Treats on the Internets

A shades of gray story about a man in New Brunswick who had his 4 dogs seized by the SPCA.  What do you think? (via reader Kim)

A woman in Calgary bought a designer breed puppy online for hundreds of dollars and picked him up in a grocery store parking lot.  He was wearing a cute sweater.  When she got home and removed the puppy’s sweater, she found he was covered in sores and emaciated.  (also via Kim)

Humane Watch reviewed the 2009 tax forms filed by HSUS and found they have improved in the share of the pie they give out to animal shelters.  It’s still less than 1% of their budget, just like in 2008, but they’ve crossed over the one half of one percent mark.

In Lincoln Co NC, a dog who has bitten two people has been deemed dangerous by the county.  The owners have 10 days to find a home for him in another county or have him killed. (via reader Samantha)

A hairless kitten froze to death in the cargo hold of a Delta plane (via reader Fix Charlotte)

Boomer, the severely neglected Labrador saved by the Petaluma Animal Shelter, is recovering.  The search for who might have caused Boomer to suffer continues.

The Frogdog Blog asks:  “How many litters are TOO many litters?”

15 thoughts on “Treats on the Internets

  1. Let’s not forget the mistrial of the miscreant who set fire to his PB, Apollo. More loverly news about how we are moving toward a NKN…really, I am all for it, and want it to succeed more than anyone, but until we change people’s minds, its spitting into the wind. It is similar to the civil rights movement – after the successes of the Voting Rights movement et al., it became unacceptable to openly voice your prejudices…then, Ronald Reagan changed everything and it became quite allright to allow our xenophobia to rise to the surface. We need to educate these OTHER people and stop preaching to the choir. I hope there will be workshops about this at the NKN Conference in DC.

  2. Isn’t it weird how HW and I can review the same documents and do the same math and come up with two completely different figures?

    Where oh where are the 2009 HW tax documents for me and you to peruse? I wonder who pays for their ads in the New York Times, since they “aren’t seeking donations”. It takes a lot of money to do that, and if they don’t want money from the public, they must have some pretty wealthy sponsors. The closest I can come is a 2008 990 document for CCF, which pays Rick Berman $1,043,604 for “services rendered”, plus his official $18,000 “salary”. That’s some tricky accounting. Plus $1,389,023 in related party payments — the related parties being Richard Berman & Co, Inc. and Richard Berman. Interesting.

    1. What’s weird to me is, if the HumaneWatch figures of how much HSUS gives to hands-on animal shelters were wrong, why haven’t the team of HSUS lawyers done something about it? They just sit back and allow HW to take out ads and billboards and post all over the internet these supposedly inaccurate figures? That doesn’t seem like HSUS at all.

    2. I am curious to see the differences in your accounting of the HSUS and the accounting done by those at HW. I too have gone through the SAME 990’s and didn’t see HW’s math as inaccurate. BUT if I missed something that was there and you can point it out – please do. If you are on Facebook you can PM me (Erica Eblin – Columbus, OH) or you can leave the info here.

      Bascially what it boils down to is that HW is pretty big sticklers about accuracy because they fear libel suits if they get it wrong. AND if it was wrong then HSUS (with their groups of 30+ attorneys would be all over HW and filing papers that would result in a court battle. Instead, HSUS and their lap dogs instead do the dirt digging on the people who set up HW. HSUS and their support groups (like SHW) instead personally attack people instead of fighting the facts – and that is because you can’t fight the facts.

      Speaking of that – if you went through the same tax documents that I did then you also noticed how HSUS “moves” money around to other groups (while claiming to NOT be a drive through grant goup) – and if you further research it you would see that many of the groups (if not all) have at least 1 member of HSUS sitting on the BOD of these groups. And I find THAT interesting!

  3. Hm…she paid hundreds of dollars for a dog she picked up in a grocery parking lot…wearing a sweater. What could possibly go wrong with this deal? No wonder charlatan operations like the HSUS can get huge donations with this kind of mentality prevalent in the public.

    1. Read the rest of the story – the scary part, I thought, was the fact that these dogs had been “placed” with this woman by their original owner.

      A perfect story for illustrating exactly why people should not be giving their dogs away “free to good home” or without some serious background checking.

      1. I disagree with not giving animals “free to good homes” because there have been MANY situations where I have placed a dog – at no cost – because I knew the people would be great owners for the breed I was placing. They had the knowledge of the breed and I did do a record check – back ground, personal references, and vet checks – because even though I was “giving” them away I wanted to make sure that it would still be a good home. So instead of saying that this is a good example of not giving animals to homes for free – you need to focus more on doing thorough checking of the people we are placing animals with.

        Regardless of if someone pays for an animal or gets one for free – there is nothing to indicate that the care is going to be substandard. Every animal that I have as a pet was free to me and they all live the pampered life. I refuse to pay for an animal when there are so many out there that need homes and I can save a life without having to come out of my pockets, and it leaves me the extra money to spend on providing the supplies that the animal needs.

        In my honest opinion it is better to focus on background checks instead of the free vs paying for argument.

  4. The “shades of gray” story…sounds like these dogs were resident dogs, not house dogs and seniors at that. They were living under what sounds like an unheated house in the dead of winter. A neighbor was feeding them.

    This is not a standard of care that I would find acceptable. My senior dog has multiple low beds in the house she can use and I tend to her arthritis and such meticulously because she should not be hurting or uncomfortable if I can avoid it. So the idea of a senior dog crawling under a house for shelter in the dead of winter offends me.

    But is it neglect?

    I have a stray/possibly feral cat living under my deck. He’s got a shelter (with lots of foam insulation and clean straw to fend off the cold), a heated water dish so he has liquid water all winter, and he gets fed every day.

    That’s pretty much how the dogs were being kept (although no one mentions water for them?). So I think the neglect happened much earlier in their lives when the man failed to socialize them and bring them into his home.

    1. Even if the dogs had been well socialized, the idea that he could easily find someone to take in both him and his many large dogs for the winter is unlikely.

      Here was a man with few options, who did the best that he could.

      A lot of people have come forward and said that the SPCA had no right to the seizure.

      Of course, details of the dogs’ conditions are not being published…

      Regardless, I felt the seizure was warranted and that leaving short coated dogs (who are a naturally skinny breed as well) outside for the winter IN NEW BRUNSWICK provided a clear example of neglect regardless of whether he was living there or not.

      It would not have been difficult to set up some kind of housing unit on the property with a heat lamp or two and a dog door to provide a WARM place for these dogs to sleep – at the very least.

      At least, that’s how I read it.

      Mikken, the cat under your porch is a) built for winter weather, to a degree, and b) NOT living in New Brunswick.

  5. Having lived for many years in New Brunswick, I can’t help but think those dogs would be dead dogs within a month or so. Weather there can be BRUTAL – and I remember 2-3 day storms. These are old dogs- I can’t imagine they have the health or strength to survive too long under those circumstances. Further, did you notice the comment “he is a couple of hundred yards form the highway and they can run loose” – that’s really safe- especially when there is heavy snow (a hazard to the dogs AND drivers). I wonder what sort of help he asked for? looked for? New Brunswick has some excellent rescues – there is a possibility he might have been able to get help there but don’t know if he tried.

      1. There were people in the comments section who questioned their age as well – I would think that he’s working off of memory and that the dogs are not quite that old.

        I would like to know what kind of physical condition they were in…and if he made any sort of provisions for their shelter (do they get fresh straw before the winter or are they sleeping on the hard ground?) and if the neighbor could even lay hands on them in case they needed help (I can’t with my feral cat – I’ve seen him ONCE this winter).

        The whole “short coated breed” thing is a very real concern, you’re right, KDH.

        Would we feel differently if he were still living in his house for the winter?

    1. Thank you for this first hand account of life in NB.

      I don’t have a lot of experience with the eastern provinces, but I can tell you from living that far north (but to the west) that the weather there is NOT like the weather that the US readers here are used to. And really, trying to explain what that weather can be like to someone who doesn’t regularly experience it can be almost impossible – heck, sometimes *I* forget just how severe it can be until I find myself in northern Saskatchewan in February and we have to worry about the fuel lines freezing WHILE we are driving – even in our big V8 diesel.

      Also, thanks for the info re: the rescue situation in NB. I really had no idea and couldn’t comment on that aspect of the situation (for example, in northern Saskatchewan and Alberta – and even Ontario – rescues are few and far between, poorly funded and simply difficult to operate thanks to the unique weather requirements).

      As for the age of the dogs, I think it’s telling that he gave such an outrageous number – to me, it’s an indicator of just how out of touch he is with his dogs on a daily basis.

  6. Talk about a wealthy of information. This blog had me ALL over the place on the Internet reading every link I could to each story.

    My biggest issue is with the dog, Silo, that has bit 2 different people and has been banned from the town that it’s owners currently live in. Unless someone is willing to step up and do some behavioral training with this dog – to see if it can be redeemed then I think just “relocating” the dog is completely irresponsible. We hear enough stories that contain pit bull type dogs and their attacks on people, that we really need to be responsible as pit owners – for the good of the breed. Sadly – if this was my dog and I had already done behavioral training (there is no mention of this in the article) then it would be time to put the dog to sleep – otherwise he’s the proverbial time bomb waiting to go off again!

  7. Holy moly, for once I’m siding with the SPCA on this one (the NB case). Canadian winters can be brutal, and NB is no exception. Especially given all the storms the eastern provinces have received. Being outside 24/7 is no place for a dog.

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