HSUS to defer Colorado ballot initiative to ban tail docking

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The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and its Colorado affiliates will defer moving forward with a Colorado ballot initiative banning dairy cattle tail docking in the state, HSUS said in a May 13 press release.

According to the release, Wayne Pacelle, HSUS president, HSUS Colorado state director Jacquelyn Pyun, Colorado dairy farmer Angela Smith, along with two members of the HSUS Agriculture Council for Colorado – chair Dr. Tom Parks, DVM, and cattle rancher Mike Callicrate – indicated they’ve decided against moving forward with a ballot measure this election cycle.

According to published reports, Callicrate filed four Colorado ballot measures in January 2014. Two dealt with broad animal husbandry practices, while two dealt directly with tail docking. The HSUS decision to defer action is apparently related to language changes made to the ballot measures in April by the Colorado Legislative Council and Title Board.

“Even though polling shows that Colorado voters favor a ballot measure to protect dairy cows from abuses like tail docking by a three-to-one margin, we have decided against moving forward this election cycle,” said Callicrate. “The Colorado Legislative Council and Title Board misconstrued our simple and straightforward language. Their action effectively runs out the clock for a refile of new language. We plan to launch a website to educate citizens, including livestock producers, about this abusive practice.”

The issue isn't dead.

“The plan to have Colorado agriculture industry representatives conduct ongoing review of animal welfare issues – hatched in 2008 after the passage of a bill to phase out extreme confinement of breeding pigs and veal calves – has been a complete failure,” Pacelle added. “Even though almost every dairy trade industry association and every major veterinary group opposes the unnecessary and inhumane practice of cutting off cows’ tails, this group could not muster the resolve to deal with this problem. We are not aware of any animal welfare improvements that this group has initiated. This leaves us with legislative or ballot initiatives as the only potential pathways for reform.”

A bill introduced last year by Rep. Steve Lebsock (D-Thornton) would have required that tail docking be prohibited unless conducted under anesthesia by a veterinarian. Approved in committee, that bill failed to clear the Colorado House.

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Canada  |  May, 14, 2014 at 09:24 AM

How is it the HSUS never introduces a bill to ban the the tail and ear docking of dogs! Which is strictly for appearance!

USA  |  May, 14, 2014 at 06:19 PM

Because that is not part of their agenda as they do not really care about animals, they simply want to destroy agriculture and those that work so hard to feed us in this country!!

Randy Janssen    
Texas  |  May, 15, 2014 at 06:07 AM

The HSUS is not your local animal shelter. The HSUS has been hijacked by radical animal rights activist. It is an over 150 million dollar corporation that spends almost every dime it gets on obscene salaries and filing lawsuits. It raises money by showing ads of cute dogs and cats, but it spends less then 1 cent on the dollar to feed and shelter cats and dogs. The HSUS is being investigated for fraud and it was convicted of racketeering in Florida. More and more members of congress are questioning the tax free status of the HSUS because of its political activities. The HSUS IS AGAINST RODEO AND WESTERN TRADITIONS. IT IS FOR A VEGETERIAN LIFE STYLE AND AGAINST EATING MEAT. The HSUS says it spends 79% of its money for animal welfare programs, but it does not say what they are. The HSUS has been accused of paying employees to abuse animals and videoing the abuse as proof that meat production should be stopped. The HSUS uses some of its money to change our eating habits and standard of living by working to outlaw farming methods which are used on family farms. The HSUS is bad for America so don't applaud its lackeys. If you want to support something think about giving to the child fund, St. Jude, the Wounded Warriors, or you local food bank. If you want to help animals, give money to you local animal shelter. Giving money to the HSUS is throwing money away on a bloated bureaucracy that waste it on salaries and litigation. It claims to do good but if you really look at what it does, it only piggybacks on the work of local organizations.

Columbus  |  May, 15, 2014 at 09:43 AM

And you're a nucking fitwit!

Ed & Emma    
May, 17, 2014 at 05:30 AM

Randy, only speaks the truth, Schizo.....does that bother you?

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