Cooking Contest Stirs Up Animal Rights Controversy

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

Recently, the Extraordinary Squirrel Burger Challenge was organized as a specific event for the Forest Showcase Food and Drink Festival. The challenge invited amateur chefs to submit a recipe consisting of minced squirrel served in a bun. The submitted recipes resulted in fifteen finalists being chosen to participate in the actual challenge. The finalists were given three recently and locally caught squirrels with the only requirement be the creation of a quarter pound burger, consisting entirely of squirrel meat. The challenge was held in the Forest of Dean in Coleford, Gloucestershire; in this particular locale, grey squirrels have become quite the concern—more than one hundred thousand grey squirrels have been found responsible for killing off other forms of wildlife and destroying trees. Therefore, the organizers of the event assumed the loss of three squirrels per finalists would not become an issue; they viewed the competition as a service, a way of eliminating the troubling damage-doers.

Cameronfrostanimalrights

Animal Rights organizations flocked to China to protest the Yulin Festival.

Unfortunately, according to an article recently completed by Express, many animal rights groups did not see it that way in the slightest. Many campaigners working for animal rights have branded the competition as a smear campaign against grey squirrels. Specifically, the RSPCA asked the question of how exactly the squirrels were caught and terminated; was the treatment humane? In addition, Peta, a notorious animal rights group, declared that it was outraged by the very idea of the contest; the organization declared the competition as a merely the festival organizers being desperate for attention.

Alternatively, Peta declared that vegetarian and vegan needs are increasing, as more consumers see the benefits of avoiding meat altogether. As a result, Peta thought the needs of those attending the festival would’ve been better met had the competition been to produce an appealing vegetarian dish. Along similar lines, Vegetarians’ International Voice for Animals, a Bristol-based charity for animal rights, declared that the squirrels were victimized.

Also, several judges and participating groups organizing the festival spoke up in defense of the choice. Judge Lawrence Jefferies, a catering lecturer at Gloucestershire College, spoke out against these accusations, claiming that the loss of the squirrels was a positive, as it would reduce the damage done to the environment in the Forest of Dean. Organizers for the festival acknowledged that they specifically chose the squirrels as a means of raising awareness for an alternative food source in the area.

from Cameron Frost http://cameronfrost.org/cooking-contest-animal-rights/

Southwest and SeaWorld No Longer Partners

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

In 2010, a documentary was produced entitled “Blackfish,” which focused on the mistreatment of animals at SeaWorld’s amusement parks. In particularly, the piece focused on the captivity of the killer whales in the three parks located across the United States. The documentary explores the issue of Tilikum, one of SeaWorld’s killer whales, which attacking and killed its trainer, Dawn Brancheau. Through this exploration of the park and its treatment of its killer whales, the documentary explained that whales held in captivity—as they are at SeaWorld—become more aggressive towards each other and towards humans. As a result of this environment, Tilikum attacked, out of pure instinct.
Since “Blackfish” appeared, many entertainers have canceled planned performances at SeaWorld parks, based in the belief that the park’s mistreatment and misunderstanding of the needs of the killer whale are what directly caused the death of one of its employees.

blackfish-cameron frost

This sign of support has only driven animal rights activists further in their efforts to discourage corporations from partnering and working with SeaWorld. According to an article recently completed by The Guardian, activists assembled to rally earlier this year, gathering signatures for a petition to urge Southwest Airlines to cut off their marketing partnership with SeaWorld. The partnership, which has existed for twenty-five years, resulted in three of Southwest’s planes painted to depict prominent SeaWorld animals.

The activists wanted the partnership severed, as to have one less company supporting a park that they believed to not have the best interest for the animals at heart. To make their case, a petition and required signatures were assembled and was given to Southwest Airlines. The partnership has since been severed. However, according to the article, the decision was not based solely in “Blackfish” or the urgings of the activists. Both companies mutually parted ways, in search of partnerships that address the growing international markets.
Regardless of not being the sole priority behind the fracturing of the partnership, Marilee McInnis—Southwest Airlines’ spokeswoman—did declare that, on the issue of animal rights, they always maintained a listening and educated ear.

(Youtube)

from Cameron Frost http://ift.tt/1vszAFC

Cameron Frost’s Latest Prezi

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

Cameron Frost has been a professional photographer for the last decade and has dedicated much of his time to serving his community. Cameron enjoys working alongside local charities and helping them grow any way that he can! To learn more about Cameron Frost’s experience, background, career history, interests and activities, check out the video about Cameron’s latest prezi presentation below:

Cameron Frost: Prezi from Cameron Frost on Vimeo.

from Cameron Frost http://ift.tt/1Aw5weY

How Can You Help Out At Your Local Animal Shelter?

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

Get involved this summer at your local pet shelter in order to do something great in your community. There are so many ways to help out the local pet community including volunteering at the shelter for rescued animals. Animal shelters have estimated that they take care of 6-8 million dogs and cats each year in the US. Around 3 to 4 million of the animals are euthanized. Because there are no factual reports about how many are actually euthanized, so these are all estimates. During the 1970s, shelters had to euthanize around 12-20 million animals when there were 67 million pets in homes. Nowadays, shelters euthanize around 2.7 million animals while there are 135 million pets in homes. We have made progress from euthanizing 25% of the dogs and cats in the US to only euthanizing 3% of them. More progress can be made if we simply work on diminishing animal overpopulation.

cameronfrostpetadoption

The question we keep asking ourselves is why are there so many animals in shelters? This is mainly due to the problem of animal overpopulation when for example, owners relinquish their pets or pets are rescued from the streets and bring them to shelters. In order to prevent animal overpopulation within shelters, we need to encourage pet owners to be responsible pet owners by providing information and training on proper pet care. Another way to keep pet alive is to promote private citizens to volunteer in animal shelters as much as possible.

Below are some tips for how to begin volunteering at an animal shelter:

1. Find a shelter near you. Begin by searching Petfinder in order to find a shelter closest to your home. This way you can find a shelter by figuring out first where pets are up for adoption within your community. Get the shelter’s phone number.

2. Contact the shelter via phone or stop by. Drop into the shelter to learn more about how it operates and what the guidelines are for volunteers. Also, ask them if there are other ways to help the shelter besides volunteering in person.

3. Find out if you meet the requirements to volunteer if you are truly interested. If you are too young and the shelter tells you that you can’t volunteer because they don’t have tasks for you to complete, then this most likely isn’t true. Suggest that you can clean cages, make phone calls/ general office work, work on their social media, take photos of pets to put up on PetFinder, or even become a foster home for animals.

from Cameron Frost http://ift.tt/1kNLEuE

Animal Rights Activists Storm Chinese Dog Festival

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

Cameronfrostanimalrights

Animal Rights organizations flocked to China to protest the Yulin Festival.

In recent news in China, hordes of angry animal rights activists flocked to the scene of a traditional Dog Meat Festival known as the Yulin Festival in the Guanxi Province which includes the slaughter of around 10,000 dogs. The festival occurs every summer when thousands of tourists and locals flock to the district in order to consume dog meat. At the festival, visitors consume traditional dog meat dish such as dog hotpot. Along with the dog meat, the festival goers drink enormous amounts of alcohol.

Although the country takes part in strange diet traditions, there is now a growing concern over public health and the public’s well-being. More importantly, there is an overwhelming concern and outcry over animal cruelty and the rights of the slaughtered dogs. Before this summer’s festival the authorities vowed to crackdown on the dog slaughtering  and be stricter on food regulations.

Days leading op to the festival, the animal rights activists staked out the restaurants and vendors serving the meat in order to try to stop the dog eating practices that China has taken part in for centuries. The activists also began many social media campaigns in order to disrupt the festival’s dog eating customs. A popular Chinese restaurant, South China Morning, complained that a few of these activists broke into their slaughterhouse and stole their dogs in order to keep the restaurant from killing them.

A separate group collected money and used their own finances to buy dogs from restaurants for as much as one hundred and eighty dollars each. This happened while a group of Buddhists recited prayers as they walked through the hanging carcasses in an area with the most slaughtered dogs dogs for sale. The tension between the activists and the diners came to a head on Saturday when the opposing groups began fighting in the street until the police eventually intervened.

An activist with Animals Asia, stated that the festival was cruel and unhygienic. Many dogs are stolen from homes after being darted with drugs which will most likely make its way into the stomachs of festival goers. All in all, although the locals promote the festival as part of a cultural tradition, most find the festival to be cruel and inhumane.

 

from Cameron Frost http://ift.tt/1lUzK7m

Pet Adoption Transforms Valentine’s Day Weekend

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

While the majority of the population spent copious amounts of money on commercial products in an attempt to impress their loved one on Valentine’s Day, a few smart individuals realized a much cheaper, and furrier, option. Last weekend national animal welfare organization known as the Best Friends Animal Society, along with other animal rescue groups and shelters, were promoting their special program entitled, “The One”. The objective for the program was to encourage consumers to avoid pricey online or in-person pet retailers and adopt just “The One” they’ve always wanted for only $14.

The program was available nationwide through a collection of different local animal shelters, groups, and of course Best Friends Animal Society locations. The program also featured a marketing campaign that emphasized the humor in putting aside your Valentine’s Day woes and adopting the puppy of your dreams. But while the advertising campaign might have seemed humorous, this was an extremely serious attempt to save animal lives.

cameronfrostvdayadoption

Adopting a pet from a great way to save a life.

As the national manager of Best Friends Animal Society, Elizabeth Oreck, made clear, most people don’t realize that pet stores and online retailers predominantly rely on the 10,000 puppy and kitten farms to supply the consumers. Meanwhile the large amount of pets available through shelters and rescue groups typically go unwanted. Thus, consumers could not only save money but also these animals’ lives! The variety of pets offered in shelters is immense, ranging from puppies to purebreds, who make up around 25% of the those available.

So while some were out spending money on flowers, chocolates, or other gifts for their significant others, there was a mass amount of people that chose instead to use that money to give a pet a home and in doing so saved a life. I would say, that’s one successful Valentine’s Day weekend.

from Cameron Frost http://ift.tt/1kT2XhQ

Are You Ready To Adopt A Pet?

Standard

New post from Cameron Frost

If you are looking for a pet, think about adopting one from an animal shelter. At most animal shelters you will find cats, dogs, rabbits, reptiles and more. Each of these animals needs a safe, loving owner and home. Many animals who end up in shelters have some type of emotional or behavioral issue which leads to most prospective adopters to overlook them for their “shortcomings.” Pets, especially those adopted from shelters, are major responsibilities.

cameronfrostadoptionblog

Consider if you are prepared to adopt an animal from a shelter before doing so?

If you are looking to adopt a new pet, consider these factors beforehand:

Do your research first. Before heading to the shelter, research which types of dogs, cats, etc that you might be interested in taking home with you. Different breeds will have various behaviors so you want to think about what these behaviors are and if you can deal with them. For instance, certain breeds of dogs bark, show more aggressive tendencies, or are more difficult to train.

Consider the future. What if you plan on moving in the future and your aren’t sure if the place you are moving is a difficult place to live with a pet or not. Once you commit to adopting a pet, it becomes one of your top priorities and you have to begin planning every aspect of your life around it. Also, consider the size of your home and imagine if it would be an acceptable amount of space for an animal to live and move around in. In particular, dogs have a ton of energy, so they need lots of room to exercise. Don’t forget to think about your schedule. Do you work late and live alone? Pets need attention, food, and to be walked. If you aren’t home, then who will make sure your pet is safe and taken care of?

Visit before adopting. Research shelters in your area and visit more than one in order to see a range of pet options. Bring your roommates or whoever else might be living with the animal to make sure that person is comfortable with the pet. Ask the shelter tons of questions about the animal’s behavior and health background.

Take pet adoption seriously and don’t adopt on a whim. Realize that it’s a long commitment and can be quite a life adjustment. Make sure you are ready for it. For more information, visit DoSomething.org.

from Cameron Frost http://ift.tt/Kr8YlZ