One of the groups actively working to end hunting, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), had the dark reality of its ongoing pet euthanasia program revealed on March 8 thanks to documents released by the Center for Consumer Freedom.
The documents, obtained from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, show that PETA killed 97 percent of the adoptable pets in its care during 2009—tying the record it set in 2006. Despite years of public outrage over its euthanasia program, the notorious animal rights group has actually increased the number of adoptable animals it kills at its Norfolk, Va., headquarters, to an average of 44 pets every week. In 2008, PETA killed 95 percent of the adoptable pets in its care.
In total, PETA killed 2,301 of the 2,363 cats and dogs it took in last year, while only placing eight in adoptive homes. Thirty-one other pets were transferred to other groups, 20 remained with PETA as of Dec. 31, and three others died from other causes. That means PETA found a home for only one out of every 300 animals at its headquarters. Since 1998, a total of 23,640 pets have died at the hands of PETA workers.
Despite the hypocrisy of killing the cats and dogs it takes in, PETA works diligently to obtain funds to wage campaigns to end hunting, animal agriculture and the fur industry. In light of its anti-hunting, animal rights agenda, PETA president Ingrid Newkirk vehemently defended her group’s pet euthanasia program last spring.
“It’s easy to point the finger at those who are forced to do the ‘dirty work’ caused by a throwaway society’s casual acquisition and breeding of dogs and cats who end up homeless and unwanted, but at PETA, we will never turn our backs on neglected, unloved, and homeless animals—even if the best we can offer them is a painless release from a world that doesn’t have enough heart or homes with room for them,” wrote Newkirk on PETA’s website. “It makes it easy for people to throw stones at us, but we are against all needless killing: for hamburgers, fur collars, dissection, sport hunting—the works.”
“PETA hasn’t slowed down its hypocritical killing machine one bit, but it keeps browbeating the rest of society with a phony ‘animal rights’ message,” said David Martosko, director of research at the Center for Consumer Freedom. “PETA is more concerned about funding its advertising and media antics than finding suitable homes for needy cats and dogs.”
Despite its $33 million annual budget, PETA does not operate an adoption shelter. PETA employees make no discernible effort to find homes for the thousands of animals they kill every year.
“Since killing pets is A-OK with PETA, why should anyone listen to their demands about eating meat, using lab mice for medical research, or taking children to the circus?” Martosko said. “Virginia regulators should reclassify PETA’s headquarters as a slaughterhouse. This is shockingly unethical behavior.”
The Center for Consumer Freedom obtained PETA’s “Animal Record” filings for every year since 1998 from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Members of the public can see these documents at www.PETAKillsAnimals.com.