My Photo

Keep Up

Flickr


  • www.flickr.com
    christiekeith's items Go to christiekeith's photostream

« ' Unwanted ' : It ' s not for animals anymore | Main | Can veterinarians and pet owners trust compounding pharmacies? »

22 September 2010

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Valerie

Amen, and no $&*#!

http://www.southjerseylocalnews.com/articles/2010/09/22/opinion/doc4c9a3fa2f40db402541392.txt



That wingnut is getting really predictable.

Gina Spadafori

Isn't it interesting that Ingrid Newkirk is finding the challenge to her nihilistic world view presented by no-kill so alarming that she's spewing lies over her own name, instead of trotting Daphna Nachminovitch out to do it?



WHY IS ANYONE STILL LISTENING TO PETA???

Barbara Saunders

It has always seemed tragic and ironic to me: If I find a lost kitten on the street and take her into my home, I can keep her without any approval by "the authorities", yet I might be rejected by an animal shelter if I don't have official landlord approval or make a faux pas and say that I intend to use the cat for "mousing" - even if the shelter is going to subsequently kill the kitten.



Trust should be the default mode of operation.

Valerie

She doesn't even bother to use any known or consistent definition of 'hoarding'. According to the researchers at Tufts, hoarders, in addition to being mentally ill, relentlessly acquire animals and are unwilling to give them up. How then can shelters which (she claims) limit admissions and adopt out animals to anyone who wants one, simultaneously be 'institutional hoarders'.



That is a conundrum, but I don't think I'll spend much time pondering it.



As Mr Spock would say, "Your argument is so illogical as to be unworthy of refutation."

MizShepherdist

Here, here! Excellent explanation of the difference! So, so right on.



Thank you.

MizShepherdist

WHY IS ANYONE STILL LISTENING TO PETA???



Comment by Gina Spadafori

*************************



Gina, if you figure it out, let me know. I have one otherwise very intelligent friend who still belongs and believes. *sigh*

LynnO

Nice, thanks. I was on the same page with H.Houlahan. I think kill shelters are what tweak no-kill rescues into taking on more than they can handle.

I found it very refreshing when animal control here opted to STOP killing animals because they were busy with a summer renovation project. A rescue friend of mine said: "I have a friend at Animal Control, if you want a dog from there, just let me know!"

Aside from the fact that I can get any number of dogs without going to Animal Control, I told her if Animal Control wasn't killing them, then why not let them stay there?! (They have more space and budget to care for them than I do.)

Tom

Christie, a well-written insight into this subject. You crystallized a couple important issues for me. Thanks.



Along these same lines I find it baffling why rescuers, totally shut out by shelter directors all across North America, still loudly demand that shelter directors listen to their advice. They often scream at the top of their voices that they MUST BE HEARD OR ELSE!



The baffling part is not that shelters are not paying attention to rescuers, but that rescuers and fosters do not function anything like shelters: they do not cage their animals and I've never met a rescuer or foster that kills their animals when not placed in a reasonable time.



Rescue groups are springing up all around this country, but still see sheltering as the only game in town. I'm wondering when rescuers will figure it out that shelters in their present form really aren't necessary. Once we have sufficient numbers of rescuers and donations fall at shelters, what do you suppose will happen to the shelter industry?

Pamela

Very well-written discussion of the debate. Thank you.



I think of the two approaches when I think of my first dog adoption (20 years ago) and most recent one. My first dogs came from the Philadelphia SPCA. Dogs were in noisy, crowded, smelly buildings surrounded by a cacophany of barking. Although I hoped to adopt an adult dog, I couldn't identify one that wasn't so traumatized by the experience as to be unreadable.



My most recent adoptee came from the Tompkins County SPCA, a no kill shelter then being managed by Nathan Winograd.



The dogs were quiet and comfortable in their glass condos. It was easy to visit with a dog and see their personality.



You only have to visit a no-kill shelter to really see the difference.

Christie Keith

Well, there are LOTS of places to go with this one!

H. Houlahan

I thought you were going somewhere else with this.



That is, shelter killing creates the emotional impetus and self-justification for many hoarders.



"I can't give them up to the SPCA, they'll just kill them there!"



Well, hard to argue with the lady with 75 cats oozing green gunk from their eyes and noses when you know that this is TRUE.



Hard to argue with the guy who picked that one-more-kitten-than-he-can-handle and is on his way to a Bad Situation because he knows that bringing the ditch moggie to the shelter is likely doom.



It would be a lot easier for an animal lover with marginal mental and emotional balance to avoid going down the road to hoarding animals if she had less objective basis for her compulsion to "protect" the critters from the "humane society."



And when someone is already a full-fledged, shin-deep-shit-and-dead-puppies-under-the-bed hoarder, it is a LOT easier to get him to cooperate with authorities and release the animals if he has the assurance that the animals won't be summarily killed.

Erich Riesenberg

I agree with H Houlahan and I think what is needed is for the rescuers to slow down a bit and start combatting the bad shelters. Why let the lunatics run the asylum?



And I understand LynnO's point but I do not think being at a No Kill facility makes an animal safe, the No Kill model only works when the public adopts and fosters from No Kill.



I will never again adopt or assist in any way a high kill shelter if I can work with a No Kill or rescue group instead. They NEED every bit of help they can get to work.

Kelly

When people continue to go on and on about the definition of hoarding and keep referring it to the Tuft's study....they should look a little harder at who set up the study, who donated to it, who were interviewed as experts on the subject and who regularly refers back to it. Maybe why it has never been embraced by the mental health community is because they never had any input from the beginning on the current definition being used. I went to a "hoarding bill" hearing last year and everyone from the mental health community (and they were well represented, from the seniors to the crisis centers) spoke against the bill because of the double talk used in representing the bill. Does it not seem odd that the people presenting the bill would not seek the approval or advice of the people who directly take care of the mental health issues, but would instead try to sneak a bill through by riding the coat tails of a well publicized "hoarding" case going on at the time? Unfortunately, it is the elitist attitudes by some in rescue, animal control and the HSUS that contribute and compound the problem of the woman with the 75 sick cats and other examples mentioned above.

CatPrrson

This is a very thought-provoking post, Christie. Thank you.



Randy Frost, who authored the hoarding article, has done research with Gail Steketee on the phenomenon of hoarding in general. True animal hoarders - the mentally ill ones - seem to hoard "stuff" as well. So there is a difference between the "rescue out of hand" hoarders and the mentally ill ones - it seems that hoarders (of stuff and animals) are compensating for a chaotic and emotionally barren childhood in many cases. (I highly recommend Frost and Steketee's hoarding research.)



Now as for the "rescue hoarders" - I agree with H. Houlahan, that what tips many of these people over into hoarding is "I want to give them a chance." The compulsion to keep more cats (or dogs or whatever) than one can care for is, I believe - and in my experience talking with people - as much triggered by the local animal control euthanizing for space, or in some cases not even taking cats at all. So people do "bad things" - take in more animals than they can care for, dump their cats at feral feeding colonies - saying to themselves, "At least this way they have a chance." And I really AM blaming the kill model in these cases. If you know that taking that sad-eyed waif to the shelter or having to surrender your beloved pet for whatever reason won't mean an automatic death sentence - chances are that people WILL take their pets to the shelter. Or if they are given help to foster the animal in their home until it can be adopted, with a rescue group or shelter and the fosterer working together to find the animal a new home.



Ironically (in the traditional kill view!) this means people CARE. They don't WANT to see an animal killed. There are cruel people, crazy people, and indifferent people - but I believe that the public by and large needs guidance, not hectoring.



I wonder what the hoarding rates are in no-kill communities versus high-kill areas, taking out the truly mentally ill cases? It would be interesting to find out.

bestuvall

Kind of hard to raise MONEY when all of the animals are comfortable and find homes.. MUCH easier to BLAME the public.. kill lots of animals.. and then say IT'S YOUR FAULT and if you want it to stop send MONEY NOW.. No Kill is an effective way to STOP hoarding.. ( whatever that is.. to many people today it is more than two pets..) If people knew that shelters were actually shelters.. not killing machines.. then perhaps they might actually take the animals there..

gingersnap

excellent,excellent article.



Thank you, Christie.

Matt

The murderers are trying to make "Hoarding" their new myth. Their old myth, the "pet overpopulation" one was shot down by Nathan Winograd and others, and "the killing is kind" myth has always been absurd to any sane individual.



Now the murderers are getting desperate, so now they are trying to brainwash the public into thinking that No Kill= hoarding. WE MUST SHOOT DOWN THIS MYTH IMMEDIATELY BEFORE IT SPREADS LIKE OTHER MYTHS HAVE..LIKE WILDFIRE.



Indeed a No Kill shelter cares so much about their fellow living souls that they dont murder them. It doesnt take a rocket scientist to realize that these same, loving, life revering No Kill Shelter operators arent going to let animals suffer or live in bad conditions....no..only kill shelters do that, because only those who dont value someone's life, will let them suffer, and die.



No Kill = NON CRUELTY. ( Non hoarding).



P.S. the killers are trying to say that there is a 'hoarding epidemic'. No there isnt.

The only epidemic there is, is the killing epidemic, and those who have no regard for someone else's life, are the ones who will hoard them and neglect them.



No Kill is the opposite of the lazy, killing, hoarding status quo of shelter practices.



No kill is the epitomy of hard work, to save lives and let those precious individuals enjoy their lives in a great environment until they are adopted.



Another myth shot down.

Take THAT animal killers, and stick it where the sun dont shine.

You're running out of excuses and No Kill is growing, growing, growing, growing.

Matt

"Kind of hard to raise MONEY when all of the animals are comfortable and find homes.. MUCH easier to BLAME the public.. kill lots of animals.. and then say IT’S YOUR FAULT and if you want it to stop send MONEY NOW.. No Kill is an effective way to STOP hoarding.. ( whatever that is.. to many people today it is more than two pets..) If people knew that shelters were actually shelters.. not killing machines.. then perhaps they might actually take the animals there.."





Awesomely well said!

Joy

I agree, "hoarding" is an over-used (or improperly used) term in many situations. But is there a more appropriate or accepted term to describe a rescue person who, because of sheer volume or lack of resources, cannot provide the animals kept in their shelter/home with adequate care?

Kelley

I love the no-kill movement and have been a proponent for many years. I think it can do ALMOST anything. But one thing it can't do is cure mental illness. Hoarding is a symptom of some sort of mental illness.



@Kelly great points and ones I keep pointing out, but people refer to that Tufts study as if it were gospel.



@CatPrrson - I think the Randy Frost article points out the discrepancy in what even experts in the field think "hoarding" actually is. A good link to hear a different point of view (NPR interview) which basically says no one really knows what it is, what causes it or how to treat it.

http://www.wfpl.org/2010/06/08/what-makes-a-hoarder/



I think it is ridiculous to claim there is such a thing as a "rescuer hoarder". They are diametrically opposed, as long as the rescuer is in fact adopting out animals. People who have gotten behind in their housework are not "hoarders." Any reasonable definition of "hoarding" is going to include "unable to let go of whatever it is that is being hoarded." I have a friend who exhibits hoarding behavior. He hoards things like: all paper, including empty envelopes (I happen to be his social security disability payee, and attempted to throw away an empty envelope in which his disability check had come, and he threw a hissyfit in Walmart over it), condiment packets (even though he has thousands he always asks for more and never uses any of them), etc. That's hoarding. Not accidentally getting in over one's head and taking in more animals than you can handle. Rescuers who get in trouble like that should feel safe in going to someone and asking for help. Currently in most places that will bring the wrath of animal control down on you - much quicker than doing something REALLY bad to an animal (use your imagination here, I don't want to type about it). Newspaper articles about "the crazy hoarder with x number of cats/dogs" sell a lot better than "person who did x bad thing to an animal" - in fact, the "hoarding" cases usually make the front page here, while DOGFIGHTING arrests are not even covered! Shelters and rescue agencies make a lot more money off them too - "we took in x animals and need money/crates/litterboxes/xpens/bleach/food bowls/whatever for their care makes a LOT more money than "we took in one animal that had x bad thing done to it." Dumping cats at feral colonies, while indeed bad, is again the antithesis of a "hoarder" - and the person may be doing it because they are afraid they will get busted as a "hoarder" which will entail the forcible removal of ALL their animals and very possibly their death. This whole thing has gone way too far and needs to stop.

Cait

What's scary is the increasing perception that anyone with more than "X" number of pets MUST be a hoarder. I had a scary conversation on a dog board last week where I was informed that it was absolutely not about condition, too many dogs was too many dogs, period and as someone who had stuck up for the person who had just had their animals seized, my defense made ME suspect! (My defense was that if the conditions were such that the local ACO couldn't justify pulling ANY dogs and wrote not a single citation for feces in the house or yard or ANYTHING, then it didn't matter how mnay dogs the person had, really"- it might be something else bad, but it certainly wasn't hoarding.)

Kelley

@Joy - "Overwhelmed rescuer?" (Which almost every rescuer has been at some point. And which deserves compassion and assistance, not predawn raids, forcible removal of animals, listing on "petabuse.com", front page newspaper coverage, arrest & subsequent criminal action). Unfortunately it seems no one wants to come up with a solution, other than forcibly removing the animals and then helping the animals while throwing the person to the wolves.



As someone smarter than me said, and it may be someone in this thread even - "You can't do right by doing wrong."

You can try, and even believe you are, but you really can't.

Kelley

@Cait - that IS scary. What I would like to know is what you believe the "something else bad" they might be doing if AC was unable to find anything to cite these folks on?



I know of a person who runs a sanctuary out of her home and has 80 cats. She is also able to pay people $10 per hour to come in and clean in 8 hour shifts, at least 2 people per day who are exclusively dedicated to cleaning, vet on staff, as well as numerous volunteers. However all some people would have to hear is "80 cats."

Cait

@Kelley - the person could be a sub-standard breeder of some variety. They could be a lot of things that aren't illegal but are still not things I think are ethical. But my point was that we didn't KNOW any of those things- and labelling them a hoarder sheerly based on number of dogs was extremely problematic.

Joy

I never understood the meaning of 'hoarder' to be a definition based on any particular number. I've always thought the tragedy of a hoarding situation is more about the lack of care provided to the animals.



Maybe hoarding isn't the correct term but there ARE rescue people out there who do mistreat the animals in their care. Certainly not the norm in my experience, but they do exist. For instance, someone who chains dogs up outdoors because there's no more room inside the home. Or ones with garages full of cages stacked high of filthy puppies who don't see the light of day save for trips to an adoption event. And worse...but I don't want to come off as judging. I,m not.



Is there no other acceptable response to that than to say they are simply "overwhelmed"?



I don't know where the lines are being drawn. Do hoarders sometimes become rescue people or vice versa? Is it possible for a rescuer to become abusive or neglectful as a result of being overwhelmed? What should happen in a case like that?

Gina Spadafori

I know of a person who runs a sanctuary out of her home and has 80 cats. She is also able to pay people $10 per hour to come in and clean in 8 hour shifts, at least 2 people per day who are exclusively dedicated to cleaning, vet on staff, as well as numerous volunteers. However all some people would have to hear is “80 cats.”



Comment by Kelley — October 11, 2010



I hope she has a 501(c)3, a board of directors and enough people to step in if something happens to prevent her from paying the help. Because if she's a one-woman show she's one paycheck/accident away from being a lead story on the 5 o'clock news.

Kelley

@Gina yes she does. By no means is she a friend of mine, can't stand her personally, but she does have all those things.

Kelley

@Joy - there IS a difference between abuse and neglect. To me abuse implies a level of intent - dogfighting, throwing kittens out of the window on the highway, dismembering cats - all of which has happened in my city - but who do they go after - "hoarders". We have had kittens being tossed out of car windows for AT LEAST 10 years. "Neglect" could mean a lot of things - someone who only cleans their litterbox every other day instead of 3x a day, someone whose animals get a bit matted, maybe someone who is behind in their shots - all of which would not raise an eyebrow if there was only one animal but if there are 16 dogs (or whatever) it becomes a BIG DEAL.



But really, in my opinion, you CAN'T be a hoarder and be adopting out animals, because by any reasonable definition "hoarding" involves HOLDING ON TO THINGS and not letting them go. NOT adopting them out.



If someone were to chain dogs up here there is an anti chaining ordinance, so that would be handled through whatever remedy there is for that. I'd have to look it up.





As far as filthy puppies are concerned, I don't know, I really don't. Clearly she needs some assistance cleaning. Is it better to help her wash the puppies, offer to foster some, or whatever, better or is calling in AC better? Given the option, if you were in a kill shelter, which would you choose, a short time in a filthy cage and an adoption, or a nice clean 3 day stay and then the needle? If she's taking them to adoption events with the intent of adopting them out, she's not a hoarder. Remember my example of the one envelope and not being able to throw it away. That doesn't mean there aren't other problems, but hopefully those problems could be cured with intervention (not animal control rolling in and seizing all the animals, which often stresses them enough that they die anyway). Anyway I'm going on too long.



I can also tell you that crazy rumors get spread, generally the first reports in the paper are inaccurate, and sometimes they go back and correct things after the damage is done.





Yesbiscuit, who I consider very pro seizure, blogged about such a case recently. She is a much better writer than I am so not going to repeat it all here:



http://yesbiscuit.wordpress.com/2010/10/07/cursory-examination-does-not-stand-up-in-animal-cruelty-case/



I'm all up in her comments too.

Mary frances

Another great article (with great comments to match)- I'll be sending this to boost the morale of a friend who works to adopt cats like no one else I have ever met. (and unbelievable she gets her share of criticism)



this will help clarify - thank you Christie.

Peter J. Wolf

I continue to be astonished at the incomprehensible resistance to no-kill.



It's one thing to be slow coming around to a better way; it's something else altogether to dig in your heels in the face of a proven alternative--especially when that alternative means saving so many lives.

Gwen Lebec

Winograd is the self-declared leader of the No Kill movement and the primary speaker / writer on the topic. So his message - often negative - is the message of the movement.

"It’s also why the no-kill movement doesn’t use negative messaging in its shelter managment model." - I think this statement is inaccurate. So is the statement that "No Kill activists are...not about demonizing anyone..." Also inaccurate: "But the truth is, there is no shelter model less likely to tolerate, encourage or engender warehousing and hoarding than the no-kill movement." In 2007 almost 300 animals released to rescuers from the LA City shelters ended up with an animal hoarder. Almost every animal hoarder - at least in So. CA - gets animals from rescue groups with no questions. Easy acquisition, just say you are a rescuer. Yet when there was a proposal in LA to require rescue groups to meet minimum USDA standards of care, the No Kill rescue community went nuts!

Don't get me wrong. The traditional shelters got locked into a negative paradigm of endless killing and the No Kill movement has kicked that door open and demanded better - and was right to do so. Thank goodness it came along. But there is also problems on that side of the philosophical equation that are not being dealt with because of the committment to maintain the halo and positive image the movement currently wears. That's why, until we are all ready to deal with complexity and not gloss over the pros and cons of either side, animals will still lose out. You have an important forum here. You should be a leader in dealing with the complexities.

Christie Keith

Gwen, you're spewing propaganda. Either NAME THEM and provide evidence of what you're saying, or don't participate here. We aren't 1950s America and you're not McCarthy, although you're doing a darn good imperstonation of him.

Because I say you're making this up. If you can't prove what you're saying, this is not the blog for you.

Christie Keith

Gwen: I didn't mention Nathan Winograd anywhere in this post.

As to "objectivity," I'll quote Jon Stewart: "I don't want balanced news. I want to know what the *bleep* is going on." If I've made any factual errors, please point them out so I can correct them.

Gwen Lebec

Lots of No Kill rescue groups keep animals in small shipping crates, stacking them on top of each other, sometimes filling a garage. The animals are lucky to get out even 15 minutes a day and they often live like this for weeks, months or years. Pretending that they are all nice folks who foster one or two dogs in their yard in conditions their own pets receive is to deny the reality of the horror that has come along with the No Kill movement. This is happening everywhere and is defended by many in the No Kill movement. There are about 50 rescue groups like this within 30 miles of my office in So CA. Some are well known.

Gwen Lebec

This is not an objective article. I have yet to hear Nathan Winograd speak without him demonizing everyone that works in animal shelters. He accuses them of working there because they want to kill animals, etc. That approach will not get everyone marching together in the same direction. The problems are really complex and both sides have some valid points and both sides have their problems. Painting the No Kill movement as the good guys doing only good things is simplistic, divisive, and inaccurate.

Christie Keith

Joy, I'm discussing communications, not any specific incidents. Language. And the entire context is a discussion of opponents to the no kill movement.

Actual incidents and allegations need to be evaluated on a case by case basis. I'd think that is obvious.

Joy

Christie, part of your response to me was that it irritates you that shelters often allege things about rescue groups that the shelter itself is doing on an institutional scale.



I was just commenting back that it doesn't make it (the allegation) untrue just because the accuser is guilty of the same thing.



I just think its a little simplistic to assume that all people/organizations who label themselves no-kill are automatically going to operate humanely. Much less to accuse anyone who points out abuse/neglect happening within a no-kill group of being an "opponent" of the no-kill movement.

Patricia Moore

Absolutely love the points made in this post! I am glad to have read it after being referred here on Dr. Patty Khuly's recommendation in today's blog: http://www.petmd.com/blogs/fullyvetted/2010/oct/no_kill_controversy

Shelters need to emulate the hearts of those whom they are claiming to protect; that is, openness, trust, and faith that the human beings will do the right thing when they adopt. It is the kill shelters that seem to have the "us versus them" mentality toward the public and the over the top adoption rules and regulations that reject more adoptive homes than accept them.

Patricia Moore

Christie Keith

Joy, there are definitely abuses in the animal sheltering and rescue world. What irritates me, though, is that shelters often allege things against rescuers and, for that matter, individual owners, that they themselves are doing on an institutional scale.



I'd reserve the term "hoarding" for situations where people have more animals than they can care for, don't see it, and refuse to let any of them go. There has to be some element of compulsion and denial/delusion to rise to "hoarding" levels for me.



I guess I'd just use the terms "abuse" and "neglect," when appropriate, to describe it when organizations and institutions, as well as individuals, abuse and neglect animals who are in their care -- including killing them because they don't have the creativity or desire or skills to use proven solutions to save them.

Joy

But the act of abuse/neglect is not negated just because a pot calls a kettle black. Right?

Christie Keith

You mean, like the law of gravity isn't negated because someone thinks they can fly?



I honestly don't understand your question.

Joy

Well, I'm certainly not "pro-seizure" or resistant to no-kill. I also agree with the position that "hoarder" is not a term that should be used to describe overwhelmed rescue folks who are attempting to adopt out homeless pets.



But with all these new phrases and accusations in the rescue world, I was just wondering if there were any appropriate or acceptable ways to describe or handle true abuse/neglect when it happens in a rescue situation.



Is the answer just to say it never happens or that, if it does, the responsibility lies with others who should be providing intervention resources?

Joy

Wow. Why are there "sides" to this issue at all? And why so much anger?

David S. Greene

Gwen, you haven't responded to Christie's request to back up your assertions from your previous comment. Give us some evidence of the "50 rescue groups within 30 miles of your office" that

keep animals in small shipping crates, stacking them on top of each other, sometimes filling a garage. The animals are lucky to get out even 15 minutes a day and they often live like this for weeks, months or years.

I'd love to know who these 50 No Kill rescue groups are. This isn't an anonymous AOL or Yahoo chat room or Fox News. You can't just throw unsubstantiated allegations around here. Please, put up or shut up.

Christie Keith

Gwen wrote:

“It’s also why the no-kill movement doesn’t use negative messaging in its shelter managment model.” - I think this statement is inaccurate.

Based on what evidence? I'm not aware of any negative messaging in the no-kill shelter management model. Give me an example.

So is the statement that “No Kill activists are…not about demonizing anyone…”

Again, what do you base that on? I'm not referring to intra-movement battles, but explicitly am discussing how the GENERAL PUBLIC is treated. The no-kill shelter management model is based on building good relationships with volunteers, community members, donors, local businesses -- all you have to do is look at the model and you see it spelled out.

You wrote:

In 2007 almost 300 animals released to rescuers from the LA City shelters ended up with an animal hoarder. Almost every animal hoarder - at least in So. CA - gets animals from rescue groups with no questions. Easy acquisition, just say you are a rescuer.

LA's City Shelters are TRADITIONAL SHELTERS! I don't really see that as evidence, but if it were, it would prove my point, not yours.

Then:

Yet when there was a proposal in LA to require rescue groups to meet minimum USDA standards of care, the No Kill rescue community went nuts!

Shelter access is an almost sacred issue in the no-kill movement. For every story I hear about a "hoarder" masquerading as a rescuer -- allegations that no one offers proof of any more than you have -- I hear ten about shelters violating state law by denying access of rescue groups to animals on the kill lists. And rescues and volunteers not whistleblowing, because they're threatened with losing access to the animals at all.

Are there abuses? I'm sure there are. But I know which side of the scale is heavier.

Which still doesn't prove ANYTHING AT ALL about my point, which is about the philisophical underpinnings of "warehousing" and "hoarding" and this whole debate.

Jen

"Are there abuses? I’m sure there are. But I know which side of the scale is heavier."



C'mon people! Demonizing each other will never advance the mutual goal that both "sides" have, which is to help animals.



This is a complex issue and people need to come together and help each other out.



Yes - traditional shelters can do more to improve their practices, as can no-kill groups. Instead of being in denial, why don't you put your energy into working with each other to solve the problem?



I think the creation of USDA regulated standards of care for shelters/rescues is an EXCELLENT start - one that I can't see either "side" arguing against. Standards of care exist for many animal populations (ie. lab animals) - why shouldn't they exist for animals in shelters and rescues?

Christie Keith

Jen wrote:



I think the creation of USDA regulated standards of care for shelters/rescues is an EXCELLENT start - one that I can’t see either “side” arguing against.



Ummm, because most rescuers operate out of their homes, and USDA standards are for KENNELS? Let's just start there.



Additionally, this concept was not presented to me as being something promoted for shelters/rescues, but for RESCUE GROUPS ALONE, to prevent hoarding. It is nothing more and nothing less than a way to limit shelter access for rescue groups in violation of the Hayden Law, to solve a "hoarding" problem being alleged to be so huge that it justifies undoing all the good Hayden has done -- when in reality, the scale is weighted in the other direction: That shelters more frequently violate Hayden by denying access than there are hoarders masquerading as rescuers.

Lis

Jen, is there a separate USDA standard of care for shelters and rescues, or are we talking about the same old USDA puppy mill "standard of care," which would be impossible for any rescue organized around the use of foster homes to meet? And which would, in fact, be a dramatic down-grading of living conditions for those pets?

Christie Keith

I wrote:



“Are there abuses? I’m sure there are. But I know which side of the scale is heavier.”



And Jen replied:



C’mon people! Demonizing each other will never advance the mutual goal that both “sides” have, which is to help animals.



Jen, you're either deliberately or carelessly mis-reading what I said. I was talking only about denial of shelter access to rescue groups vs the number of hoarders that masquerade as rescuers. I hear from rescuers constantly that they're being denied, or threatened with denial of, shelter access by shelters.



Exactly how many hoarders to you think are out there pretending to be rescue groups? Even the most absurd allegations don't come close to balancing out that equation.



As to this:



Yes - traditional shelters can do more to improve their practices, as can no-kill groups. Instead of being in denial, why don’t you put your energy into working with each other to solve the problem?



The problem is this: You want incrementalism, that traditional shelters just find a way to do a little better all the time, and one day in the far distant kumbaya future, we'll finally stop killing healthy and treatable animals.



But the No Kill Movement discovered that we don't have to wait, or do it a tiny bit at a time; we can just do it. We found out how. We want everyone to implement those steps and stop killing animals right away, not someday down the road.



Your plea isn't going to make any sense in that context. Why would it? How could it?

Jen

Lis - I am referring to a new set of standards that is currently in the works (definitely not the puppy mill standards! god forbid...)



Christie - The fact of the matter is that this problem cannot be fixed overnight and we need everyone on board to move forward in a positive direction. By continuing to demonize shelters and their employees, you are putting energy into creating divisiveness that won't help any animal.



Let's think about it. If this was an easy problem to fix wouldn't it no longer be a problem?



Historically, most progressive changes have taken time. You are asking for an "all or nothing" approach which is not realistic. You can spend time complaining that the shelters are not making changes fast enough or you could put efforts into making changes (such as the new standards) that are going to help us reach the tipping point sooner.



Again this is a very complex issue with many stakeholders - including the public. It is not about bad guys and good guys. You cannot simplify this.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner