Party of No, Your Table is Ready

Note:  For background on the Robeson Co Animal Shelter in NC, see posts here, here and here.

On Wednesday, NC State Rep. Pat McElraft and two pet advocates met with shelter manager Jeff Bass and Robeson Co officials to discuss recommendations for changes to improve the shelter:

A pattern arose during the two-hour meeting: Advocates presented an issue they wanted addressed, and county officials explained why it wasn’t feasible.

All major requests were denied by the county on the basis of a wait-and-see-what-the-HSUS-says-in-their-review excuse.  But that HSUS review is by no means a done deal:

The Humane Society shelter review presented another issue: The national organization wants the county to pay for part of the cost, but so far its proposed costs have been too high. [Bill] Smith [director of the Health Department] said he won’t sign a contract until it’s affordable.

McElraft was surprised the organization wanted payment at all; she felt that could compromise the legitimacy of the review, raising questions about impartiality. She emphasized that she trusts the national Humane Society’s ability to conduct a solid review, and said she would call the organization and try to reduce or eliminate the county’s cost.

With all the coins in their coffers, I would think HSUS could work something out so that a poor county like Robeson could improve conditions at their shelter.  We’ll see if the state Rep’s arm twisting squeezes any blood from that stone.

Pet advocates’ main issue was the killing of shelter pets by “heartstick” – overdose of barbituates injected directly into the heart of a sedated pet.  Robeson currently has a system where the killing technicians go down the row of kennels and sedate each pet and then “the technician goes down the row and sticks each animal’s heart”:

Smith said if the shelter switched to intravenous, it would have to open two hours later because the method — inserting an IV of sodium pentobarbital into an animal’s vein, which takes two employees — is time consuming.

I don’t know how Robeson Co taxpayers feel about it but at my job, if my boss tells me I have to take on duties X and Y which will mean more work for me, I don’t have the option of a witty riposte such as, “Fine then – we’ll just have to open the office 2 hours later so I can get this extra work done!”  I  am simply required to figure out how to manage the workload I’ve been given because that’s what I’m being paid for.  What are Robeson Co residents paying these yahoos for exactly?

The pet advocates also asked the shelter to switch from Clorox and Ajax to standard veterinary cleansers.  A year’s supply of free veterinary grade cleansers was offered if the shelter would make the switch.  No dice there either.

All in all, a basically fruitless meeting.  The only concession made by the county was an agreement to put softer beds in with puppies – beds they got for free but were apparently not using.  I guess this about sums it up:

At the end of the meeting, [Susan] Barrett asked Bass if he had a dog that she was supposed to adopt on behalf of a friend. She said Bass showed her the paperwork that said the dog was sick and had been euthanized that morning.

Right.  Because we wouldn’t want to get treatment for a sick dog or let his adopter get treatment for him.  That might besmirch the fine reputation of a classy establishment like Robeson.

10 thoughts on “Party of No, Your Table is Ready

  1. In regards to representative McElrath’s statements, we once again see how pervasive the deceptive identity of HSUS has become. HSUS is NOT an umbrella organization for humane societies nationwide, it is NOT a government agency, it has no federally provided powers or authority, only self appointed as a private non profit organization. McElrath may as well have said she’s waiting for the national Society For the Creation Of A Welcome World For Extraterrestrials to conduct a review. (if the SCWWE does exist, my apologies, I meant no disrespect to your beliefs).

    Has representative McElrath ever seen a review by HSUS or been present when one has been conducted? Has she seen independent peer reviews by any other group or better yet, official agency? Why would she believe a review by HSUS is credible when the group typically advocates for destroying adoptable animals and supports (in fact, participates) in seizures of animals where no abuse or neglect has ever taken place? How does an organization facing a RICO lawsuit and proudly conducting illegal searches and seizures and other egregious abuses of the Constitution have ANY credibility?

  2. After the excellent question posed by Danniele, my only followup question is—why is HSUS even charging anything at all? They bring in 100 million a year in donations. Part of their *charter* is to assist Humane Societies and Rescue organizations to “improve” their facilities (as if any advice they would offer would be an improvement). They should be offering this for free! Where is the IRS, why aren’t they investing HSUS?

  3. If the county wants an agency that has credibility they would be contacting their local Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals(SPCA) chapter for this review. They are an official agency that shows through action what they are about, they step in when animals are mistreated ONLY. They don’t have millions invested in lobbyists that are saying one thing and actually proposing and supporting another set of standards in Washington or whatever governing body that will let them into their halls.

    Over all of that lack of sense in an economic crunch of times, why would ANY government agency turn down free supplies to an arm of their agency that is probably underfunded overall. It almost sounds like Robeson county officials are going through the actions just to quiet the locals.

    Take time to look at the facts, not the hype. And by all means NEVER trust anything you hear from a group that continues to broadcast ads to save the dogs and then gives less than 1% of its total budget to this actual deed.

    1. Why would an SPCA be qualified to perform such a review?

      HSUS shouldn’t be charging anything, but they have the history, credentials and skills to perform such a review. Your local SPCA most likely does not.

  4. it’s very clear that things need to change at the shelter in the blog. what makes much more sense than hiring HSUS to do a ‘review’ would be to appoint a evaluation and recommendations panel comprised of representatives from SUCCESSFUL public shelters and private rescue groups- people who actually have a hands on knowledge of the process and have demonstrated an ability to apply it well.

    remember folks, when HSUS is pushing laws to limit your number of pets, and then they hand out badges to their volunteers to kick in your doors and take them away from you (yes, they do this)- your well fed, healthy happy animals get taken somewhere like THIS. and HSUS thinks this is better than being under your loving care.

    this insanity has to stop.

  5. Dannielle,

    I think your idea of a “peer review” is an excellent one. I am not sure either that HSUS has the pets best interest in mind. Most of my research shows that they want the “one generation and out” model. Meaning that the current domestic animals should not have any offspring, and when the current generation leaves us, no more pets. Of course they don’t really think that is feasible, bit I believe it is what they would prefer.

    It kind of makes me sick, HSUS taking all that money that it makes from the ads showing those sad pets, then not even helping a shelter like this that clearly needs it unless they pay up with money this shelter clearly doesn’t have. I’ll bet if even a small percentage of the local people near this shelter that donated the $19/mo to HSUS would have sent the money to the shelter instead, it would be an entirely different situation at this shelter.

    So how can we get a peer review type system set up? I’ll bet there are folks out there who would volunteer.

  6. I see that the H$U$ has hoodwinked yet another set of people who want to improve the welfare of the animals it wants to protect. Rep. McElrath should look over the website of a group called “Humane Watch”. The reality is, the HU$ doesn’t NOT support, nor does it own nor fund ANY shelters. It huge “rescue” missions you see on TV where they beg for funds are dumped in the lap of small, hard-working shelters, like your own. They do not give shelters anything for free. They’d be just as happy to see you closed down. Why? Because their ultimate goal is the end of ALL animal/human relationships, even your pets.

    Please, all of you look up the reality between what you have been led to believe the H$U$ is about, and what it really IS about. Their main objective is to legislate farms, hunters, fishermen, circuses, zoos, and pets out of existance. Google “animal welfare vs animal rights”. Look at the page entitled “7 Things You Didn’t Know About HSUS”. Work on local solutions, because the H$U$ only spends one HALF of 1% of its multi-million dollar budget on real, live animals. That is ONE dollar out of every TWO HUNDRED. Please do it for the animals in your care, and for your own education.

  7. What the “animal welfare” groups’ initials really mean:

    PETA: People Engaged in the Termination of healthy Animals. How UNethical of them.

    HSUS: Human Scum Using Semantics to try and excuse their killing of healthy animals. How INhumane of them.

    ASPCA: A$$holes Supposedly Protecting and Caring for Animals, but in reality, their idea of “protecting”, “Caring for” and “rescuing someone” is to murder them. How C R U E L.

    These groups are frauds. They are businessmen and women preying upon good hearted humans, and using the donations from those good hearted humans to prey upon and murder the cats and dogs who they *say* they want to save.


    Those are the true “values” of the above mentioned murderers.

    But, of course, all of this is just my opinion.

  8. Roberta Baxter Eugene,Oregon Dogs states: If any of these actions were on humans, the murders would be in a different position than stated here. To me that makes the actions carried out even worse since they are dealing with defenseless, mutes.We must continue to be the canines advocates and seek out criminals of animal cruelty.

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