Today was a great day to play with all the dogs at the Zhonghe shelter!
Thanks to all the TSPCA volunteers who came out to give the many dogs in need love, care and attention.
Government shelters are often understaffed and underfunded, which sadly affects the welfare of all the animals forced to stay in shelters.
Please adopt, don't shop- and consider adopting from a public shelter or NGO.
Adoption pictures and info:
GoGo Happy Life Fan Page for Zhonghe and Xindian Shelter pictures of adoptable animals：
Public Shelters Adoption Website：http://animal-adoption.coa.gov.tw/
Shelter Addresses/Opening Hours：http://www.spca.org.tw/30456383643689932080-links.html
“Adopt, don’t shop” has been a well-known slogan for a long time, but thanks to the movie “twelve nights”, which garnered national attention, the slogan “adopt, don’t shop” has become very trendy and a must-use for animal lovers. But, other than popularizing it, one must examine why animals should be adopted rather than being bought. Because it’s cheaper? Because it’s considered more kind-hearted? Because it’s trendy?
The answer to this question is worth thinking over. To animal lovers, every animal is a sentient being whose life matters. Not only does it apply to pedigrees but to all breeds, including mixed breeds. But, there is a myth about pedigree dogs that must be addressed. Of course, those pedigree puppies seen in pet store windows are adorable and they do draw in crowds to ogle over them. But it’s what you don’t see behind that pet store window that it what is of grave concern.
We usually equate pedigrees with high prices, a condition which reflects the mentality of human beings who see animals as material objects. Once behind the store window, these animals have become objects, likened to that of a moving doll, just waiting for a price tag to be put on their heads. In order to “produce” these fine products with the lowest cost, breeding facilities need to ensure a steady stream is available at a high profit to them. Thus the illegal puppy mill is born, a place that is like hell on earth, devoid of any welfare for the animals forced to live there.
Ask yourself this, why is it that pet stores only sell cute baby dogs and cats? And, if they aren’t sold once they grow up, where do they go? Most commonly there are 3 options for a pet store puppy that no one has bought.
1. To be abandoned on the streets
2. To be taken to a public shelter
3. To be returned to the puppy mill where they were born and
start reproducing for the rest of their lives just like their parents. In order to keep their profits high, puppy mill dogs are kept in very small spaces, forced to reproduce as young as possible and as often as possible. Taiwan’s Animal Protection Act states that breeders can only allow their bitches to start breeding after the dog is a year old, and they can only breed 3 times within 2 years. Furthermore a female pedigree must not breed more than 7 times within a lifetime. Sadly most bitches in illegal puppy mills normally start breeding around 6 months old, non stop until they are no longer physically able to produce. It is estimated that a bitch will only have 3-4 months of gestation and nursing period and will produce a litter of 5-10 puppies every 3-4 months. If a breeder sells each puppy for 5000nt each, he could be making a net profit of 200,000nt a year per bitch. Despite exremely high profits, the illegal puppy mills still don’t provide large spaces and comfortable environments for the animals in their care. Puppy mills are a business not involved in animals or animal welfare, but purely concerned about profits.
This business model is based solely on supply and demand, thus animal welfare organisations around the world strongly urge the public to help put an end to the need for cruel puppy mills and adopt instead of buying pets. Even though many pet shops look great on the outside, it can be hard to identify the souce of the animals they sell, due to loopholes in the law. Many pet shops disguise themselves as legal pet stores, however they are actually the breeding facilities themlselves. This way they can efficiently lower their costs and increase their profits.
Currently, there is no law that requires the pet shops or breeding facilities to make sure there is a clear adoption plan for animals that aren’t sold. Therefore, animals who don’t have a commercial value, can be discarded in whichever way the boss sees fit. Those abandoned animals have not only suffered serious damage to their organs from years of reproduction, but also can have serious diseases that will affect them for the rest of their lives and some are even near death. Those who are lucky to have survived, could also suffer from serious behavioural problems due to the life lived soley inside a wire cage. Sadly, some can’t even walk due to being caged for their whole lives. Unfortunately, these dogs require a large amount of care and patience to help then with the rehabilitation process.
Now think back to those cute little puppies in the beautiful windows of pet stores, they don’t seem so innocent now do they? In fact, their short lives are surrounded by abuse, neglect and sadness. Their moms and dads could still be living in hellish conditions in illegal puppy mills. As long as the myth about pedigree dogs exists, illegal puppy mills will continue to exist.
Currently, Taiwan’s Animal Protection Act only governs breeding facility for dogs, every other animal sadly has been over looked. Because of insuffience laws, it becomes nearly impossible to fine pet stores and properly manage breeders. Once again, the stress must be put on that this is a supply and demand industry, once the demand stops, so will the supply. Many of the dogs that come out of puppy mills will have hereditary genetic problems due to inbreeding, thus adopting dogs can stop the cycle of hereditary congenital diseases as well as reduce the number of homeless animals. Another commonly forgotten trait of mixed breeds is their originality, you can be sure yours will be unique, the only one in the world. Not to mention, mixed breeds are generally much healthier than pedigrees and don’t have the array of genetic diseases associated with pure breeds.
Together, we can put a stop to the puppy mill; adopt, don’t shop!
This morning Taiwan SPCA staff visited Legislator Shei-Saint Chen to personally thank him for being a strong voice for animals and aiding in the passing of the new amendments to Taiwan's Animal Protection Act.
In this coming year, we will continue to work tirelessly to protect even more animals in Taiwan and continue to lobby the government for legislative amendments.
Huge thank you to Legislator Chen's Office for all your hard work and support!
The TSPCA Education department has had a busy week!
We were very happy to meet with over 100 students from Hess English School and HouPu Elementary School and share our animal welfare knowledge! All the students were very excited to learn about animals and had lots of great questions for our animal welfare teachers!
1. The passing of legislation is crucial for Taiwan and the Taiwanese market. Only once legislation has passed, will the market demand for alternative methods increase (the global alternative toxicity testing market will reach 9.9 billion US dollars by 2017, for Taiwan to take full advantage of this new market
opportunity,legislation must be passed first). Legislation will also help in accelerating Taiwan's scientific progress as well as enhancing its international image.
2. Taiwan's ban would take place in phases, starting with a testing ban, followed by a phased in a sales ban.
3. Only after the fixed cut off date (the date legislation takes effect) will animal experiments be banned, any products or ingredients tested on animals before the fixed cut off date wont' be affected.
Just last week we had 7 media interviews regarding the issue of petting zoos in Taiwan. The media attention on 'animals in entertainment' is high, due to the incident where a hippo died after suffering injuries during transport.
Super Amazing News! After a year and a half lobbying for changes to the current Animal Protection Act in Taiwan, we are thrilled to announce Taiwan SPCA's amendments passed today's Legislative Yuan Committee Session!
They include amendments to Article 5 of the Animal Protection Act that governs animal owner responsibility.
- Animals can no longer be caged or chained long term, clear definitions of adequate animal shelter will be defined, animals must be provided clean water and food 24 hours a day, animals must be provided with safe collars and leashes, animals must be given the ability to get out of danger in disaster situations, animals can't be kept in unventilated areas, fines for animal neglect!
Also passing today's committee session:
- Any person wanting to keep animals for performance and exhibition purposes must register with the Council of Agriculture, the COA will clearly define 'adequate care' for all performance/ exhibition animals!
These amendments are really the best Christmas gift we could have ever hoped for, really huge steps are being made in animal welfare standards in Taiwan. A huge thank you to the following legislators for their hard work and support in passing these monumental changes to our Animal Protection Act.
TING,SHOU-CHUNG, TIEN,CHIU-CHIN, WANG,YU-MIN,LIN,TAI-HUA, HSIAO,MEI-CHIN, HUANG,WEI-CHE, SU,CHENG-CHING, CHENG,LI-CHUN
Say "NO" to bear bile and other Chinese medicine ingredients taken from protected species. End brutal and unnecessary cruelty to animals.Read Now
In September 2014, the Department of Chinese Medicine and Pharmacy of the Ministry of Health and Welfare held a meeting to evaluate the use of Chinese medicine ingredients from protected species in Taiwan. The regulators held this meeting as several Chinese medicine ingredient importers had appealed to relax the ban on ingredients from protected animals. However, using bi-products from protected animals is unnecessary and can also be very cruel, specifically the extraction of bear bile which is one of the cruelest practices being used today. Bears are confined in narrow cages and bile is extracted through a tube implanted into the bears’ gall bladders. The process causes tremendous suffering to the bears. It is not uncommon for the bears to self-harm or in extreme cases, claw out their own gall bladder, because of the unbearable pain. Because the bears are kept alive to extract their bile, they are forced to endure this torture day after day, year after year.
Animals Asia, a leader in the fight against bear bile, states that research shows bile extracted by such methods is often contaminated with blood, pus, feces, urine, bacteria, and cancer cells, therefore poses a danger to human health. Furthermore, leaders in the Chinese Medicine and Pharmacology field have stated that the said curative effects of bear bile can - in fact - be found in many Chinese medicinal herbs. A synthetic substitute is also now available. It is now completely unnecessary to take bile from bears for use as a medicinal ingredient.
Upon learning of the meeting held by the Department of Chinese Medicine and Pharmacy of the Ministry of Health and Welfare, TSPCA immediately got in touch with regulators to inquire about the context of the meeting. TSPCA also sent official letters to the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the Council of Agriculture to voice our strong opposition as well as providing detailed accounts of exactly how bile is extracted from bears to expose the cruelty. Receiving no reply from the regulators, we called the Department of Chinese Medicine and Pharmacy again. After several rounds of telephone communications, we finally received the regulator’s conclusion that no further meetings of this nature would be convened in the future. TSPCA applauds the Taiwanese regulators’ decision to disallow the possibility of using products from protected species in traditional Chinese medicine. Lifting the import ban on Chinese medicinal ingredients from protected species would encourage illegal animal trading, hunting, and illegal manufacturing. Taiwan would consequently be seen as an island that supports cruelty, and many more innocent lives would be in danger.
As stipulated in the Wildlife Conservation Act, medicinal ingredients from protected animals shall not be traded, publicly exhibited, or displayed without regulatory approval. Anyone who comes across such illegal activities can report them to the 7th Special Police Corps, under the National Police Agency of the Ministry of the Interior. Moreover, in order to encourage people to be pro-active in the protections of animals, the Forestry Bureau provides a reward of up to NT$ 300,000 for the reporting of such illegal acts which result in apprehending offenders.
Taiwan SPCA would like to call upon everyone to say no to bear bile and other Chinese Medicine ingredients that come from protected species. Be proactive by speaking with your Chinese Medicine Doctor to voice your opposition of these types of products. Without the demand, there will be no market for such cruelty.
Wildlife Conservation Act: http://goo.gl/0gIqmn
Guidelines for Incentivizing the Investigation or Reporting on Violation against Wildlife Conservation Act: http://goo.gl/wwZqkj (Chinese ver.)
Where to report an illegal act: http://goo.gl/VndtZZ (Chinese ver.)