinics, adopt-a-thons, animal shelter open houses, microchip clinics, marches, speeches given by veterinarians, humane officers, and shelter personnel, and much more.
Twenty-four years since its inception, International Homeless Animals’ Day continues to grow and has helped pave the way bringing pet overpopulation to the forefront while opening doors for others who promote spay/neuter days, clearing shelters of adoptable animals into loving new homes, and remembering companion animals who are placed in shelters or left to fend for themselves on the streets through no fault of their own.
Citing a new trend, more humane organizations are taking International Homeless Animals’ Day to the next level by not only commemorating the Day itself, but coincide their spay/neuter/adoption outreach all month long.
Last year, ISAR highlighted an IHAD event hosted by Spay/Panama in our Autumn 2014 newsletter. We reported nearly 500 cats and dogs were spayed/neutered in honor of International Homeless Animals’ Day in Panama City. This year, ISAR is proud to inform our readers that Spay/Panama has since expanded their IHAD spay/neuter efforts and significantly increased their dog and cat sterilizations to 2,125.
Here, verbatim, is the report submitted by Patricia Chan, Founder of Spay/Panama of what happened there in honor of International Homeless Animals’ Day 2015:
Panama, like many other Latin-American country has an enormous problem with homeless animals. We dedicated the whole month of August to bring awareness to the plight of Homeless Animals. For 2015 IHAD, we joined forces with the Mayor’s Office of Panama District, Fundacion Rayos de Fe y Esperanza, with the local authorities and schools in Burunga and Alcalde Diaz, the residents of several communities, Spay/Mexico and Dr. Marvin Mackie, creator of the Quick Spay Method to:
All these activities touched the lives of countless guardians, rescuers, students, professionals, and animals. The people reached through the radio and tv interviews cannot be measured and over 100 people attended the conference on No More Animals Suffering in the Streets. The major spay events had a great impact on two communities, Alcalde Diaz and Burunga. The people that live in these two communities are low-income and cannot afford to spay/neuter their animals in a veterinary clinic, yet they are aware of the life changing benefits of sterilizing their pets. They formed long lines before we set up and in these two communities we treated 1,348 animals.
We were pleasantly surprised that the Mayor Jose Blandon attended the conference No More Animals Suffering in the Streets and gave the welcome note. More so with the local authority Jose Gonzalez Medina from Burunga that understood the need for low-cost massive spay events and is already asking for another spay campaign. This would be unheard of, sometime ago.
At the Escuela Union Panamericana in Alcalde Diaz and Escuela Lucas Barcenas in Burunga, the children were attentive to the talks of humane treatment of animals and were the ones responsible for making their families take their pets to the spay campaigns.
Because we met with the veterinarians in the Chitre area, we will begin training two vets on September 20.At the Escuela Union Panamericana in Alcalde Diaz and Escuela Lucas Barcenas in Burunga, the children were attentive to the talks of humane treatment of animals and were the ones responsible for making their families take their pets to the spay campaigns.
The 50 senior vet students that watched the two surgeries using the Quick Spay Method were eager and focused to learn.
This year, IHAD received participation from many new organizations including several in South Africa. For instance, Animal Allies in Johannesburg held an IHAD Vaccination Day, Spay/Neuter Clinic and Spay/Neuter Educational Campaign vaccinating, de-worming, and flea-treating more than 200 cats and dogs. When asked about their IHAD experience, Karen Chitongo, Manager of Animal Allies, had this to say, “We had a hectic but wonderful day where we saw 200 dogs and about 15 cats. We made a list of all those animals that were not sterilized. To date we have sterilized all the cats and each week did 10 dogs, which comes to 42 so far. We will continue with the sterilizations. The community had a positive reaction towards the day. They do not have means of transport and were very happy that we were helping them at no cost to them. We explained that having their pets sterilized reduces the overpopulation of so many unwanted puppies and kittens. We also explained that fighting amongst unsterilized males is also reduced as well as infections and disease. The animal guardians understood and agreed to have their animals sterilized.”
Thanks to the Edenglen Primary School in Edenvale, South Africa, funds were raised while food and supplies were collected in honor of International Homeless Animals’ Day for Paws R Us. Speeches from a local K9 Conservation Unit and several members from Paws R Us educated hundreds of students about the importance their work plays in helping animals. Excited for the opportunity to talk the students about animal issues, Ms. Chantelle Murray, Paws R Us Director, said, “Informing the children of today is beneficial because they are our future society.” We couldn’t agree more!
Even with a modest budget, The Placencia Humane Society, Belize joined ISAR for International Homeless Animals’ Day and offered a free spay/neuter clinic, fixing multiple dogs and cats as a result.
ISAR can attest that International Homeless Animals’ Day events are making a positive difference in the lives of animals as well as people!
ISAR is extremely grateful to all elected officials who have taken initiative to recognize International Homeless Animals’ Day 2015. Special thanks to Pennsylvania Governor, Tom Wolf and Fernandina Beach (FL) Mayor, Ed Boner for shedding light on pet overpopulation and the spay/neuter solution by signing International Homeless Animals’ Day Proclamations.
ISAR would like to sincerely thank all media and individuals who helped ISAR promote its 24th annual IHAD observances through the many advertising outlets including radio and television interviews, newspaper articles, blogs, social networking, YouTube, websites, and much more! ISAR is extremely grateful to all vigil coordinators who generously donate their time, efforts and resources each year bringing awareness of the horrific results of dog and cat overpopulation to the forefront by promoting its important and simple solution: spay/neuter. ISAR strives to one day eliminate the pet overpopulation epidemic but we cannot succeed without the great efforts of our vigil coordinators. Thank you!
Because ISAR is the only national organization dedicated solely to working for the day when every dog and cat born will have a permanent loving home – and when our companion animals will be “companions,” not disposable objects left along roadways or abandoned to shelters – it is imperative that we continue our relentless pursuit to educate people of all nations to the pet overpopulation crisis and the spay/neuter solution.
Susan Dapsis, President