Saturday, October 30

I'd Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur

Spread the Word put on a fantastic, professional "I'd Rather Go Naked than Wear Fur" photoshoot today. The event allowed ordinary South Africans to show it all, to show their support of the Fur Free Campaign. Almost 50 people participated to create adverts like this: 

Well done to everyone brave enough to bare it all for an important cause. While I'd rather go naked than wear fur, I'd actually prefer to do neither. However, I have a lot of respect for everyone who took part. If you didn't get the chance to participate today but would like to star in your own advert, click here. Either way, please pledge not to wear fur

Animals bred and killed for their fur are vaginally and anally electrocuted and skinned alive. There is nothing glamorous about the fur trade.

On a related note, my friends and I went to watch Evita on Friday night at the Montecasino Theatre. It was very good, if not quite the same standard as The Lion King, and Chicago. It was heartwarming to know that none of the fur used in the play was real! Thanks to the efforts of Fur Free the theatre promised to use only faux! The theatre was accordingly given an award, by PETA.  

There will be a (fully-clothed) Fur Free demonstration in Johannesburg on 27 November. Please join us!

Thursday, October 28

Noise Pollution

On 5 November people around the world celebrate a plot by Guido Fawkes to blow up the British Parliament. The importance of saluting someone who tried to kill a bunch of people in another country 400 years ago has always eluded me. In fact, I'm pretty sure that's terrorism! Even more concerning is that people celebrate by letting off fireworks in residential areas, terrorising domestic and wild animals for miles. Terrified birds abandon their nests, dogs jump through closed windows, and cats run through the streets and are hit by cars. The stories are endless

To avoid disaster please keep your dogs and cats inside during the evenings and nights leading up to, and following 5 November. Speak to your vet about a sedative for them, and play soothing music and/or some kind of white noise (such as a fan). Click here for more things you can do for your companion animals. 

Please don't buy fireworks, or set them off anywhere. Boycott events that show fireworks too. 

Monday, October 25

Adopting, Breeding & Buying

I know you didn’t think I was going to wait any longer to add pictures of my perfect dogs! And why are they so perfect? They’re adopted!

Puppies bought at pet shops are very cute, and very sad. They come from puppy mills and backyard breeders, where no money is spent on the dogs’ comfort – or health. Dogs suffer ammonia burns when they are forced to live in their own urine, and the urine from dogs in cages above them leaks down onto them. This abuse is purely for profit. By buying the cute little doggie in the window you are funding this awful cycle.

Breeders, while not as merciless, are still in it for the money. They breed – and overbreed – the best looking dogs at the expense of their health. Dogs from breeders have a variety of inherent problems from allergies to hip dysplasia.

More importantly, anyone who breeds dogs is carelessly ignoring the overpopulation crisis. SPCAs and shelters are overflowing with perfect dogs, because instead of adopting from these shelters, people are buying from pet shops and breeders. Rather save a life – adopt!

Now, about my dogs….

Charlotte Saffron is a very sweet amputee who doesn’t let her disability slow her down!

Silky-Dog Lucy Elizabeth is the most gentle, silky dog you have ever met! She is just too lovely!

 Sir Benjamin is full of energy, and perfectly healthy, at 10 years old!

Charlotte Saffron and Lucy Elizabeth are from Community Led Animal Welfare (CLAW), and Benjamin is from Wetnose. The SPCA also has some amazing dogs who need homes! Have a look at the dogs who need loving homes here.

Saturday, October 23

Gareth Cliff's response to the PETA Demo

While the response from the public and media was mostly positive, the response from Gareth Cliff (5FM Radio) was not. I received some rather frantic messages from activists who were very upset by what he had to say. I assume they wanted me to get angry and phone into his show. I did neither.

If I have the right to put activists in cages on the side of the road, members of the media have the right to say what they like about it. I know that by holding demonstrations we attract both praise and criticism. I am grateful for both.

Considering the amount of work we put into the demo, I would be far more concerned if Gareth Cliff didn’t think it was worth mentioning. 

PETA Demo: Kentucky Fried Cruelty

On Tuesday 19 October 2010, we held an anti-KFC protest on behalf of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). We featured four PETA activists in cages on the pavement outside a KFC in Randburg, Johannesburg, South Africa.

The protest was held to draw attention to the terrible conditions chickens are kept in at KFC suppliers. Chickens at KFC suppliers have their toes and beaks cut off and are thrown into packed warehouses that are never cleaned. The smell of feces is overwhelming. The birds are fed growth-inducing antibiotics routinely and are bred for maximum meat. Their little legs often become crippled under their own weight. The birds are dumped into scalding hot water – even if they are still conscious – to remove their feathers.

These abuses are unnecessary, and unforgivable.

We held this protest to ask South Africans to boycott KFC until they make some basic humane changes.

The activists were such troopers and didn’t move when it started raining! As fourteen-year-old activist Jamie said, “The chickens can’t leave when they’re uncomfortable.”

The demonstration went very well and got into the Beeld, the Citizen, the Times, and the Randburg Sun.

Many thanks to Ashley and PETA Asia Pacific for all the help and support, and to all the activists who showed up for the demo, and stayed through the rain. 

The Beeld