A week after the narrow passage of the HSUS-backed dog breeding measure in Missouri, Proposition B, President Wayne Pacelle of the Humane Society of the U.S. published an “open letter” on his blog criticizing the Missouri Farm Bureau’s campaign against the measure.
“This agreement should not provide a liscense for gross misrepresentations of fact. And that’s exactly what the Missouri Farm Bureau was responsible for during this campaign.”
Pacelle complained to Brownfield last week that the Missouri Farm Bureau falsely claimed that existing state regulations on dog breeding are sufficient, that the HSUS wants to eliminate pet ownership, and, that HSUS wants to end animal agriculture.
Missouri Farm Bureau Public Affairs Director Estill Fretwell calls Pacelle’s complaints a publicity stunt.
“If you look at their agenda this is simply the first step of HSUS and Mr. Pacelle to try to regulate animal agriculture in the state. It’s his spin on what he wants to try to put out, but again this is just a tactic on his part to get publicity.”
Most troubling, says Pacelle, are the claims from agriculture groups that HSUS spends less than one-percent of its funds on pet care.
“If these are honorable people at the Missouri Farm Bureau they will cease and desist making false statements. HSUS is the largest animal care provider in the United States. No other group cares for more animals than HSUS.”
Fretwell says it’s a well known tactic of Pacelle to demonize ag groups. He says Missouri Farm Bureau stands up for and defends legitimate farmers and dog breeders who treat their animals humanely.
“Mr. Pacelle – and HSUS – has an agenda as we have seen in other states to go far beyond that and try to regulate animal agriculture in a way we have problems with.”
Fretwell says the Missouri Farm Bureau hopes lawmakers take a look at what changes can be made to Proposition B to protect the state’s legitimate dog breeders from going out of business under the measure’s strict requirements.