There is a lot of news in Kansas City and the surrounding area right now. As such, there are a couple of stories that I think are important to share.
Pin Ups for Pit Bulls Midwest Carnival
Over the weekend was a great event with the folks from Pin Ups for Pit Bulls, along with Shorty Rossi, were in town over the weekend to raise awareness for 'pit bull' type dogs and to raise some money for local rescues.
This was an extremely fun event -- and before hand, the great folks over at Paw Prints had a great interview with both Shorty and Little Darling to get some insight behind the TV show the Pit Boss and behind the efforts from Pin Ups for Pit Bulls.
It sounds like The Pit Boss is going to be airing a show from Denver soon which will expose many of Denver's problems as it relates to the city's breed ban.
Also, a big appreciation to Stacy for Kansas City Dog Advocates getting a shout-out in her interview -- and nice job overall on the interview. They also captured some great photos of the event.
Animal Haven and No More Homeless Pets form Merger
Two local animal welfare organizations have officially formed a merger as Animal Haven - -the city's largest no kill animal shelter, and No More Homeless Pets KC -- on of the two largest low-cost spay neuter clinics, have officially formed a merger to form the Heartland SPCA.
I really don't have a lot of commentary about what this may or may not mean in Kansas City animal welfare. Both organizations have been working very closely together for many years and this just solidifies their partnership. I think the name is problematic (I still think most causal observers will think this is an off-shoot of the ASPCA) -- however, I do think the two groups (both very good organizations) can merge their power for positive change for the animals in the metro area.
More to come on this, no doubt, but this is pretty big news in the metro this week (even though it may have been the worst kept secret ever).
Missouri Dedicates $$ for crack down on Puppy Mills
Earlier this week, Governor Jay Nixion held a press conference at the Humane Society of Missouri that announced that the state has officially dedicated $1.1 million for more state field inspectors, veterinarians and enforcement agents in order to crack down on poorly run commercial breeders in the state.
This promise was part of the Governor's compromise that eliminated parts of voter-approved proposition B, but also added several key enforcement measures including this money for more enforcement and some increased power for the state Attorney General to close down repeated violators of state laws (which has already led to the closing of two breeding operations). This is particularly notable at a time when the state was facing a $704 million budget deficit, even before the state had to set aside $50 million to help the city of Joplin recover from a massive tornado that hit last month, and as the state is dealing with major flood damage that will also take millions of dollars of state funds to rebuild levies and repair damages.
So the state continuing to increase funding for shutting down poorly-run breeding operations in spite of these budget shortfalls is HUGE.
And yet, Wayne Pacelle of HSUS still found room to criticize. Pacelle criticizes the money because he doesn't think it should have come in conjunction with the changes to Prop B. While Pacelle mentioned at one point recognizing the need to compromise on Prop B, he apparently doesn't realize that compromise involves both parties giving in on certain things. Maybe this is why the compromise was among local animal welfare groups and HSUS wasn't invited to the table.
While everyone should be celebrating the increased enforcement resources (which was everyone's #1 need in solving the state's 'puppy mill crisis') at a time of significant financial strain on the state, leave it to HSUS to be the critic (of course, the news comes at a time when Wayne Pacelle was on his book tour and was in St. Louis last night promoting his book, and Kansas City tonight). It should also be noted that the state's $1.1 million toward enforcement -- which is very good news, is less than 1/3 of the money HSUS spent trying to pass Proposition B.
A few other things going on....more to come.