A video of my presentation, Topsy, An Elephant We Must Never Forget, will be shown at the conference organised by the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.… Read More


Animal Biographies – Recovering Animal Selfhood through Interdisciplinary Narration? I will be presenting my paper ‘Topsy, An Elephant We Must Never Forget.’… Read More


Mark Hawthorne wrote Bleating Hearts because he wanted to ‘examine animal exploitation that does not get enough (or any) attention.’ (4) As you might expect, this is a book that is a catalog of our inhumanity to animals. It’s not an easy read but each chapter concludes with a ‘What You Can Do’ section. The… Read More


Various animal protection organisations and pro-animal bloggers throughout the world are proclaiming success in that the British government has banned wild animals in circuses. This is not true. Further, to repeat this claim is to give credit where none is due. The commitment made is the intent to ban wild animals in circuses. Meanwhile, the government… Read More


Sadly, I am unable to attend but I urge those who can to attend the Association of Lawyers for Animal Welfare seminar, ‘Zoo licensing – is the regulatory regime working?,’ on Wednesday, November 30 November, 5.30pm – 7pm, in the House of Commons. The speakers include Andrew Rosindell MP, Chair, All Party Parliamentary Group on Zoos and Aquariums… Read More


Martin Lacey from the Great British Circus spoke out in support of animals performing in circuses but refused access to the BBC to film the animals in his care. A move which could be seen to be audacious or naive (or both) given that the House of Commons was about to debate a motion calling… Read More


Bee Friedlander, my colleague at the Animals and Society Institute, chronicles the growing awareness of animal welfare at her local zoo in Detroit. She writes, Today the Detroit Zoo has no animal acts. The animals are not given names. Habitats are designed with care. In 2004, as an example of walking the walk as well… Read More


Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent South, Robert Flello, is promoting a Private Members Bill, Use of Wild Animals in Circuses, in the House of Commons in the British Parliament. The chances of this bill becoming law are not good. Generally, Private Members Bill do not become law unless they have the Government’s support. The Conservative-led British Government opposes a ban… Read More


Remember in April I commented on press reports that the Conservative-led coalition government was set to ban wild animals from performing in circuses? I expressed reservation that this, indeed, would be the case. Well, it turns out I was correct or, at least, will be proved to be correct, if the latest press report is… Read More


Animal activists across the world via the Web are rushing to report the UK government will ban animals in circuses following on from a report in the Daily Express, which says Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman has been persuaded that forcing elephants, tigers, lions, camels and other exotic creatures to perform tricks for audiences is wrong… Read More


BBC report the Northampton Police and RSPCA are investigating the beating of elephant Anne at Bobby Roberts Super Circus. What a shame the last Labour government didn’t have the conviction to deal with the issue of animals in circuses when it had the chance. Perhaps the ConDem Coalition will act. Stranger things have happened.… Read More


Today is the anniversary of the day when the elephant, Topsy, was electrocuted by Thomas Edison in New York in 1903 before a crowd of 1,500 spectators, who each paid 10 cents to watch. Topsy was an Asian elephant who became a dangerous embarrassment to one of America’s first amusement parks on Coney Island. Tormented… Read More


The Guardian published a powerful article, “Why do we put up with deaths in horseracing?” by Elisabeth Ribbans, on its Comment is Free Web site. The article references Animal Aid’s excellent campaign which is cataloguing death and injuries to race horses. Over the past three years Animal Aid has recorded more than 500 fatalities on… Read More


One example of the Labour Government’s action on animal welfare which can be described as a “dollar short and a day late” is its policy on wild animals in circuses. It is, of course, to be welcomed that Jim Fitzpatrick MP, Minister of State for Food, Farming and Environment (DEFRA), stated on March 25, 2010.… Read More


A Tourette’s-afflicted woman is suing her brother for kicking her out of a shiva service in 2007, but her brother claims she had to be ejected after saying “F–k the rabbi.” Karen Feld filed a $110 million federal lawsuit against her brother—Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus boss Kenneth Feld—after her sibling allegedly had… Read More