Homes for Hounds

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This week, I'm going to stray a little bit from my typical niche and discuss something that's very near and dear to my heart. For those of you who follow me on social media know my husband and I have a beagle mix named Harper. She's a four year old loving goof ball who we've had for over two years and I cannot imagine our life without her. She has made such an impact on our life, especially for my husband for we adopted her during a very difficult time. This past year, we've discovered some incredibly difficult truths about hounds and I want to take the time to share it with you. A couple of months ago, we were at a friends house (don't worry we were incredibly safe respecting Covid-19 guidelines), and other guests were there visiting the roommate. One of the guests is a hunter and he confessed some horrible truths he has come across regarding hounds and other hunting dogs. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon in the hunting world for dogs that have "fulfilled their purpose" to be given up/surrendered. What's worse, is dogs that do not "live up to expectations" and cannot concentrate during hunting, they are often abandoned and/or painted with target circles as if to alert other hunters that these dogs are up for game. My husband and I believe that our dog Harper fell victim to the latter practice. We adopted Harper from a beagle rescue who only had her for a week before we adopted her, and aside from having a few accidents in the house from nervousness she was completely house trained. The only backstory we have on her is that she was found on the streets of North Carolina, no collar or chip, was picked up by animal control, and she was saved by the rescue the day she was to be euthanized. It breaks my heart to think that this may have happened to our little Harp, that she might have been bred to be a hunter, didn't live up to expectations, and was dumped.

I find these practices incredibly disgusting, inhumane, and should result in jail time. I am a firm believer that if you adopt an animal, you adopt them for life. You took on the responsibility, and you need to own up to it. If you want to adopt/buy a hound dog that's bred for hunting, or any dog that's bred for hunting, that's fine there's absolutely nothing wrong with that-however you should treat that dog with the same loyalty, love, and respect that the animal gives you. Please don't throw your animal away as if it's trash, they would do anything for you.

Another practice that it absolutely heart breaking and, quite frankly, should have ended a LONG time ago, is the practice of animal testing. Since becoming vegan, I started thinking to myself if there are items outside of food that are not considered vegan. In the past, I've seen several different hair and beauty products that state they are vegan and some products that state they are cruelty free, however I've never put much thought into it. I started to do my own research and the results are quite horrifying. Not only is this practice still going on, major brands that we know and love are participating in it. I was shocked and horrified coming to find a lot of the products that I've used for years test on animals and for that I am no longer a loyal customer. One app that I've recently discovered that has helped me immensely in discovering which brands are cruelty free and which ones are not is the Cruelty Cutter. Available for both IPhone and Android, this app is AMAZING and so incredibly easy to use. It utilizes a scanner and you scan the bar code on any item you're interested in and within seconds it tells you if this item is cruelty free or not. If the item is not cruelty free, it gives you the option to "bite back" to the company, which essentially means you file a complaint to that particular brand.

This is the result you would receive after scanning an item, unfortunately this product is not cruelty free and therefore gives you the option to either bite back or boycott. To protect this particular brand from any backlash I have decided to hide their identity.

Another option you have is to find it's cruelty-free alternative, which is what I primarily do. When you hit this option, you either have the choice to look it up by it's brand name or by category.

For this brand, I've chosen to search by category and to help better your results, it gives you a list of different categories that best match that item you've scanned. Since the mentioned item I've scanned is a moisturizer, I selected the body moisturizer option as highlighted below.

Once selected, you'll be directed to several different types of cruelty free brand alternatives that sell this type of product!

This app and company is associated with the Beagle Freedom Project, an organization based in California that is dedicated solely to rescuing beagles and other animals that have been used in animal testing labs. Unfortunately, beagles are most subject to animal testing due to their docile behavior; they are incredibly loving and trusting of humans so they are the easiest to "handle and control". I've been following this company for a couple of months now and I absolutely love and admire their work. They are a truly inspiring organization that does anything and everything to help rehabilitate these poor animals. The most amazing part is once these animals are rescued and rehabilitated, they are up for adoption! Not only can you adopt beagles, you can also adopt different breeds of dogs as well as pigs, goats, and other small animals such as bunnies that have ALL been rescued from labs.

Let's work together by ending animal testing all together by supporting brands that are cruelty free and please go and support Beagle Freedom Project and Cruelty Cutter for they really work hard to make a difference for our four legged friends. As always, peace and love 🕊🤍

Money can buy you a fine dog, but only love can make him wag his tail.
Kinky Friedman

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