WISCONSIN

We strive to advance protections for wildlife, companion animals, and farmed animals in Wisconsin.

wolf licking wolf friend_shutterstock
Mink looks out from cage at fur farm_Stefano Belacchi-We Animals Media
What We Do​

We strive to advance protections for wildlife, companion animals, and farmed animals in Wisconsin. We also work to educate and empower the public to address significant animal welfare issues in the state. To that end, we:

  • Partner with local animal-centric organizations to educate about and advocate for animals. These organizations include farm animal sanctuaries, state-level wildlife protection organizations, and shelters and rescues.

  • Attend and encourage the public to participate in legislative and agency hearings that directly and indirectly impact animal protections.

  • Participate in animal welfare events as a speaker on Animal Wellness Action’s and the Center for a Humane Economy’s priorities.

  • Are a resource for citizens with inquiries or concerns about animal policies in Wisconsin and nationally.

  • Offer rewards for information on animal cruelty and wildlife poaching incidents in Wisconsin.

  • Conduct webinars and podcasts on animal protection topics.

Our State Director

Paul Collins has been with Animal Wellness Action as Wisconsin State Director since 2021. A lifelong animal advocate born and raised in Wisconsin, he holds a Bachelor of Science in Disaster and Emergency Management from Upper Iowa University. He has been a public servant for law enforcement and higher education public safety agencies for over two decades. 

Collins also is a board member of Off the Table Farm Sanctuary near Westfield and volunteers at another state farm sanctuary. In 2019, he worked with the Wisconsin-based Alliance for Animals to help design and erect numerous billboards about how Wisconsin reimburses reckless hound hunters when wolves kill their dogs. He also has worked with wildlife rehabilitators to transport injured and orphaned wildlife for many years.

He lives with two rescue dogs and a cat from an abandoned barn litter.

Want to learn more or get involved with Animal Wellness Action in Wisconsin? Email paul@animalwellnessaction.org

TOP LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES FOR THE 132nd LEGISLATIVE SESSION

Wisconsin has the dubious distinction of being the largest “producer” of mink pelts in the nation, along with allowing some of the most cruel and barbaric methods of hunting, such as hounding. While we have often been on the defensive in recent years, our goal is to help move legislation and policy changes forward that promote animal welfare and protection.

  • AB137/SB138 establishes a statewide wolf population goal. We are against this bill and oppose the establishment of an arbitrary population cap on the already small Wisconsin wolf population. Governor Evers vetoed this bill.

  • AB512/SB545 relates to hunting wild animals with the aid of a dog, dog training on wild animals, and dog trialing on wild animals in the northern portion of the state. We are against all forms of hounding, but until the deplorable practice can be ended, these short timeframes that prohibit it in the northern part of the state are the only protections that breeding and nesting animals have in this area. Instead of eliminating this prohibition, we would like to see this prohibition on hound “training” expanded to the entire state. Governor Evers has vetoed this bill.

  • AB957/SB892 relates to preemption of certain local animal ordinances. This is an especially nefarious bill that seeks to block local jurisdictions from having their own animal welfare ordinances and environmental protections and from blocking the sale of animals or “products” from puppy mills, factory farms, or other cruel industries. Please read our letter to the editor of the Cap Times on this bill here. Governor Evers has vetoed this bill.

In 2024 and 2025, our goal is to work with the legislature and governor’s office to advance pro-animal proposals such as:

  • Ending the statutory requirement for a wolf hunting season to be held each year.

  • Remove the allowance for the use of dogs against wolves.

  • End the ridiculous payouts for hunting hounds that wolves kill.

  • Promoting greater oversight of puppy mills and other exploitative animal facilities.

Caged mink photo credit: Stefano Belacchi / We Animals Media

Ways to Take Action Now

  • Meet with your state legislator(s) and let them know that animal issues are a high priority for you as their constituent. If you’re unfamiliar with who your legislators are, you can find them here by address or location on the map. Paul would happily join you at the meeting or help answer any questions.

  • Follow Animal Wellness Action Wisconsin’s Facebook page to stay updated on important meetings, public events, and other animal news in Wisconsin.

  • Bring these issues to the attention of your neighbors by posting educational information on social media, raising the issue of animal protection at your next county or city board meetings, or talking to your friends about trapping at the numerous farmer’s markets around Wisconsin. Many Wisconsinites are not aware of what happens to animals in our state, and you have the power to create meaningful change in your community!

  • Submit letters about animal protection issues to your local newspapers. These can be very effective tools to inform the public about animal issues.

  • Consider donating to Animal Wellness Action so that we can continue to do the far-reaching work we do on the state and national levels.