Maricopa Co: Cruel and Unusual Treatment of a Stray Dog and 10 Puppies

Maricopa Co
Screengrab from depicting dog ID #3296167 and her 10 unborn pups at the Maricopa Co pound (click to enlarge).

Maricopa Co ACC in AZ impounded this obviously pregnant dog as a stray on April 22, 2013. Records obtained via FOIA request indicate that four days later the pound’s vet cut out her uterus which contained 10 full term puppies, old enough to survive outside the womb.  These pups had a right to live.  Medical records contain no mention of how the uterus containing the puppies was disposed of nor is there any notation of Fatal Plus being administered to the pups. They were presumably thrown into the trash can to suffocate and die.

Although this poor dog was cruelly subjected to a behavioral evaluation just 3 days after the killing of her pups, she passed. The day after, Maricopa Co noted she was “not kenneling well” and put her on the kill list. This dog had a right to live.  Mercifully the so-called irresponsible public came through to save this dog from additional harm at the pound and she was taken in by a rescue group.

Remind me again how the mistreatment and killing of pets in animal shelters is the public’s fault?

46 thoughts on “Maricopa Co: Cruel and Unusual Treatment of a Stray Dog and 10 Puppies

  1. not kenneling well?
    She was likely grieving the loss of her pups ~ I hope those who killed those puppies never have to experience the loss of a child. Damn them all! Those puppies had a right to a life. They never had a chance. STOP.THE.KILLING

    1. I think you have hit the nail right on the head. I have often observed that a lot of people who defend euthanizing unborn pups because “there are already too many”, are ironically some of the same people who are out there having human babies, when there are also way too many people in the world. How would they feel if someone told them the right thing to do was to abort their pregnancy?

      1. This poor animal and her puppies were treated in an appalling manner. I know there are millions of good Americans who would be equally angry and upset at this callous treatment of sentient beings. However, the reputation of the USA as a cruel and violent nation grows every time a story like this is revealed.

    2. More mama was likely also in pain from the surgery. I could have understood if she was barely along on the pregnancy, but to cut out full-term puppies that would likely have been able to survive and flourish, is nothing less than barbaric. I realize there are too many dogs going into shelters, and spay/neuter is the only way to decrease these numbers, but once a dog IS pregnant, and especially this far along, there is no excuse for what these monsters did. The only compassionate and humane thing they could have done would be to care for her until the puppies were born, spay mama as soon as the pups were weaned and she was ready for the surgery, and adopt the puppies out (spayneuter first, if they are old enough when they get adopted, or arrange to have them spayed/neutered after adoption as soon as they are old enough).

  2. Nothing new for MCACC, which just made the news by recently receiving a grant that they will use for s/n and “educating the public” in targeted zip codes ( meaning pooer) around Phoenix.

    1. Hopefully it will be one of those “Do as we say, not as we do” type of educational campaigns. I’d hate to think of anyone learning animal care practices from the way the pound does business.

  3. Just sent an email – might not make a difference from me, but if we can start letting these folks know we are aware and won’t stand for the killing, maybe if enough of us write . . .

    1. This is the response I got to my email:
      Notice no mention of the 10 puppies they killed

      The dog you are referring to came in on 4-22-13. Was held the legal period of time. Was spayed on 4-26-13. Was released to an animal rescue agency on 5-2-13.


      Karen Dickey, Executive Assistant to an Executive Officer

      Maricopa County Animal Care and Control

      2500 South 27th Avenue

      Phoenix AZ 85009

      (602) 506-2772 office

      (602) 506-2739 fax

      1. Karen, It is a sick person that can so heartlessly kill puppy’s that are full term! Spay and Neuter is vital but not to the point that you have to dig into the uterus and kill live full term baby’s
        !! This was a cold blooded thing to do!! Many people are sick about what you have allowed to happen!! Your on report to the USA’s Vet associations!

  4. This is Sheriff Joe’s bailiwick. Where he has prisoners taking over the animal control shelter duties – and making a profit, instead of costing so much. Or something like that. They are subject to do all sorts of things most of us would not consider.

    1. This has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with Sheriff Joe. I don’tr know where that connection ever started. Probably by MCACC, haha. Maricopa county animal care and control is under the direction of Rodrigo Silva, who reports to the Maricopa county board of supervisors, who think he is doing a bang up job. Contact them. Thanks.

      1. I agree! It is a facility run by Rodrigo Silva. Sheriff Joe is a good man who loves animals and treats them well. Silva is a demon who listens to no one.

  5. Cruelty never stops. This not only completely pisses me off it makes me sick. I am going to go give my dogs some hugs.

  6. If I only had a dollar for every plea, every email, every facebook post, begging the irresponsible public to save-a-dog-about-to-die-in-a-“shelter”, I’d be rich. How many times have we read, “ONLY 12 HOURS TO LIVE!!!”? That is an arbitrary expiration date imposed by a shelter. How do we allow shelters to get away with this? Are we so concerned about saving “THIS ONE” or “THAT ONE”, we don’t realize we are giving tacit approval to these shelter policies? I don’t think people even realize what they’re asking for anymore. People, if WE need to SAVE animals from the “shelter”, then why should we even keep these places open????? Sorry. Preaching to the choir, just had to get that out.

    1. It’s an important point to reiterate. By keeping us continually focused on jumping through hoops to save THIS ONE and then immediately setting the hoops on fire to save THAT ONE, kill shelters maintain the status quo. Compassionate people are too frenzied and distracted by the small picture to do anything about the big picture. It’s been working for them so far anyway.

      1. Thank you, Shirley, and marylanddogfederation, for the reminder. My focus is the big picture, but I sometimes tend to get caught up in the small picture (or many small pictures) because I start feeling guilty that I don’t forward/repost every “beyond urgent” plea I get for a dog or cat (and I get a LOT).

        I remember when a group posted a message about how doing rescue without working on the big picture is like trying to dry up a flood with a paper towel, and the rescue community reacted with such vitriol for being insulted and disrespected. But the group was right.

        Yes, it’s understandably difficult for people to shift any of their focus away from those in need right now, but until they do, there will always be those “only hours to live” pleas.

  7. What the hell would they do that for.How cruel.Poor girl never had a chance to live her babies.Reminds me of the head person at a shelter who is not giving the dog their full euthenization ammount and then puts them in the freezer to finish dying.This just makes me so sad but most of all furious.WTF is she doing in charge of any living creature.I so wish I could change so many things.

  8. One of my foster failures is a dog named Dalila. She was admitted to NY Animal Care and Control (emphasis on the “control”, not the “care”) as a VERY pregnant stray. NYACC proceeded to spay her, aborting her pups (who would have been absolutely gorgeous, as she is almost certainly a pure Staffordshire Terrier). No notes were kept on what happened to the pups, whether they were killed humanely or left to suffocate and die.

    She was a hot mess when she was pulled by Deb Dilorio of Amsterdog and fostered overnight by a wonderful woman who let poor, hormonal, grieving Dalila mingle with one of her own dogs. I drove the following day across the state in a raging snowstorm to pick her up and bring her to my home. She curled up in the back of my Jeep and slept the entire eight hour drive home, oblivious to the crazy weather I was navigating through.

    She arrived emaciated — she was, after all, a pregnant stray, so her resources were being consumed by her pups. To this day she has some resource issues with food and treats, but it’s all very manageable.

    She is an absolutely lovely girl who took months to overcome the loss of her pups. She is a joy to spend time with, and she has a huge heart.

    This poor dog should never have had to experience the abrupt loss of her pups — she went to sleep pregnant and woke up from major abdominal surgery without her babies. Her milk came in, her hormones raged, and she suffered.

    I’m glad Dalila’s life has ultimately had a happy turn, she did not deserve the treatment she received from NYACC. Aborting full term puppies is simply cruel.

  9. I started a page MCAC Please Stop Killing Our Dogs. This type of thing has been going on in this shelter for years. They abuse the dogs and cats, they murder over 24,000 dogs and cats a year, the list to atrocities that occur in those 2 shelters is endless and no one will listen. The Director of the shelter holds 5 positions within in the county and has the Board of Supervisors in his back pocket. Something has to be done but I’ve run out of people to beg. They just don’t care.

  10. This is horrible and should of NEVER been done, if people were more responsible, spayed & neutered, less of this would happen. People breed for profit or are negligent and let dogs have babies. Rescue, educate, spay and neuter. These monsters should be charged with animal cruelty, this is disgusting. Millions of animals are killed annually due to nobody wanting them, yet people keep breeding more. Do all you can to save lives, don’t buy puppies, go to a shelter or rescue.

    1. If more people neutered their pets, evil people who put unborn puppies into the shelter trash can to suffocate would suddenly transform into compassionate caregivers? *dies*

    2. They are not killed due to nobody wanting them; they are killed due to sick assholes wanting to kill them and lazy assholes who can’t be bothered to find them homes or feed them or clean up after them.

  11. am never able to understand how a spay can be done on a mother just about to deliver puppies.. it’s sounds totally unethical and immoral to me.. the shelter director+ vet seems to have no conscience in my opinion.. am just happy that the poor dog lives..

    1. Not only do the Director and Vet have no conscience but how about the volunteers and rescues that are in that shelter on a daily basis and refuse to come forward to say anything. They actually defend the Director and his killing posse. Until someone in that shelter that says they love animals but have no problem watching the daily carnage that goes on gets a backbone and comes forward nothing will change. They’re all a bunch of hypocrites.

  12. This isn’t happening only in shelters. I did a “internship” at a vet clinic where regardless if the pet was pregnant they would still spay and throw away the unborn puppies/kittens. The vet said that there weren’t any laws against animal abortions.

  13. So why aren’t the people living in these cities doing something to end this kind of treatment of animals? I’m assuming this is a city run shelter (I’m in Canada, things are different here). Don’t bow down and let your officials dictate how things are going to be, stand up for yourselves, organize, and MAKE changes happen.

    1. I can’t speak for every place but in Maricopa County they have no backbones. I moved back to NY 3 yrs. ago and the things I saw while volunteering in those shelters have haunted me so badly that I’m still trying to get make a change. The volunteers and rescues refuse to come forward because they believe they won’t be able to volunteer and trying to tell them that it can’t happen falls on deaf ears. Maricopa County is so crooked I’m sure that all the elected officials are making money at the expense of those dogs and cats lives. It’s a nightmare that I’ve been trying to fix since 2007.

  14. It’s NOT the first time and won’t be the last, there are rescues with foster home waiting and willing to take these mothers and they won’t let them, cruel world we live in.

  15. “They were presumably thrown into the trash can to suffocate and die.”
    I agree with most posts on YesBiscuit, but honestly, you have NO evidence that this is true. You are making a completely unfounded assumption. You may not support full-term spay/aborts, but just because MCACC performed a surgery that you believe to be unethical and immoral doesn’t mean that they did not administer Fatal Plus to the puppies after they were removed from the uterus. If they truly did not, then that is cruel and unacceptable-but it would be against standard practice for full-term spay/aborts, which is to euthanize any puppies who do survive outside the uterus.

    I will also add that the other location of MCACC, their East facility, achieved an impressive 84% live release rate from January-February this year. This is despite an ancient facility and minimal staff.

    Yes, MCACC has many problems, but their leadership is far more progressive than you give them credit for, and they have a much higher save rate and much greater transparency than the far more well-funded Arizona Humane Society.

    1. As stated, the records indicate nothing about Fatal Plus being administered. I stand by my presumption due to the fact that it’s SOP in pet killing facilities and the lack of evidence that anything different occurred.

    2. 84% if it’s true which I doubt it is for one month and you’re bragging about that? Their leadership is totally incompetent and doesn’t deserve to own a dog much less be a Shelter Director. How about their 8% return to owner rate or the 24,000+ they murder every year all the while blaming the “irresponsible public.” The dogs in that shelter lie for days with injuries that aren’t tended to, they don’t have food or water half the time, they classify them all as S-5 to give themselves a reason to murder. People like the person above are the reasons that shelter will never change. They sit by, they defend that monster that runs the place, they refuse to see the total death camp that MCAC is and then they call themselves animal lovers. With friends like that those animals don’t need any enemies.

      1. I also have to add that as you can see they blame the ancient facility, the minimal staff, the irresponsible public but the Director and his groupies never, ever take any of the responsibility. The shelter on the West Side is new, I believe it opened in 2007, they have Halo running their adoptions so staff isn’t an issue and they still murder most of the dogs and cats that come through their doors, they still have dogs not getting medical care. They can find vets to do abortions but they can’t find a vet to tend to a gaping wound. Please don’t believe the propaganda, they’re truly evil monsters.

  16. When is this going to end, everyone please get their dogs and cats neutered. These people who are doing this are having their own babies, and mean people breed mean people.

  17. HALO (Helping Animals Live On) performs all adoptions for Maricopa County Animal Care and Controls West adoption facility. They CLAIM to be a “No Kill” agency, but it is only because they put all their euthanasia’s back under Maricopa County Animal Care and Controls numbers. They are as much to blame for all inconceivable acts performed on these animals as Maricopa County, if not more.

  18. To the killing apologists who have dropped by to post comments under fake names and e-mail addresses blaming the public and defending the killing of these puppies, your comments are in the moderation queue. They will be rotting there, which is better than they deserve. Sod off.

  19. Seriously? How are they not charged with a criminal offense of animal cruelty? They fight this type of abortion because it is a human, why are animals lives any less valuable? I would like to have someone explain to me why ALL LIFE is not given the same weight? Animals have feelings, were put on this earth beside us to walk with us. Why is their creation any less than our creation? I just don’t get the arrogance of man to think that animals are less important than us. I believe all life is sacred and should be protected and valued equally to us. These people need to be held accountable for a full term abortion because that is what it was. If it is illegal for a human, it should be illegal to do to a dog. PERIOD. Life is life and those little innocent babies suffered as did their mom who probably mourns for them. ANIMAL ABUSE! THE DOCTOR AND THE SHELTER SHOULD BE CHARGED.

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