Two More Victories in Michigan
The first victory in the continuing fight to ban the sale of shelter animals to experimenters comes from Taylor, Michigan. PCRM sent letters to city council members and the mayor, and a letter from PCRM president Neal Barnard, M.D., was printed in a local paper. The Taylor city council voted unanimously to abolish pound seizure.
This is another blow to a notorious “Class B” dealer who was the primary trafficker of animals in the area. He was also the main dealer in Livingston County, Michigan, where county officials ended pound seizure last April.
For a $50 fee, anyone can obtain a Class B dealer license from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and there is little oversight as to how or where these dealers obtain animals or in what conditions the animals are kept before they are sold. In communities that continue to allow pound seizure, it is usually Class B dealers who obtain animals from shelters or other sources and sell them to testing facilities. Complaints of squalid conditions, inhumane methods of transport, and lack of veterinary care are common.
Just two weeks after the Taylor victory, Michigan’s Manistee County commissioners voted unanimously to end pound seizure. PCRM had sent letters urging this outcome to county commissioners and the press after being contacted by local activists.
Michigan activists are using the momentum of these victories to push other jurisdictions to join Taylor, Manistee, and Livingston counties, and the 14 states that have permanently banned the sale of shelter animals for experimentation.