ASPCA Says 41 Dogs Alive but Not How Many Were Killed

When pet advocates began asking questions about 41 dogs transported north from a SC shelter by the ASPCA in November, some peeps took to kerfufflin’.  That’s presumably why the ASPCA put out a release on its website making sure that everyone knew these 41 dogs were all alive and (mostly all) adopted.  That’s great for those 41 dogs.  But the primary concern pet advocates had was that the shelters these dogs were sent to kill pets.  As such, whether or not any of these 41 pets were killed does not address the concern here.

To truly put this alleged rescue into perspective, we would need to know more information than the ASPCA is giving us.  They want us to remember one number:  41.  That’s how many dogs they say were rescued in this transport.  But the 41 figure has no context because we don’t know the number of pets who were killed at any of these shelters in preparation for their arrival nor do we know how many pets were killed during their stay (November and December).

The 3 shelters who accepted these dogs are:

  • Capital Area Humane Society, Hilliard, OH  – Site does not appear to be current; mentions an intention to become a limited admission shelter in 2009; has some old, scattered figures for adoptions but not for total intake or number killed

Can anyone request complete intake & outcome stats for the months of November and December 2011 from any of these three facilities?  Unless we find out about whatever killings took place during this time period, there is simply no way to put the ASPCA’s claim of 41 dogs rescued into context.

13 thoughts on “ASPCA Says 41 Dogs Alive but Not How Many Were Killed

  1. I’m glad you are following up with that story. The 3 shelter in question are high kill shelter and it is most likely that other animals had to die in order to make room for the “PR stunt arrivals”.

  2. Thank you for making this post. These big orgs know how to spin a good tale and keep looking good in the press and keep the money flowing in. But people are getting smart to it because of articles like this one. Ask for the whole truth and then dig for it.

  3. I just read this . . . Edwin Sayres is being given credit for No Kill in — you guessed it — New York City!

    This is an Associated Press story out of their Los Angeles bureau and has already been widely distributed. Even the Guardian has picked it up.

    If you wish to comment on the misuse of the word “euthanasia” in both the headline and the story, as well as the failure to accurately represent the No Kill movement, there are three ways:

    (1) You can comment to your local news outlet if they picked up the story. Be sure to mention that this was an AP story, datelined January 5th, and reference whatever headline your local outlet used. (They probably used the one in the link above, which was undoubtedly furnished by the AP . . . headlines come with wire service story packages and are almost always used, as is, by extremely time-pressured local news editors.)

    (2) You can comment to the chief of the Los Angeles bureau via email. Be sure to explain that the story was datelined January 5th and was written by Sue Manning, and use their headline so he can find it in their system. (Or you could copy and paste the story into your email for his convenience.)

    If you write to the Los Angeles bureau chief, I recommend cc’ing the bureau’s assistant bureau chief along with their news editor:

    Los Angeles Bureau Chief: Anthony Marquez,
    Los Angeles Assistant Bureau Chief: Frank Baker,
    Los Angeles News Editor : Brian Melley,

    (3) You can do what I did. I wrote to the AP bureau chief in New York City, pointed out the inaccuracies in the L.A. bureau’s story, especially regarding the ASPCA, and asked him to assign coverage of the January 21st conference in New York City, which will focus on New York City’s shelter animals and will feature Nathan Winograd.

    I couldn’t find an email address, so I sent a letter via fax, with the L.A. bureau’s story pasted in for the NYC bureau chief’s easy reference:

    Howard Goldberg
    Bureau Chief
    The Associated Press
    450 W. 33rd Street
    New York, New York 10001
    FAX: 212-621-1679

    If you live in or near New York, you can also call the AP’s NYC bureau: main line 212-621-1670, bureau chief 212-621-7932.

    This can never be said too often . . . please be respectful and concise.

    Info about the NYC conference featuring Winograd:

    1. Thank you Karen for sharing this detailed info. The NYC shelter system, for anyone who doesn’t know, is not no kill, nor is it anything close. The shelters work hard to muzzle volunteers but some have spoken out to reveal the horrible treatment and needless killings taking place. This is the ASPCA’s backyard. They have millions of dollars, donated by people who are touched by Sarah McLaughlin’s voice as a backdrop for images of dogs and cats suffering. What the donors don’t realize is that dogs and cats in NYC ARE SUFFERING because ASPCA, the Mayor’s Alliance et al refuse to embrace lifesaving, including rescue access laws.

  4. I did some searching at AHS. Looks like 19 of those dogs ended up there.
    18 have been adopted. The last one is scheduled for hip displaysia surgery

    @Peter Masloch- AHS does not suffer a shortage of space and would never euthanize to ‘make room’

    1. Anonymous – We got that info from the ASPCA release. What we were looking for is the number of pets taken in/killed for November and December. Also, AHS may not call it killing to “make room” but they do kill healthy/treatable pets so however you want to label it, the pets are needlessly dead just the same.

    2. If the AHS does not kill for population control, why was there a 33% kill rate in 2010? We do need more details on this. Your statement “AHS does not suffer a shortage of space and would never euthanize to ‘make room’” is not sufficient and I doubt it that the AHS had (surprise, surprise) 19 open kennels in their facility. A detailed statistic for November and December 2011 would clarify if the rescue of 41 dogs was an ASPCA PR stunt or not.

      1. What are you basing the doubt on that AHS wouldn’t have 19 open kennels to accept these dogs? In fact, that’s one of the #1 reasons AHS is criticized- having empty kennels.
        The Golden Valley location is set up to take in transports, rescues, and cruelty/seizure cases. So there is always kennel space to accept these animals because there are kennels designated for those purposes. They didn’t go in back and say ‘hmm, we got 19 new dogs coming in- we need Buddy’s kennel for that so euthanize him’. That’s what i was trying to get across- sorry if i was unclear.
        As for whether it was a PR stunt, well maybe for the ASPCA, but according to AHS 2010-2011 annual report they took in over 5000 animals from other agencies in the last 1.5 years (and almost 800 from cruelty cases) so for them i’m sure it was just business as usual (and i don’t see any press releases from AHS on this particular case). not that any of that really matters

        yb- i obvs misunderstood your original question- sorry about that. And now that i get what you’re asking (durr) i unfortunately don’t have the info you’re looking for.

  5. I just received the worst care for my pet who has pneumonia, kennel cough and mange from the Golden Valley Humane Society. They are heartless and all they want to do is make money but they do not care if the animal suffers after it walks out the door.

  6. I volunteer at Bay Area Humane Society, which is one of the 3 organizations mentioned. I do recall the dogs coming in from SC and believe all were adopted. A couple were in foster care and I am not sure if they are still there or if they came up for adoption, but all the others were adopted. As far as euthanasia rates, I would not have these numbers but I do know that the shelter was actually pretty empty in Nov and Dec. It seemed like a lot of people were adopting before the holidays. While volunteering, I noticed there were not many animals (dogs or cats) to spend time with because so many were adopted (a good thing!). I would have a hard time believing that any dogs were euthanized due to lack of space.

    I also wanted to mention that BAHS recently started a partnership with our local Petsmart and some of the dogs and cats are available for adoption there. It allows a little more space for cats and dogs and hopefully helps. I realize that I don’t have any facts or figures, so all I can provide is my personal observation of BAHS.

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