Zoos and aquariums vital to global conservation

This piece originally ran in The Hill newspaper.


Americans love animals. In fact, more of us go to visit zoos and aquariums each year than attend all professional sporting events combined. Yet recent incidents such as the one with Harambe, the Western lowland gorilla who was shot to death at the Cincinnati Zoo after a three-year-old boy fell into his enclosure, have prompted a small but vocal minority to question if the world still needs zoos and aquariums.

The fact is, as lawmakers learned this week at an event on Capitol Hill, zoos, aquariums and conservation parks are essential if we want to preserve the magnificent creatures with whom we share the Earth.

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2015 in Pictures: Victories for America’s Children and Animals

Caucus of the Humane Bond

2015 was a remarkable year for America’s oldest national humanitarian organization – one in which we touched more than 42,000 lives every minute with lifesaving, life-affirming programs that made a difference for hundreds of millions of children and animals.  Here are just a few highlights of our work that you made possible this year:

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Finally, victory for America’s military dogs!

K-9 Battle Buddy team – Marines Lance Corporal Jeff DeYoung and MWD Cena

K-9 Battle Buddy team – Marines Lance Corporal Jeff DeYoung and MWD Cena

I am thrilled to inform you that the President has signed the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act, which means that now ALL military working dogs will be guaranteed a ride home and retirement on U.S. soil!

And best of all, the people who know these dogs better than anyone — their handlers who served bravely alongside them on the hot desert sands of Iraq and Afghanistan and on bases around the world — will be given the first rights at adopting these canine heroes.

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Red Star to the Rescue: The Journey to Hope with The Miami 15

Miami 15 Rescue
During the stormy weekend, American Humane Association’s Red Star Rescue team was in action, doing what they do best – saving lives of precious animals. On Friday, Red Star Rescue pulled into Hollywood, Florida to pick up some precious cargo: 15 dogs who were given a second chance at life. The dogs were loaded onto our well-equipped Lois Pope Red Star Rescue Vehicle, ready for the long drive up the coast, hoping to beat the terrible weather predicted on the heels of Hurricane Joaquin. Continue reading

Betting on the future of racehorses

Horse racing

Millions of Americans, and indeed millions around the world, will tune in to the Preakness this Saturday, watching the performance of incredible four-legged athletic champions in their pursuit of the Triple Crown. Regardless of what your ideology is on racing, the horses are beautiful, and we all want to ensure they are humanely treated and provided with a forever loving home in their retirement.Several years ago, American Humane Association provided assistance to the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA) as they developed a rigorous and thorough accreditation process for the retirement of Thoroughbreds. “The American Association of Equine Practitioners and the American Humane Association, among many others, have helped the TAA create a rigorous and thorough accreditation process that prioritizes one thing above all else – the welfare of retired Thoroughbreds,” said TAA Vice President Madeline Auerbach. Continue reading

Kindness 100: Celebrating a century of “Be Kind to Animals Week®” all year-round


For generations of Americans, the first week of May has always been associated with kindness. Indeed, from May 3-9 millions of people around the country young and old will join American Humane Association to celebrate our “Be Kind to Animals Week®,” the oldest commemorative week in U.S. history.

What makes this year so special is that we will be celebrating 100 years as the most successful humane education effort ever undertaken. Continue reading