Pforzheimer Honors College alumni Allison Jimenez, now Senior Manager of Media and Communications for The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), gave a presentation called ‘Animals and You’ in Leinhard Lecture Hall on Wednesday, February 23, 2011.
Along with giving away freebies such as luggage tags and wristbands to raise awareness, Ms Jiminez opened with an explanation of the ASPCA and how it was founded by Henry Bergh in 1866. The anecdote boiled down to a wealthy man with no children or animals of his own, who founded the ASPCA as prevention against equine cruelty after witnessing the brutal beating of a carriage horse on the streets of New York.
The non-profit organization rescues and raises awareness about animal cruelty and is the oldest humane society in the United States. With over a million supporters around the country, Ms Jiminez stressed her love of her employment with the ASPCA. In fact, the ASPCA offers a wide range of jobs and is constantly looking for more help and new employees. Jiminez delved into not only her travels with her field, but what every single division of the organization entails from being in the spay/neuter truck to raiding puppy mills.
When most people want to purchase a dog or a cat the automatic response is to go to the pet store, but through her presentation, Ms Jiminez revealed how that is a wrong move. Animals from pet stores are obtained through what are known as ‘puppy mills,’ where puppies are bred by the thousands in complete squalor. Most of the dogs are not only cooped up in dirty cages, but are often sick when bought. The alternative to the pet store is a shelter, where if not adopted, the animals may be euthanized. Overpopulation is a growing issue the ASPCA is trying to fix, but in order to solve the overpopulation problem in the United States alone each individual would have to own fourteen animals!
Jiminez closed her presentation with the importance of adoption and for all pet owners: spay, neuter, spay!