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Did you know that....

ANIMAL BEHAVIOR AND INTELLIGENCE

Human and chimpanzee brains are remarkably similar in circuitry, and the genes of humans and chimpanzees are 98.4% identical.

Captive elephants have been known to unscrew bolts to dismantle their cages.

Dogs are instinctive joiners, which is why when one dog barks, dogs all over the neighborhood start to bark.

Certain monkeys know how to lie. Male vervet monkeys have been observed attracting females by uttering the vervet word for "food," when in fact they have nothing to offer except a twig or leaf.

New research indicates that parrots can master complex intellectual concepts better than children under the age of five. One parrot in a study could name 50 different objects, and differentiate colors, numbers up to eight, and the concepts of same and different.

Scientists who have successfully taught pigs to play video games have concluded that pigs may be as smart as chimpanzees and other non-human primates.

COMPANION ANIMALS

About 22% of the world's catch of tuna goes into cat food in the United States.

When a dog licks you with a straight tongue, he's saying "I Love You."

Of people with companion animals, 18% sleep with them.

The most common cause of ill health in canines is obesity. Approximately 60% of all adult dogs are overweight or will become overweight due to lack of physical activity and overfeeding. Much like humans, the medical consequences of obesity include liver, heart, and orthopedic problems. As little as a few extra pounds on a small dog can lead to health-related complications.

The domestic dog dates back more than 50,000 years.

Only 2 out of 10 kittens born in the U.S. ever find a life-long home.

According to a survey, 90% of dog caregivers speak to their dogs like humans, walk or run with their dogs, and take pictures of them; 72% take their pups for car fides and discuss the latest behavior of Lucky with their friends; 51% hang Christmas stockings for their dogs; 41% watch movies and TV with their pooches; 29% sign Rover's name to greeting cards; and more than 20% buy homes with their dogs in mind, and arrange the furniture so Fifi can see outside.

Frederick the Great owned an estimated 30 greyhounds. His love of these animals led him to coin the saying: "the more I see of men, the more I love my dogs."

Lewis and Clark traveled with a 150-pound Newfoundland mined "Seaman." This pooch was a respected member of the expedition, and his antics were included in the extensive diaries of the these famous explorers.

Only 4% of lost cats who enter U.S. animal shelters are returned to their caregivers.

As many as 64% of animals who arrive at U.S. shelters are euthanized. That's more than 10,000 cats and dogs killed a day, seven days per week.

Of  dog caregivers, 25% keep a snapshot of their animal in their purse or wallet.

In the last 4,000 years, no new animals have been domesticated.

Nationwide, grandparents annually spend an average of $195.24 on their companion animals and $178.68 on their grandchildren.

Recent studies have shown that interacting with companion animals may speed recovery from illness, reduce stress, and pro?mote family bonding.

Cost of raising a medium-size dog to the age of eleven: $6,400.

The petstore industry is now a $25 billion a year market in the U.S. Every year Americans spend more on cat food than on baby food.

In 1998, there were 56.8 million dogs and 71.3 million cats in U.S. households.

The petfood industry reported retail sales in 1999 of over $11 billion in the U.S.

MARINE LIFE

An estimated 70% of global fish stocks are "over-exploited,' "fully exploited," "depleted," or recovering from prior over-exploitation.

At least 44,000 albatrosses are entangled by tuna long-line fish?eries every year.

Sea otter fur is the thickest fur of any animal. It has up to 1 million hairs per square inch -- a human has only about 20,000 hairs on his or her entire head.

As much as 8.8 million tons of oil enter the ocean every year as the result of human activity.

ANIMALS USED IN AGRICULTURE

Meat-linked diseases cause 60% of American deaths.

In 1998, more than 9 billion animals were killed for food in the U.S. These included:
    8.47 billion "meat" chickens
    446 million "egg" chickens
    297 million turkeys
    119 million pigs
    41 million cows and calves
    24 million ducks
    5 million sheep

The U.S. slaughters approximately 100,000 horses each year for export to Europe and Asian for human consumption.

Number of acres of U.S. forests that have been cleared for crop-land to produce a meat-centered diet: 260 million.

Cattle produce nearly 1 billion tons of organic waste each year.

According to a report from the Institute of Medicine, livestock use accounts for roughly half of the 25,000 tons of antibiotics produced in the U.S. each year.

When you reduce your consumption of meat, dairy products, and eggs by 50%, you decrease your risk of heart attack by 45%.

In a lifetime, the average Ameri?can meat-eater consumes 2,600 animals, including 2,450 chicken, 118 turkeys, 33 pigs and sheep, and 12 cattle and calves.

According to the U.S. General Accounting Office, more plant species in the U.S. have been eliminated or threatened by live?stock grazing than by any other cause.

Nearly half of the total amount of water used annually in the U.S. goes to grow feed and provide drinking water for cattle and other livestock.

In nature, cows live 20-25 years, but a typical factory-farmed cow is used up in three or four years. Then it's off to the slaughterhouse.

WILDLIFE / ENVIRONMENT

$37 million from taxpayers fund the trapping, poisoning, gassing, and gunning of nearly one million wild animals and birds each year in the name of "livestock protection" and "pest control"

Almost two-thirds of all large mammal species are threatened or endangered in the lower 48 states. Less than 10% of all endangered and threatened species in the U.S. are improving.

About 20% of all endangered and threatened species are harmed by grazing.

The illegal international trade in wildlife is estimated to be worth $5 billion annually.

HUNTING

When all costs are considered deer-hunting costs about $25 per pound of meat.

Hunters kill 100 million animals in the U.S. each year. These include:
    25 million mourning doves
    16 million squirrels
    13 million quail
    11 million rabbits
    10 million ducks
      2 million woodchucks

In a 1995 Press survey, 51% agreed that it is always wrong to hunt an animal for sport.

While only 6% of Americans hunt, 31% participate in some type of non-consumptive wild-life-related recreation. Non-consumptive participants spend about $38 billion each year.

Up to 50% of deer struck with arrows by archery hunters are not recovered but left to die in the woods.

Recreational hunting is allowed on 76 of the 550 units -about 14% - of the National Wildlife Refuge System.

TRAPPING / FUR

3.5 to 4.0 million animals were trapped and killed for the commercial fur trade during the 1996/97 trapping season.

Less than 0.006% of the American population participates in trapping. The average annual income for trappers in the U.S. is less than $250, after equipment costs and license fees are subtracted.

Every year in the U.S., steel-jaw leghold traps cripple or kill approximately 5 million non-target animals -- domestic dogs and cats, owls, squirrels, chip?munks, blue jays, swans, deer, and golden eagles, as well as threatened and endangered species.

To make a 40-inch fur coat requires the skins of 16 coyotes, or 18 lynx, or 60 minks, or 45 opossums, or 20 otters, or 42 red foxes, or 40 raccoons, or 50 sables, or 8 seals, or 50 muskrats, or 15 beavers.

In a 1995 Press survey, 59% agreed it is always wrong to hunt an animal for fur.

Trapping is allowed on 280 units (more than half) of the National Wildlife Refuge System. Steel-jaw leghold traps are used on 140, or half, of these 280 refuges.

ANIMALS USED IN SCIENCE

Each year, an estimated 27 million animals in the U.S. are used in research, testing, and education. Over 2 million ani?mals are killed in dissection classes.

In a 1995 Press survey, 67% agreed that it is seldom or never right to test cosmetics on animals.

There are presently nearly 500 alternatives available to dissection for science education.

Roughly 50,000 primates are currently used for animal research in the U.S.

ANIMAL ABUSE

In a 1999 Decision Research survey, 74% agreed that an animal's right to live free of suffering should be just as important as a person's right to live free of suffering.

There's a dear link between animal abuse and domestic violence. In a 1995 Wisconsin survey, 4 out of 5 victims of domestic violence in homes with companion animals said their pets were also abused.

Wisconsin made some form of animal cruelty a felony offense in 1986. Since then, 27 states have passed similar laws.