News from Capitol Hill

brought to you by the Society for Animal Protective Legislation

Inhumane Trapping Prevention Act
H.R. 3442

A 2-year-old cat named Princess was playing outdoors when she suddenly found herself in agonizing pain after stepping into a steel jaw leghold trap. With every ounce of strength she could muster and the heavy trap still clamped to her right paw, Princess dragged herself to the front porch of her home. The cat was rushed to a veterinary clinic where a portion of her paw was amputated. Unfortunately, the number of animals who suffer this same fate or worse each year is in the millions and continues to rise.

Due to its non-selective nature, the steel jaw leghold trap not only causes endless suffering to intended targets, but to pets, deer, birds, endangered species and even children. Eighty-eight nations have already banned the trap in recognition of its inherent cruelty. Representative Nita Lowey (D-NY) and Christopher Shays (R-CT) introduced the Inhumane Trapping Prevention Act to end the use of steel jaw leghold traps in the United States. Over 30 members of Congress are already cosponsoring the bill; please contact your Representative to urge his or her cosponsorship today.

Horse Update

As we go to press, the Senate voted 69-28 on an amendment to end horse slaughter for one fiscal year, following the lead of the House of Representatives. Next it must be considered by a conference committee before going to the President. Senators John Ensign (R-NV) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA) will soon reintroduce the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act to ban horse slaughter in the United States forever.

We are bending every effort to ensure the anti-horse slaughter amendment's adoption. To find out how your Senators voted on the measure, sponsored by Senators Ensign and Robert C. Byrd (D-WV), please visit our website.


Please contact your legislators on behalf of these important bills:


  • Urge your Representative to support H.R. 3442, the Inhumane Trapping Prevention Act.
  • Ask your Senators and Representative to support the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act.

  • * Address Representatives:
    The Honorable (full name)
    US House of Representatives
    Washington, DC 20515
    * Address Senators:
    The Honorable (full name)
    US Senate
    Washington, DC 20510 To find your legislators

In Memory of the Honorable James H. Scheuer

During the more than a quarter century that he served in Congress, Representative James H. Scheuer (D-NY) was known as an activist on environmental, housing and consumer issues, according to The Washington Post. But Scheuer, who died on Aug. 30 at the age of 85, was best known to us for his staunch opposition to the use of steel jaw leghold traps, which he called "an atrocious act against all of nature." He was a sponsor of early legislation to end use of these "insidious devices." We will miss this outspoken humanitarian.

Passage of CAFTA Puts Animals in Danger

In late July, the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) passed by an incredibly narrow margin in the House of Representatives. Its ratification is in the interest of large corporations, many of which contribute to the inhumane treatment of animals. One of CAFTA's biggest disgraces is its ability to trump the rights of family farmers in the name of agribusiness profits. The practice of factory farming will flourish under this agreement, harming animals raised for food and the livelihood of Central and North American humane family farmers. While factory farming is common in the United States, this will be a new development in Central America. Environmental laws will be gutted as well, causing habitat loss and other problems for countless species of wildlife.