Tag Archives: Cat Legislation

New French Law Elevates Animals’ Status

Long-Haired Tortoiseshell Cat
© A Blue Kind of Black – Fotlolia.com

It’s
taken a couple of hundred years, but the French parliament has finally
recognized what most of us have known all along: Animals are “living,
sentient beings.” Until now, French law gave a cat the same status as
the couch it was sleeping on.

Until a recent change to the
Civil Code, all animals were considered working farm beasts and were
classified as goods or furniture.

The new designation means stiffer penalties for animal abuse and cruelty, including abuse of farm animals.

While most people in France probably think the change is long overdue,
it does pose some issues for the country’s cattle breeders who want
farms to get bigger but not necessarily better.

In 2002,
Germany became the first country in the European Union to grant
constitutional rights to animals, according to the website rt.com. In 2006, members of the Dutch Party for the Animals (PvdD) became the first animal-rights MPs anywhere in the world.

Although animals do have some protections in the US, most jurisdictions
still consider them property, much like the computer or phone you’re
using right now.

Lawmaker Seeks To Ban Declawing Cats

Cat Claw

Like
millions of Americans, Linda Rosenthal thinks declawing is cruel. But
as a state assemblywoman from Manhattan, she’s in a position to do
something about it.

A Democrat, she’s introduced a bill that
would prohibit declawing cats and other animals, except to remove a
tumor or for another medical reason. If the bill passes, New York will
be the first state to ban declawing. Rosenthal and the cats
have some powerful allies in the Humane Society of 
New York and The Paw
Project, a California-based anti-declawing group. But the American
Veterinary Medical Association’s reaction has been lukewarm.

The organization, which, among other things, advises vets on business
practices and opportunities, says declawing cats should be done only as a
“last resort.” Whatever that means…

Declawing is far more
than a “manicure.” To declaw a cat, the veterinarian must amputate the
top digit of every toe. The procedure is illegal in most countries
except the US.

This is my favorite declaw website. And here’s my cat’s blog post listing Nine Reasons Why All Cat Paws Need Claws. Oh, and if your cat’s shredding the furniture, this should help.

If you live in New York, be sure to write to your state legislators to
let them know you support Rosenthal’s legislation. Nationwide, this is a
policy that’s long overdue!

No Tatts For Cats

Black Cat Face
No tatts for this cat

Are
you thinking your cat might look cute with a mouse tattooed on his
side? If you live in New York, you’d better move fast because tattooing
companion animals will be illegal 120 days from now. So will unnecessary
piercings.

“This is animal abuse pure and simple,” said Gov. Mario Cuomo
as he signed a bill outlawing unnecessary piercing and tattooing of
cats, dogs and all other pets into law earlier this week.

 

Linda
Rosenthal (D-Manhattan) introduced the bill in the state legislature
several years ago when she heard about a woman who was selling “Gothic
kittens” with piercings on their necks, ears and spines.

“Tattooing and piercing of companion animals serves no purpose other
than to satisfy the aesthetic predilections of the owner,” Rosenthal
said. “And it inflicts unnecessary pain on the animal that they cannot
understand or contextualize.”

Under the new law, piercing and
tattooing will be allowed only in limited circumstances, such as ear
tags on rabbits and tattoos for identification purposes.