Tag Archives: advocacy

Free Screenings of The Paw Project Documentary


Don’t miss the upcoming screenings of the documentary The Paw Project, which will be held on the following dates and times:

OCTOBER 18 – 24
Pasadena’s Laemmle Playhouse 7
673 East Colorado Boulevard
Pasadena, CA 91101

OCTOBER 19 at 11:00 AM, OCTOBER 20 at 11:00 AM
Laemmle Monica Theatre
1332 2nd Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401

The Paw Project documentary is an inspiring David and Goliath story of a grassroots movement to protect felines, both large and small, from the cruelty of declawing and how the movement has prevailed despite the efforts of well-funded professional veterinary associations to thwart the movement.

In the United States today, approximately 25% of domesticated cats are declawed. Declawing is the amputation of the last bone in a cat’s toes. Despite the physical and behavioral harm inflicted on cats who are declawed, many veterinarians continue to recommend the procedure — which costs upwards of $1,200 per hour — even for very young kittens.

These are animals we love, and with whom we share our homes. Why aren’t we being told the truth of what the declawing procedure involves? What goes on when the vet takes our beloved companions in the back of the veterinary clinic? The Paw Project documentary chronicles the happy and unexpected twist of fate that led to the protection of many animals through the grassroots advocacy led by Dr. Conrad and The Paw Project.

The Paw Project (2012) – Official Trailer from Paw Project on Vimeo.


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Eat Like You Care

eatlikeyoucareAnother exciting book announcement! Friends of the UCLA Animal Law Program who attended our May 2012 conference “Animals and the Law: Multiple Perspectives” will remember our amazing speaker Gary L. Francione, Board of Governors Professor, Distinguished Professor of Law & Nicholas deB. Katzenbach Scholar of Law and Philosophy at Rutgers University School of Law. Please join us in congratulating Professor Francione and his co-author Anna Charlton, Adjunct Professor of Law at Rutgers University School of Law, on the publication of their book “Eat Like You Care: An Examination of the Morality of Eating Animals.”

Professors Francione and Charlton’s work is always compelling, and this book is no exception. The description of the book reads, in part, as follows:

Francione and Charlton argue that if you think animals matter morally—if you reject the idea that animals are just things—your own beliefs require that you stop eating animal products. There is nothing “extreme” about a vegan diet; what is extreme is the inconsistency between what we say we believe and how we act where animals are concerned.

Many of us are uneasy thinking about the animals who end up on our plates. We may have thought about stopping eating animal products but there are many excuses that have kept us from doing so. The authors explore the 30+ excuses they have heard as long-time vegans and address each one, showing why these excuses don’t work. Packed with clear, commonsense thinking on animal ethics, without jargon or complicated theory, this book will change the way you think about what you eat.

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Posted by on June 25, 2013 in advocacy, animal rights, vegan


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Mind If I Order the Cheeseburger?

colbFriends of the UCLA Animal Law Program who attended our May 2012 conference “Animals and the Law: Multiple Perspectives” will remember our amazing speaker Sherry F. Colb, Charles Evans Hughes Scholar and Professor of Law at Cornell University Law School. Please join us in congratulating Professor Colb on the publication of her forthcoming book “Mind If I Order the Cheeseburger?: And Other Questions People Ask Vegans.” It looks terrific and is on pre-sale now at The description  of the book reads as follows:

What about plants? Don’t animals eat other animals? There are no perfect vegans, so why bother? If you’re vegan, how many times have you been asked these, and other similarly challenging, questions from non-vegans? Using humor and reason, Sherry F. Colb takes these questions at face value and also delves deeply into the motivations behind behind them, coming up with answers that are not only intelligent but insightful about human nature. Through examples, case studies, and clear-eyed logic, she provide arguments for everything from why veganism is compatible with the the world’s major religions to why vegetarianism is not enough. In the end, she shows how it is possible for vegans and non-vegans to engage in a mutually beneficial conversation without descending into counterproductive name-calling, and to work together to create a more hospitable world for human animals and non-human animals alike.

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Posted by on May 4, 2013 in advocacy, animal rights, vegan


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Using Political Process for Shelter Reform

The UCLA Animal Law Program is pleased to announce its next event: Using the Political Process for Shelter Reform, which will feature a presentation by leading shelter expert Nathan J. Winograd.

Nathan J. Winograd

Nathan is the Director of the national No Kill Advocacy Center. He is a graduate of Stanford Law School, a former criminal prosecutor and attorney, held a variety of leadership positions including director of operations for the San Francisco SPCA and executive director of the Tompkins County SPCA, two of the most successful shelters in the nation. He has spoken nationally and internationally on animal sheltering issues, has written animal protection legislation at the state and national level, has created successful No Kill programs in both urban and rural communities, and has consulted with a wide range of animal protection groups including some of the largest and best known in the nation. Nathan is the author of three books, Redemption, Irreconcilable Differences, and All American Vegan (co-written with his wife, Jennifer). Redemption won five national book awards and redefined the animal protection movement in the United States.

In his presentation, Nathan will discuss ways to get animal control to shift from a reactive, public health model of sheltering based on killing, to a proactive one which saves over 90% of all animals, returning “euthanasia” to its dictionary definition. He will also explore how to reform your local shelter to end the killing through an advocacy and political campaign, debunking the myths that allow the current paradigm of killing to continue.

Please join us for this event, which will be held on March 13, 2012 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in Room 1347 at the UCLA School of Law. There is no charge to attend the event, but it costs $11.00 to park at UCLA. Space is limited to individuals who have pre-registered due to the size of the room in which the event will be held. To submit a request to register for this event, please complete our online registration form at If you are an attorney attending the event and wish to receive MCLE credit, please indicate such in the form. Attorneys wishing to receive MCLE credit should arrive early so that we can process the necessary paperwork.

Registrants will be notified of the status of their requests within one week of the submission. For further details about this event, please contact the UCLA Animal Law Program at

Directions to the UCLA School of Law:
Take the 405 to the Sunset Boulevard exit.
Sunset Boulevard (east) to Hilgard Avenue, turn right.
Follow Hilgard Avenue to the Westholme Drive (second light) entrance to the campus.
Turn right on Westholme Drive.
The parking kiosk is immediately on the right.
Please tell the attendant that you are attending an event at the Law School, and you will be directed to the nearest available parking lot. The parking charge per vehicle is $11.00.

UCLA School of Law is a State Bar of California approved MCLE provider.


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Bruce Wagman, Animal Shelter Litigation

Another round of many thanks to our speaker Bruce Wagman, who also has graciously agreed to make his PowerPoint presentation available to our participants. Thanks to all who helped make our event a success! Stay tuned for future events and news.


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Sheldon Eisenberg, Animal Shelter Litigation

Many thanks to our speaker Sheldon Eisenberg, who has graciously agreed to make his PowerPoint presentation available to our participants. Bruce Wagman’s PPT slides soon to follow!


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Thank You!

The UCLA Animal Law Program sends a warm thanks to everyone who attended our event Animal Shelter Litigation last night and showed your support for the excellent work of Bruce Wagman and Sheldon Eisenberg and your dedication to helping the animals of Los Angeles County! The handouts provided by the speakers will remain available for viewing and download at

For those at the event last night who asked about resources concerning making public records requests, two great sources are the Los Angeles Times’ Citizens’ Guide to Acquiring California Public Records and the Los Angeles Times’ Pocket Guide to the California Public Records Act. A third great resource, and one that is specific to public records act requests to shelters, is ShelterTrak, which has links to actual PRA requests to LA shelters and documents obtained through PRA requests.

Attorneys and rescuers interested in participating in a discussion and action group for matters concerning animal shelters, please contact us at and we will create a discussion list for collaboration.

Stay tuned for announcements for future events–we hope to see you there!


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EPA Rule Banning Rat Poison in Danger

Have you ever noticed the poison traps next to buildings or in parking structures? Instead of practicing safe exclusion measures and conscientiously disposing of trash, people often allow rat and mice populations to grow and then justify their killing of these poor animals with methods that cause horrific suffering.

As bad as those rat traps are, current EPA rules allow for the indiscriminate use of non-containerized rodent poisons in areas where rats, mice, wildlife, children, and other companion animals can consume it quite readily. Loose bait rodenticides are cheaper to produce and use than containerized poisons, so it is not surprising that more deaths occur in lower-income areas. Moreover, rodenticides have become increasingly toxic, and they can be sold in unlimited amounts, greatly increasing the risks to all animals and the environment, which affects all animals, including rats and mice.

A couple of years ago, the EPA agreed to new rules that would limit the amount and toxicity of rat poisons sold to residential consumers, as well as prohibit the sale of loose bait rodenticides to residential consumers. The rules – supposed to go into effect early this month – would make it illegal to sell rat and mouse poisons to residential consumers unless the packaging is such that only a rat or mouse could get in, not a child or other animal. Other rules would limit the toxicity and amount of rodenticides that can be sold to retail consumers at one time. Taken together, implementation of the rules should result in less usage of rat poisons, which could be of some help to rats and mice as well as to other animals.

Two top rodenticide-producing companies (D-Con and Woodstream Corporation) are among four companies fighting against the ban, with protests to the EPA and stated intent to challenge the rules if implemented. If the ban is not implemented, it will be left up to each property owner to decide how to kill animals they believe are pests. If the rules are not implemented, residential consumers would continue to be able to buy large amounts of poison, and they would continue to be able to buy the most toxic compounds.

It is troubling that poisons are used at all. Certainly humans could do a better job of preventing the growth of animal populations they consider to be “pests” by non-lethal means. On the other hand, incremental bans and restrictions like these could be understood as positive attempts to limit the extent of harm we currently engage in and to begin to change the public’s thinking about entitlement to use poisons. If you would like to read more, the following links provide more information.

Additional Reading:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA Takes Major Actions to Reduce Americans’ Risk from Mouse and Rat Poisons / Move Will Better Protect Children, Pets, and Wildlife (June 7, 2011).

Robert McClure & Environmental Health News, Rat Poisons Endanger 10,000 Children Every Year in U.S., Scientific American (Dec. 14, 2010).

Ryan Tracy, EPA to Ban Some Rat Poisons, Wall Street Journal (June 7, 2011).

Home Channel News, Bait Pellet Rodenticide to Remain on Shelves (Mar. 14, 2011).


Posted by on June 11, 2011 in advocacy, epa, legislation


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Introducing the UCLA PAW REVIEW!

Logo for the UCLA Paw ReviewThe UCLA Animal Law Program is pleased to announce its new regular feature, the UCLA Paw Review! The UCLA Paw Review is our take on the traditional legal publishing format of the law review.

Our version, however, will not only include regular posts on laws affecting animals, but will also include summaries of suggested reading materials, legislative alerts for proposed legislation that affects animals, interviews, and even fun content such as movie and book reviews (with, of course, a paw rating system). We hope you will enjoy it!

I dedicate this week’s reading suggestion to animal advocates everywhere who work so tirelessly to save and make better lives for animals. Because animal advocates aim to challenge the status quo, a world in which the exploitation and killing of animals is accepted legally and morally as “necessary,” the reality of the violence witnessed by advocates is often denied and dismissed as extremist exaggeration. For advocates, then, I highly recommend the article Trauma, Law, and Advocacy for Animals [PDF], which was written by our own UCLA Law Professor Taimie Bryant. The article discusses the trauma animal advocates experience from repeated exposure to legally sanctioned violence against animals and proposes legal reform initiatives that may counter-balance traumatizing forms of advocacy and build the social context for addressing violence against animals.

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Posted by on May 18, 2011 in advocacy, UCLA Paw Review




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