Animal Emotions

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Trapped Wolf Used for Target Practice

Wolf torture continues and is praised by some while critics are threatened.

Wolves remain in the crosshairs and the teeth of leghold traps in the Northern Rockies (see and). Let me say upfront that I apologize for posting this brief alert, but it's essential that people who don't know about what's happening learn about the barbaric treatment of wolves, and also for the skeptics to see it up close and personal if they can stand it. 

You can read about the story of a trapped and tortured wolf in a short essay in Earth Island Journal. It contains graphic language and pictures. A man who calls himself Pinching, who did the dirty deed, claimed the wolf will "make me a good wall hanger." Another person commented, "That's a dandy! Keep at it." This story and the posted comments say a lot about the enormous variation in human attitudes toward other animals and remains a topic of interest to those who study this aspect of human behavior. 

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I hope this story will get people who are indifferent to, or ignorant of, what's really happening to take action to stop such heinous behavior. No living being deserves to be treated this way. I'd like to believe that no one would do this to a dog or allow it to be done, and I'm sure that if the wolf were a dog people would be outraged. This isn't merely an "animal rights" issue, it's a matter of decency, and many hunters have come out strongly against the wanton, intentional, and egregious  torture of wolves and other animals. 

Update: I've been told that "Pinching" has been identified as Josh Bransford, a USFS employee, and you can read more about this and other issues about wolves here and here. You can also sign a petition to stop the torture of wolves here

The teaser image of "Pinching" and the wolf he trapped is here.

Marc Bekoff, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

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