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CA Rescue Group Adopts Dog Then Steals Him from Adopter

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Blinky, as shown on the NBCbayarea.com website.

A rescue scenario many of us can relate to:

A woman fell in love with a dog she met at a CA adoption event in early September.  She filled out an application, answering all questions truthfully, including that she had a full time job and no other pets.  She was approved, paid the $300 fee and took the dog home.  She renamed him, considering him part of her family now.  She bought him chew toys and doggie clothes in addition to knitting him a sweater herself.  She promised to protect him for the rest of his life.

Sound familiar?  I have been in those shoes.  But then:

After 3 weeks with her new family member, representatives from the rescue group came by the woman’s home.  They informed the adopter that her truthful answers on her adoption application were disqualifying.  The dog required someone to stay at home with him every day and he required other pets to play with.  His new name was unacceptable, as was the fact that the woman allowed him to snooze on the couch.  The woman was stunned.  One of the reps asked if she could hold the dog and the owner agreed.  The rescue reps then ran from the home, carrying the woman’s pet with them.

The woman is heartbroken and told a local reporter she loves her dog Blinky with all her “heart and soul”.  She feels she failed him.

HALO, the rescue group that stole Blinky from his owner, said this when contacted by the media:

“We are taking this matter very seriously but just need to follow the proper channels before we can make a public statement. Please allow us our time to do our due diligence. The adopters check was never cashed and returned to her immediately.”

I have searched for news updates on this story but haven’t found any. I have also found what appear to be a website and a Facebook page for the rescue group but neither had any information on Blinky. If anyone knows what happened to Blinky, please post a comment.

Stories such as this, while they are the exception and not the rule, happen far too frequently.  They discourage adoption and turn the public off rescuing.  When pet lovers are driven away from adoption, they get their pets from other sources – usually those which rescues like to shame people for using.  If you don’t like the effect, stop contributing to the cause.

Human beings are fallible.  I hope in this case, the HALO reps realize they were the ones who were at fault, not the owner, and do the right thing to get Blinky home.

(Thanks Clarice.)

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Original Link: POST From the Blog of Yes Biscuit! Posted by: YesBiscuit

KY Study Exposes Troubling Failures at Municipal Shelters

Warning:  Toward the end of this post, there are some graphic photos which may be disturbing to some readers.

In 2004, the state of Kentucky went from an Anything Goes type of attitude toward animal control facilities to a Well, Not Literally Anything Goes view with the enactment of the KY Humane Shelter Act.  Counties were given 3 years to comply with the new law.  It covers the bare bones of humane treatment for shelter animals, which is to say, probably most of the animals won’t end up as bare bones if the facilities provide at least these minimums.  Provisions in the law include:

  • Cages big enough for the animal to stand up, turn around and lie down in
  • Clean cages with adequate protection from the elements
  • Clean food, daily
  • Clean water, always
  • Provide sick and injured animals with veterinary care or kill them
  • Maintain basic animal records such as dates, coat color, whether the animal was reclaimed, adopted or killed
  • Provide quarantine areas for rabies hold cases
  • Be open to the public at least 24 hours per week with hours posted so visitors can see them

As noted in the recent report issued by the Lincoln Memorial University College of Veterinary Medicine, there are a number of shortfalls with the law.  Namely, there are no inspections to determine if any of the 90 county shelters in the state are in compliance and it falls upon private citizens to file a lawsuit against any facility believed to be operating outside the law.  In fact, no one has apparently ever checked to verify that the state’s shelters are meeting the law’s very basic requirements for animal care.  So the vet school conducted a study to determine the level of compliance throughout the state.  Below is my summary of some of the findings:

  • Only 17% of Kentucky’s shelters were determined to be in complete compliance with the Humane Shelter Act.  Approximately half were failing to meet 3 or more of the law’s provisions.
  • 7% of shelters were either possibly or definitely not feeding the animals daily.
  • 11% of shelters were either possibly or definitely not providing clean water to all animals.
  • 6% of shelters kept no records on the animals.
  • 5% of shelters housed animals in cages too small for them to stand up or turn around.
  • 73% of shelters were over capacity with multiple animals per cage.
  • 12% of shelters were either closed to the public or open less than 24 hours per week.
  • 22% of shelters did not have hours posted.
  • 10% of shelters housed animals in a closed room with no air circulation.
  • 24% of shelters were either possibly or definitely not providing heat for indoor housing areas in winter.
  • 37% of shelters kept animals in dirty cages.
  • 42% of shelters had no quarantine area.
  • 23% of shelters did not take cats.

The study does not include a statistic on how many of the shelters provided vet care but does reference the lack of vet care as a problem:

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A KY shelter puppy in obvious need of veterinary care (Photo from the Lincoln Memorial University College of Veterinary Medicine study)

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A KY shelter dog in obvious need of veterinary care (Photo from the Lincoln Memorial University College of Veterinary Medicine study)

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KY shelter kittens in obvious need of veterinary care (Photo from the Lincoln Memorial University College of Veterinary Medicine study)

Bearing in mind how low the bar is for KY shelters – feed and water the animals, put them in proper sized cages, clean the cages, write down “brown male dog” on a card, etc. – it is completely unacceptable that any of the state’s shelters are not meeting these most basic requirements. What’s worse, with no mandated monitoring or enforcement, the burden of attempting to hold non-compliant shelters accountable falls to the taxpayers who are already footing the bill for these failing facilities. I hope the study will be useful for animal advocates trying to drag the state forward on these issues. In the meantime, animals are suffering in KY shelters and will continue to suffer while staff gets paid to not do their jobs.

(Thanks Clarice.)

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Original Link: POST From the Blog of Yes Biscuit! Posted by: YesBiscuit