Friday, April 29, 2016

Why Are We So Quick To Dance With The Devil?

The news out of New York City gets worse by the day.  A group Ed Sayres created and funded (NYCLASS or New Yorkers for Clean Livable and Safe Streets) to destroy a political candidate and a traditional animal business is now under federal and state investigation.

This is very serious.

I've spent the last decade of my life opposing Ed Sayres and the lies and misinformation he was handsomely paid to produce to attack all animal enterprises.  You'll have to forgive me if I'm skeptical of his alleged change of heart now that he claims to be in favor of pet shops and commercial pet breeders.
Jay Kitchener testifying in opposition
to LD 335 in Maine. Photo Credit:
Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal


When I fought hard last year in my state of Maine against LD 335, a bill to prohibit sales of dogs and cats from out of state commercial breeders, I never once saw Ed Sayres in the room to testify and oppose LD 335.  What I do recall is the first legislative conference call we had with Ed Sayres where his first statement was, “Pet shop owners need to have a Plan B."

What was Ed's Plan B, I wondered?

Why are pet stores so quick to partner with the man who still says, "Adoption should always be everyone's first option"? See his recent testimony before Arizona House Agriculture, Water and Lands Committee where he states it here.

Although Ed Sayres has left the sleazy and controversial ASPCA in Manhattan, the propaganda he produced while he was employed there has had its intended effect.  The elephants are gone from the circus, and the orcas will soon be gone from Sea World.  Do you really think it's going to be any different with dogs in pet shops?

Perhaps the day Ed apologizes to the Feld family (owners of Ringling Brothers Circus) and tries to refund some of the more than $20 million they spent to fight him, then I'll feel a little better.  Or perhaps the day Ed apologizes to Sea World I'll feel a little better.  But it will never bring back the elephants or the orcas.
Why are pet stores so quick to partner with the man
who says, "Adoption should always be everyone's first option."


If Ed Sayres had such a change of heart after a decade of serving as a highly-paid executive with a national stage, what do you think it would take for him to have a change of heart and return to his roots?  I'm not convinced that if Wayne Pacelle of the Humane Society of the United States, or Ingrid Newkirk of PETA offered Ed Sayres a pile of cash to bat for their teams that he would turn it down. Why should he?

After spending several years putting together the controversial political hit group NYCLASS while still at the helm of the equally controversial ASPCA in New York, Sayres walked away from those organizations in 2013.  

Then in 2014 Sayres appeared as the president of the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC) in Washington, DC—the very group Sayres had been handsomely paid to defeat for a decade.

Sayres served at the helm of PIJAC in 2015, then quietly became a “special advisor” to them in 2016.  

There’s a problem here.  Since 2013 more than 120 communities across the nation have passed the radical legislation to prevent pet shops from selling breeder’s animals—the very same radical legislation that Ed Sayres spent his career at ASPCA preparing to unleash on the country.  This legislation is the same all over the nation.  This cookie cutter legislation prohibits pet shops from selling animals from licensed and inspected kennels and mandates that pet shops may only sell animals from unknown sources provided by shelters and rescue groups like the ASPCA.  This legislation comes straight from the playbook of ASPCA and the other controversial animal rights groups like the Humane Society of the United States and PETA.  

I don’t believe for a minute that Ed Sayres had an epiphany in 2014 and decided to join the very group defending pet shops and commercial breeders from the same legislation Sayres spent a decade crafting.

I do believe, Ed Sayres did not join PIJAC to prevent the government-forced transition from purposefully and professionally bred pets in pet shops.  Ed Sayres joined PIJAC to facilitate the government-forced transition to only randomly sourced animals in pet shops.  Was this the “plan B” to which Sayres referred in the first conference call with pet shop owners nationwide?

To this day Sayres defends his position against the New York City horse carriage industry. To this day he defends his misguided positions against the circus and Sea World.  Are we expected to believe he has truly had a change of heart when it comes to professional commercial dog kennels?  I’m not buying it.

Now that both the United States Attorney and the Manhattan District Attorney have subpoenaed the group NYCLASS that Sayres helped create, it’s a fair question to wonder if the mushrooming investigation will extend to Sayres at some point.  If it does, then the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council will have egg on its face, and Ed Sayres might want to have his own “Plan B.”

"When he asks you to dance you had better say never because a dance with the devil could last you forever."


Written by Jay Kitchener who is a leading advocate in the purebred dog industry. Jay has been on the forefront in preserving the rights of dog breeders and animal owners, and recently helped in turning back an effort to ban retail pet sales in Maine. Jay is now serving as the New England Regional Director for The Cavalry Group.




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