Category: dogs

Food stamps for pets: Senator Mitch McConnell responds

By Lynn Hamilton


Food stamps for pets may seem like liberal folly, but conservatives with a long view should also support it.

The compassion argument

The main reason to support food stamps for companion animals is, of course, compassion for the animals. And for the people who are emotionally attached to those animals. The poorest pet owner will gladly give up her own dinner to feed her pet.

The conservative argument

But what if you have no compassion? What if you think there’s some shining, divine line between humans and the rest of the animal world that seriously makes dogs and cats of no consequence?

In that case, too, there are still some good reasons to support food stamps for Fido.

Loose cannons adopt one cat or one dog, and now they have a reason to show up to work, quit taking drugs, and buy a house. Animals change your life, because now you have someone you have to be responsible for.

Just read “A Cat Named Bob.” Here’s a drug addict who went into a state-supported, kinda gruesome, methadone-based addiction program and stuck it out religiously for the sake of his cat. Food stamps for pets is the road to fewer food stamps for people.

Today’s action. Please sign the petition to extend food stamps to pets.

UPDATE: United States Senator Mitch McConnell responds

United States Senator Mitch McConnell responded to the AnimalRightsChannel’s post asking for food stamps to be extended to pets. He indicates that the legislation that supports food stamps will be up for authorization this year. He does not indicate that extension of the service to pets is out of the question.

Dear Ms. Hamilton;

Thank you for contacting me regarding federal food assistance programs.   Hearing from you helps me better represent Kentucky in the United States Senate.

I believe too many Americans find themselves trapped within a cycle of poverty and hunger.   Often times, Americans, from small children to the elderly, are forced to choose between food and life’s other necessities such as health care and shelter.   In response, the federal government administers programs to help low-income Americans meet their most basic needs.   These support programs include federal nutrition assistance initiatives, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which were most recently reauthorized through the Agricultural Act of 2014 (P.L.113-79), commonly referred to as the Farm Bill.

In your correspondence, you mentioned your thoughts on expanding SNAP eligible purchases to include pet food.   As you may know, SNAP benefits may only be used to purchase food for the eligible recipient’s household to eat – not for the purchase of non-food items such as alcohol, tobacco, household supplies, or pet food. You may be interested to know that the Farm Bill and many of its programs, including SNAP, are due to be authorized in 2018.   The reauthorization of the Farm Bill will serve as an opportunity to review programs, like SNAP, and evaluate any reforms that may be necessary for their future success and efficacy.   Please rest assured that as a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, I will keep your thoughts in mind throughout this process.

Thank you for contacting me about this important matter.   If you would like to receive periodic updates about federal legislative issues, please sign up for my eNewsletter at, become a fan of my page on Facebook by visiting or follow my office on Twitter @McConnellPress.





Turns out Britain Doesn’t Admit Animals Feel Pain

UPDATE: The Animal Rights Channel thought that Britain’s Animal Welfare (Sentencing and recognition of sentience) bill was a no brainer, but it seems Britain’s Parliament did not. Members have now told Prime Minister Michael Gove that the new bill goes too far.

They don’t agree that the law should recognize animal sentience. 

I think we all know that animals feel pain and pleasure, or we should know that. If you’re still waffling, take your neighbor’s dog for a nice long walk. You will quickly see that animals have a range of feelings and sensations.

If you live in the UK, would you please sign this petition and the one below it:

If you live outside the UK, but you are counting on Great Britain to lead the way on recognizing animal sentience, please sign this petition to save the animal sentience part of Gove’s proposed bill:

ORIGINAL ARTICLE published in January:

Great Britain’s Michael Gove has admitted that animals can feel pain and “enshrined” that into law, according to all major UK news vehicles.

Gove, the UK’s environment secretary, has been widely photographed with a white fluffy dog in his arms.

This happened because animal rights advocates got a whiff that British Parliament was getting ready to jettison a European Union law that recognizes animal sentience.

Admittedly, the European Union law is foundational for preventing animal cruelty, but it does almost nothing to protect wild animals from loss of habitat.

Nevertheless, animal rights champions should support the new bill while continuing to ask for more stringent protections of animals.

What you can do

UPDATE: You can still read the bill, but the comment period on this bill has been closed. Did anyone in Parliament read the comments? And where is the comments summary?

Read the bill here:

Sing this petition: