UPDATED: MAS: Marketing Fail

Snipped from the minutes of the MAS Advisory Board Meeting March 9, 2011:

Board Members present:
Steven Tower
John Cox
Allen Iskiwitz
Jackie Johns
Cindy Sanders, acting Chair/secretary
Matt Pepper, MAS Administrator


Floor opened to public
Beverly King – public should not be kept from entering stray area to adopt. Until Pepper, all animals except most
vicious/sick were available to be adopted. City is keeping public out to hide mistakes.

MAS response – public is shown adoptable animals that come from stray area.

Board response – Miami/Dade allows public in to see strays and adoptable animals. Allowed more time to spend with
potential adopters.

Anne Marie Easton – M/D has up to date book with photos and allows public to select animal with disclaimer regarding

MAS response – strays are mostly pit bulls.

Michelle Buckalew – 13- 15% of animals at shelter available to be viewed. Potential for large scale adoption events to be
held weekly.

MAS response – people are welcome to come to the shelter any business day to adopt.

So there you have it folks.  No need to keep clamoring for the public to be allowed to help the hundreds of dogs behind closed doors in the stray area:  they’re mostly Pitbulls.  Ipso facto, they have no right to life.  And even if they did, nobody cares about a bunch of dogs who are mostly Pitbulls anyway.

As far as taking any of the dogs from the stray area out to weekly, large-scale adoption events – puh. [eye roll] [groan] [sigh] [appeal to Flying Spaghetti Monster for strength to deal with these stupidheads]  Why would we want to do that?  If anyone in Memphis wants to adopt a dog, they can damn well come to OUR PLACE, on OUR HOURS, and choose from the dogs WE SAY they can adopt.  And it’s not gonna be mostly Pitbulls either because we require a home inspection for that and frankly, we just don’t have the resources to conduct a bunch of home inspections so better just to kill kill kill.  We really do have the best system worked out here so if you annoying taxpayers would just sit down and shut up, we’ll all get along just fine.

I don’t know if the dog in the above photos is still alive but if he is, I would love the opportunity to try and help him. MAS – will you allow me to try and help this dog? Can you provide any information on the dog’s status?  You can post here, anonymously if you wish, or e-mail me or contact any Memphis no kill advocate who can then pass along the info to me.  Bloody hell, I don’t care if you send a note tied to the leg of a carrier pigeon.  Just let me try to help this dog.  If he is already dead, I will gladly try to help any other dog of your choosing in the stray area.  Just get the info to me.

Added, 6-12-11:  I received a grab of a dog who looks like the brown and white one above being taken to the kill room yesterday.

25 thoughts on “UPDATED: MAS: Marketing Fail

  1. What do you get when you combine arrogance and stupidity? MAS, of course! And a lot of dead animals. Those poor pits, who might not even be pits, but who die anyway. These idiots have no intention of changing anything they do – nothing!
    I’ll help you help the little brown and white dogger . . .

  2. So they kill pbs and anything else they don’t deem good enough while Memphis lusts for dogs hence the big importation w/more on the way.

    Shut up and deal w/it. It’s not BSL but by golly it’s just as effective huh?

    It’s genius! Evil … but genius none the less.

    Wonder who thought up the blue prints for this?

    1. The policy of locking the strays down and cherry picking a few dogs for the adoption hallway was implemented by Matt Pepper after he took over MAS in 2010.

    2. Actually, it was originally a stupid, arrogant housepainter named Adolf…er, hmmmm, what WAS that last name?

  3. Actually the locks on the stray doors went on WELL before Matther Pepper. There was a theft of 50 something Pit Bulls from the shelter, and the locks were put on the doors then. Mr. Pepper had nothing to do with the doors being locked. Not sure where that information is coming from, but it is not true.

    1. AnneMarie is referring to the supposed “theft” of 46 Pitbulls (21 adults and 25 puppies) from the shelter in November 2007. No signs of forced entry, happened on a weekend.


      The public was still allowed to adopt from the stray area after that “theft” occurred. Matt Pepper changed that after he took over in 2010:

      “Before Pepper came on board in March, the public was allowed to adopt stray dogs[…]”


    2. Yes the locks went on after the “theft” of the pits…
      BUT you could walk through the stray area and place intent to adopt on a dog you wanted.

      The public was banned by Matt Pepper.

  4. Clearly, Matthew Pepper does not consider saving animals’ lives a priority.

    I’m not sure what is his priority (besides collecting his $92K a year), but he’s running a shelter like his own personal dog store – with all the “culls” kept in the back, out of sight, and killed for his convenience. The very lucky few get to be seen by the public. All the rest are just numbers. No Petfinder for them. No PetHarbor. No public viewing.

    MAS could be turned around TODAY if someone with the will to do it were in charge. Unfortunately, no such person is in charge.

    1. The thing is, any “dog store” that produced such a tiny amount of dogs for sale and killed off the vast majority would go out of business right quick. The taxpayers in Memphis need to stand up and demand a better business model at MAS – one that saves lives.

  5. 50 plus pitbulls stolen? And then what? Were they never found?
    So now they all must die? Hardley seems fair. Today’s pitbulls didn’t steal them.
    Seems very undercover, Memphis Beat type of stuff. Only difference is they at least get the bad guys by the end of the show without taking it put on something that isn’t part of it at all.
    Weren’t those two pitbulls turned in by a lady a couple of days ago? They hung out in the lobby with other people coming and going … didn’t seem aggressive or at all guilty of any crime. There was a temperament test going on the whole time they hung out but no one paid any notice. They died for the sins of someone else … a mystery someone. A bad someone. huh.
    That’s what I am talking about … fishy.

  6. I adopted my girl Jinx there in November 2010. They said she was a lab mix like they seem to do on all the dogs, well come to find out she is prob pit and chow mix. Thank god i got her out and they didn’t notice she was mostly pit! Maybe she hid her true self so she could be adopted. Good girl Jinx, good girl!

  7. So the advisory board can only ‘advise”? Is the mayor the only one who can order? I’m sorry for the dumb question, I’m trying to understand how anyone can force change in the system. MP refuses to do his job, save animals and make them available for adoption. Is there a power that can simply sweep in and order him to do his job? Legislature? Do laws need to be passed? Or would the mayor have veto power over any move in that direction? Seems like we need public pressure and inside pressure to make changes but I’m not educated enough on this to see how to accomplish this. Federal law? Or is it a state issue only? I’m throwing these questions out there as kind of brainstorming I guess.

    1. Those are all really good questions – and the answers are important to any change that will be made at all. Right now I feel like I’m spinning my wheels because the emails, letters, etc seem to be making no difference whatsoever. Animals are still being killed on a daily basis and abused/neglected before they are killed.

      I hope that the little brown and white dogger is still with us, but . . . chances are not good. At least there are no people like MP at the Rainbow Bridge and all of these precious souls deserve to be free of his ilk.

      Has anyone met this man in person? What is he like?

  8. IS ANYONE doing the marching around with signs at lunchtime??? Is nobody willing to START???

    1. I agree! Debating what and how to work within the system is NOT going to work in this case because THE SYSTEM is the problem. Drastic situations need drastic actions. Get a permit, go there en masse, and call the media. Come prepared with euth. numbers, facts, photos, signs, etc. Go at lunchtime, a Saturday, whatever works. Two people, twenty people. Keep putting the pressure on until something changes. You have nothing to lose…and everything to gain! There aren’t any rescues working with MAS that you have to worry about being tossed out. There aren’t any redeeming qualities about this shelter you have to worry will be affected by speaking out. You don’t have to sit on the fence with this one. They’ll just keep killing there unless people step up and picket, point out to the taxpaying public how bad things are there, and ask for Mr. Pepper and the board’s removal . Be polite, represent yourselves well, and speak up for those who are suffering in silence. WHY WAIT? Every day that goes by just means another innocent life extinguished.

  9. After watching the last board meeting in May on youtube, they said the euthanasia room is straight ahead as you walk towards the camera, but there is another room that goes to the left. They were saying most people assume the dog is being taken to the eutahasia room when they are really taken into another room (can’t remember what they called this room), but it was the euthanasia room.
    They also said that they are working to get camera up in the euthanasia room for certain people to see, and make sure the proper protocal is being done. I was so upset when they stated that they did NOT sedate the animals prior to killing them, and that was something else they were asking Mr. Pepper to change in this shelter Anyone know if that is ging to happen?

    1. in my personal experience, most animals can be euthanized successfully (ie: painlessly, peacefully, humanely) without being sedated prior to the procedure- as long as they are relaxed and not stressed beforehand (ie: fractious or aggressive animals should be sedated first).
      So i’m not sure i take issue with the lack of sedation (personally)

      1. @Anne – do you see the way these dogs are dragged, often using choke poles, to the kill room? Surely they are neither relaxed nor unstressed. They are killed, not peacefully, humanely euthanized. In fact, they are tied up and forced to watch the ones before them being killed.
        There is nothing right with this picture. NOTHING!!!

      2. umm…i’m not sure where you thought i was saying MAS was using correct practices.
        The argument in this case shouldn’t be ‘sedate all animals before euthanizing’ (a practice that is not needed in caring, humane shelters)
        instead it’s ‘treat the animals humanely so you don’t have to sedate for euthanasia’

        honestly- we can’t even get them to not use choke poles on every animal. Are you seriously thinking pushing for sedation prior to euthanasia (an mostly uneccesary practice) is something we should be focusing on? Let’s start at the basics and get them to change practices that won’t cost additional resources or require medical knowlege and licenses to dispense

  10. Maybe it’s the waiting room for the kill room – sorry, but what they are doing is killing and NOT euthanasia.

  11. Sorry, Anne, thought you were referencing MAS, not making general statements about euthanasia.

  12. This site is so critical for getting the word out about MAS…kudos to you for doing this!! I, for one, would never have known about this. But my question is, how long does the debate go on before something is done? How many dogs do we watch go down the aisle to their death?! At some point in time…hopefully sooner than later…we all have to stop talking and start doing something. It is important to share the issue, debate the solution, make sure all the facts are gathered, but once that is done, if nothing happens, all that means nothing….especially to the dead, the dying, and those who will come down that aisle. It is time to move forward with solutions.

  13. Some thoughts…
    1) The message has to go out to a wider, but local audience. While your blog continues to be posted on Facebook pages (which is helping expose the issue to animal lovers around world), there needs to be a push for publicity in the local area telling the general public what is happening there. The way to get media attention, and thus the public’s attention, is by protesting, picketing, an undercover investigation, interviews, a media expose, etc. Consistent pressure is key. Shaming them is key. Making them backpeddle is key. The light of the cameras in Mr. Pepper’s face so that he knows he is the target is key. If you have to do it to someone else like the Mayor, the Board, etc….do it. They need to have no doubt that their constituents are watching them and not happy with what they are doing.

    2) From what you have showed us, the system…from the employees at MAS to the director, to the Board, to the city officials, to the Mayor…are all a part of the problem. DO NOT SEEK YOUR SOLUTIONS THERE. You are wasting your time. It is the unknowing public and the media that are your friends. The media…to put the spotlight on, and the public…for the outcry for change once they know what is going on. The change must be despite the system, but your knowledge of the system can make the difference!

Leave a Reply