Monday, February 18, 2008

We've been away & need to catch up

Americans are extremely sensitive to the mistreatment of animals -- even those we intend to eat. An undercover video showing crippled and sick animals being shoved with forklifts has led to the largest beef recall in the United States and a scramble to find out if any of the meat is still destined for school children's lunches. The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Sunday ordered the recall of 143 million pounds of beef from a Southern California slaughterhouse that is the subject of an animal-abuse investigation. The recall will affect beef products dating to Feb. 1, 2006, that came from Chino-based Westland/Hallmark Meat Co., the federal agency said. The company provided meat to various federal programs. Officials estimate that about 37 million pounds of the recalled beef went to school programs, but they believe most of the meat probably has already been eaten. "We don't know how much product is out there right now. We don't think there is a health hazard, but we do have to take this action," said Dr. Dick Raymond, USDA Undersecretary for Food Safety. ***** The only breed consistently among the nation's most popular dogs for nearly 100 years, a beagle had never won in the 100 times the Westminster Kennel Club had chosen a winner. That changed when judge J. Donald Jones pointed to this nearly 3-year-old package of personality. Baying and barking to his heart's delight, Uno lived up every bit to his name, becoming the first beagle to win best in show at the nation's biggest canine competition, the 2008 Westminster Dog Show. Uno beat out two neatly primped poodles, a top Sealyham terrier, a sleek Weimaraner, a lively Australian shepherd and a sprightly Akita. "He's perfect, he was a 10," Jones said. "He does cuteness well." ***** I guess CBS is looking for a "can't lose" idea for a popular TV show ... Dogs are popular, right? And reality shows are popular, so why not combine the two and make a reality show featuring dogs? CBS was looking for the most extraordinary teams of dogs and owners across the nation to compete for the title of "America's top dog." From purebreds to mutts, show dogs to stunt dogs, Pugs to Great Danes and agility dogs to dogs who dance the Tango - they wanted all types of talented canines. The winning team will walk away with bragging rights and a significant cash prize! Sorry, the deadline for entries was February 15. I wonder if anyone will watch it, other than friends and families of the contestants.

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