USDA removes inspection reports and information from website

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Animal advocates were stunned on Friday when the U.S. Department of Agriculture abruptly removed inspection reports and other relevant information from their website about the treatment of animals at research facilities, zoos, dog breeders and other facilities. According to a statement by the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the organization cited a “comprehensive review” of court rulings and privacy laws “based on our commitment to being transparent … and maintaining the privacy rights of individuals.”

According to Science, henceforth going forward, people wanting access to the information will need to file a Freedom of Information Act request. The same goes for inspection reports under the Horse Protection Act, which prohibits injuring horses’ hooves or legs for show. Those requests can take years to be approved.

“We remain equally committed to being transparent and responsive to our stakeholders’ informational needs, and maintaining the privacy rights of individuals with whom we come in contact,” the statement said.

In the past, journalists, animal welfare advocates and concerned citizens have used the information to monitor the treatment of animals at circuses, in medical and scientific laboratories using animals and the treatment of animals at zoos. Much of the information available to the public was useful when proving egregious violations. The reports apply to 7813 facilities that keep animals covered by the law.

In addition, the public had been able to use the online database to find information referring to dog breeders. According to the Washington Post, seven states currently require stores to source puppies from breeders with clear inspection reports from the USDA. Humane societies have condemned this new secrecy contending the removal of the information will now allow animal abuse to go unchecked.

“The USDA action cloaks even the worst puppy mills in secrecy and allows abusers of Tennessee walking horses, zoo animals and lab animals to hide even the worst track records in animal welfare,” state John Goodwin, senior director of the Humane Society’s Stop Puppy Mills Campaign, which uses federal records, and state inspection reports to publish dog breeding operations cited for welfare violations.

Many animal breeding facilities, popularly known as “puppy mills” have extensive histories of animal abuse resulting in horrific animal suffering. It is not known whether the new Trump administration ordered these changes, and it is not known if the removal is temporary or permanent, however businesses dealing with animals have consistently complained about animal protection groups. The Humane Society of the United States said in a statement:

“This action benefits no one, except facilities who have harmed animals and don’t want anyone to know.”

(Photo of puppy mill by HSUS)

Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook.

24 replies
  1. maxiemom says:

    Great. Well, Marni and all of you other trump supporters got your wish. He’s picked a pro-puppy mill animal abuse piece of trash to head the Dept of Agriculture, and this is a sign that if confirmed we will get EXACTLY what people like me warned you about. Great. YOU voted for this POS. Thanks a lot. You said you love animals. NOPE. You hate people more, and don’t give a rat’s ass about animals no matter what you say or you couldn’t have voted for someone with the kind of record this scumbag had before he ever reached the White House over someone (Hillary) whose record was almost perfect.

      • pennysdachshund says:

        It is starting to look ( real early in the game that Trump) wants to be a monarch not the Peoples President!!! he also has not pets, and I would venture to say has NO USE FOR ANY4LEGGED ANIMAL … Look at his family they all have to be A+ quality , looks , style, dress… God forbid a pair of levis and a plaid shirt with a pair of roper boots… No it was clear to normal down to earth people this was not going to work out unless you shopped at 5th Av. at Sax , Tiffiny’s , no normal people who purchase JC Penney’s are of NO interest to him…. in the social setting, or as many who voted for himmm … He wants to be a Monarch!

      • Barkley's Mom says:

        I guess it depends on what “people” he want’s to be president for. Certainly not the majority of us that are struggling to make ends meet, he will have we the tax payers paying for his foolish “wall”. All I have seen from him so far is making policies that are hateful and making the US the laughing stock of the world. Someone disagrees with him and he carries on like a two year old having a tantrum. A real winner we have here for President. I personally am afraid of what will happen in the next 4 years. I certainly haven’t seen anything out of him so far to applaud!

      • maxiemom says:

        You and pennysdachshund are so right! It’s frightening to me how people could vote for this con man who’s so out of step with themselves and think he has any intention of doing one thing for them, when his intentions are clearly just the opposite.

  2. barbara stichinsy says:

    It’s bad enough how farm animals bleed and suffer b ow they voted to cover that up too.Theres enough cruelty and abuse on farms now that’s all covered up to the public now they’ve voted to cover it ALL up. We must not let this cruelty to God’s creatures go on we must to something to fight their suffering.

  3. pennysdachshund says:


  4. Barkley's Mom says:

    If it wasn’t the Trump administration that ordered this, then who was it? Why are they protecting the people hurting and abusing animals?

    • pennysdachshund says:

      YOU KNOW a lady named Rosemary jumped down me this am for “BASHING the abuse, neglect, dumping of so many, many senior, and young pets by Southern California people…. Stating I needed to shut up and do something about the animals, instead of complaining…. I see in our own state our Republican representatives , House and Senate, both State and National… last fall I wrote them all about WHY the Beastility law is still on the books in Wyoming !!! We are one of 17 states where this is STILL Legal,,, Wow the first STATE of Give women the RIGHT to vote…. I never heard a word for ONE OF THEM!!!

      • Barkley's Mom says:

        I happened to see that post by Rosemary and wondered how far she has gotten doing the things she so vehemently was telling you to do. “Spend time writing to, and calling, your state legislators and convincing them to pass strict STATE laws with greater punishments. Convince them that cruelty to animals is the first step toward cruelty to children, spouses, elderly. When you want something done by elected officials you must make it worth their while. It must help people, rather than animals because animals cannot vote, (if they could, we would have much better governments!!) and most politicians are interested only in keeping their jobs!” she says, I say good luck! I too have written to my state legislators and the only response I have ever gotten was from our state Congressman when I was asking for legislation to pay for benefits for retired military dogs. I was told “We have more important things to spend money on” Thank you Congressman Reed, U.S. Representative for New York’s 23rd District, Republican party. Our local shelter works tirelessly on trying to put Amish Puppy Mills out of business in the area and everyone that gets shut down, our legislatures will allow another one to open. I never have gotten any response concerning animal rights from our representatives and don’t believe that they even care. It’s apparent by the punishments handed down by judges concerning animal abuse. She makes it sound so easy, vote them out, do you really think I AM voting for these politicians?

  5. Laura Williams says:

    Help the aborted babies instead of puppies. Plan Parenthood are murderers and you worry about animals? Yall are to funny.

    • maxiemom says:

      Yet another right winger who cares NOTHING for the living of any kind, only people who are not here. You vote to kill help for WORKING FAMILIES to eat and take care of the medical needs of their families, yet all you care about is children you’d vote to basically allow to die, starve, and suffer once they’re born. You people are the worst kind of hypocrites. No compassion nor empathy of any kind, as evidenced by your lack of concern for the MOST vulnerable among us, our pets. Until you learn what a heart is, along with compassion and empathy, you have nothing legitimate to say about anything on this subject.

      • pennysdachshund says:

        HOW very RIGHT YOU ARE!!! Being a Nurse for over 25 years…I TOTALLY believe The RIGHT OF CHOICE IS a NECESSITY!!! I have seen so many , many , many, cases of neglect, and disinterest, abandonment, death of infants and the mother’s who tried to self abort…… Why force an infant into a world that is not wanted…… our pets only have us to be the advocate for their lives…

  6. Marcia Scruggs says:

    This is part of the growing information black-out under our new administration. We will be kept more and more in the dark, so that they can implement policies that will benefit the rich and harm the poor and voiceless, including animals. The future of the environment is at stake, too. We cannot allow this to happen. Protest to your congressional members.

  7. Cyndi says:

    The abuse, the neglect, the cruelty to animals, day after day NEEDS TO STOP. Animals deserve to be loved and cared for, NOT ABUSED AND KILLED. GIVE ANIMAL ABUSERS THE MAX PUNISHMENT.


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  1. […] been reposting some of the tens of thousands of animal welfare documents previously removed from its website.  In an official announcement from APHIS they […]

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