Humane society connects families to pets

The Capital Area Humane Society held a fundraiser in Grand Ledge earlier this month. The proceeds of the fundraiser will go toward its operations and helping animals in the shelter’s care find their forever home. Kelly Chesser of Grand Ledge is one of the many who have adopted a furry friend from the Capital Area Humane Society.

New animal abuse laws in Michigan

Starting this month, new legislation in Michigan will more than double the penalty for heinous crimes involving animals. “We do have a lot of cases where an animal is either strangled to the point of defecating on itself or passing out or severely maned so their ears are cut, or they’re beaten with a bat… maybe tied up by their leash,” said Ingham County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Nattalie Macomber. The state of Michigan is taking a stand against these types of crimes with stricter penalties and Macomber believes this is a good time to start changing the narrative. “The culture is really changing and the education about what animal abuse actually is has really evolved in the last few years,” she said.

In Williamston, running a business, being a mother is a juggling act

The house at 5108 Barton Road in Williamston looks like any other house. There are trees out front, a few cars parked in the driveway and a garage door wide open, giving people a glimpse of the backyard. All seems normal until the sound of dogs, chickens and alpacas fill the air. Yes, alpacas. In the backyard of this home lies Circle 6 Alpacas, a fiber production farm that houses 30 alpacas, one goat, three horses, two dogs, five cats and 10 chickens.

New grants will promote animal wellbeing

By JORDAN BRADLEY
Capital News Service
LANSING – Kittens, puppies and grants, oh my! The selection process for 2015 grant recipients of the Michigan Animal Welfare Fund has begun. “We’ve received at least 65 proposals,” said Debbie Mulvaney, who oversees the selection process for the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. “There are some great ideas turned in, so we’re anxious to get started.”
Reviewing the proposals is a lengthy process, she said. “There are a lot of people with a lot of needs.”

The recipients will be selected by Dec.

Lawmakers move to repeal outdated law requiring police to kill unlicensed dogs

By NICK STANEK
Capital News Service
LANSING — Officers would no longer be required to euthanize unlicensed dogs if a bill sent to the governor’s office is signed. The bill would remove a requirement that is rarely followed, said Rep. Margaret O’Brien, R-Portage, the bill’s sponsor. It changes an antiquated part of the dog law of 1919 that legally requires officers to euthanize unlicensed dogs. In other words, dog owners who fail to get their dogs registered risk having their dogs killed. “We never do that,” said Wendy Frosland, an officer from Mackinac County Animal Control.

Proposal advances to let public pet bear cubs

By JUSTINE McGUIRE
Capital News Service
LANSING – Oswald Bear Ranch in Newberry has allowed the public to interact with bear cubs for 15 years, but Michigan law and animal rights activists would end the practice unless a bill passes to make the activity legal. Oswald’s has violated a 2000 state “large carnivore” law for more than a decade, but was unaware of the situation until last summer, said Carl Oswald, who works at the ranch and is owner’s son. It immediately ended public interaction with its bear cubs last June. “After that, the cubs would look at people, wondering what they had done wrong and why no one would come in and pet them,” Oswald said. Sen. Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba, took up the issue and got a bill passed in December to allow petting of bear cubs up to 36 weeks old or 90 pounds.

Look but don't touch baby wildlife, experts say

By JENNIFER CHEN
Capital News Service
LANSING – Nature has its own rules. One of them is: protect baby animals by leaving them with their mothers. Parents will abandon their babies if they are removed from their natural environment, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR). In addition, some wild animals have diseases or parasites that can be passed to humans or pets, DNR said. “Nearly 1,000 wild animals are rescued by licensed rehabilitators each year in the state.