Random thoughts

Sharing some thoughts, ideas, and some laughs


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Time to Party ? Time to Mourn? Time to ACT!

There’s a party going on! Yep, no doubt there will be much backslapping, cheering and mutual aggrandizing at LCHS today and deservedly so. Well done Strooband, Kushner, Davidson et al, you did it. You and your one minute one dollar proxies won the day.

We Did It! We Won!

We Did It! We Won!

CONGRATULATIONS, now let the killing commence

We lost

We lost

It had NOTHING to do with animal welfare, NOTHING. The LCHS AGM was all about sticking it to the taxpayers and donors of St Catharines. It was nothing more than a group of vindictive, immature, spiteful , egotistical, small minded, morally bankrupt individuals more concerned with maintaining a death grip on their pathetic “positions” than caring for the well being of animals.

The meeting had been choreographed for weeks and in the end, mission accomplished. Had this “operation been carried out with any degree of ethics or responsibility or with even an iota of decency I would not be as bothered but it was a case of pure and simple bullying. Apparently Roberts Rules of Order, the Ontario Corporations Act and a specific motion of City Council are of no consequence to the mighty demagogues of LCHS. Apparently there is one set of rules for we, the unwashed masses and then there is the golden rule for LCHS. “He who owns the gold rules and in this case the gold was the purchased proxies.

Sorry, I just cannot conjure up the energy to go through the whole charade again.

You can “read all about it” in the Standard

St Catharines Standard

St Catharines Standard

and in Ros’ blog   .http://rosalindwent.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/lchs-membership-so-close-yet-so-far/#comment-943

To those beautiful healthy, treatable dogs and cats that have been killed in the last ten years – OVER 25,000, think about it, TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND, we tried. To those thousands of healthy, treatable dogs and cats that will be killed at LCHS, we tried.

The Kushner Cocktail

The Kushner Cocktail

We have not given up, we shall continue in our efforts to STOP THE KILLING!


2 Comments >

The Executive Director of any well run Humane Society will be the first to state in order to save the lives of those animals that have the misfortune to make their way to the shelter, it is imperative to have strong partnerships rescue groups in order to be successful

In the course of researching animal welfare and animal rights issues I have become aware of the ever increasing number of animals rescue facilities that have “gone bad” the result of which is the discovery and subsequent seizure of hundreds of sick, weak, miserable creatures needing care and homes.

How does this happen, how does something that was created with good intentions and great convictions become a place of pain and anguish. How does one go from taking in the homeless, weak and suffering with a goal to find forever homes to becoming a place where starvation, illness and death is the norm. How does rescue become hoarding.hoarding-1

There it is folks, the dirty word hoarding.  Regardless of how many times rescuers, shelter reformers, welfare activists say otherwise, hoarding does exist, in fact it has become so prevalent that there are studies and research being performed at numerous Universities and Medical Centres throughout North America.

Hoarding is an illness. Whether hoarding inanimate objects or animals it is till an illness but when animals are hoarded it is cruel, inhumane and just plain wrong. Animals suffer and die at the hands of those that are very ill and that are incapable or refuse to obtain help.

“Hoarding is not about animal sheltering, rescue, or sanctuary, and should not be confused with these legitimate efforts to help animals. It IS about satisfying a human need to accumulate animals and control them, and this need supercedes the needs of the animals involved.”
—HARC

Janice Palm's dogs.

There are an incredible number of people that have dedicated their lives to the rescue and shelter of dogs, cats, horses, in fact just about any animal. There are great rescue facilities that do just that, they rescue and then shelter animals until such time as they can be adopted. These animals are kept in sanitary, safe environments in which they are  fed and cared for, receive Veterinary care when required, are spayed and neutered, receive vaccinations and are free from pain and suffering. These are not the people about whom I am concerned. I am concerned about those folks that started out in this manner but then slid down a very slippery slope into hoarding hell.

How does this happen? Well, research indicates a number of reasons for hoarding  but the jury is still out on how one starts out doing good ends up going bad. It has been suggested that some rescuers are unable to say “we are full” and continue to accept animal from Humane Societies and other organizations until they are literally over run by the animals. No longer can spay and neutering be afforded so animals start reproducing within the rescue facility.  The rescuer can no longer afford Veterinary help and they are afraid to have anyone see the animals for fear they will be removed and killed. They do not wish to or are unable to admit they are in trouble and need help. So the hoarding begins. Cages are stacked one on top of the other, dogs and cats are found wallowing in their own feces. Paws and faces are burned from urine. They are starved, covered in sores from parasites and rubbing up against rusted wire cages.

There is always a great hue and outcry when a puppy mill is busted and rightly so, but a rescuer gone bad is no better than a puppy mill operator. In both cases the animals are suffering and dying in excruciating pain as a result of human indifference, illness greed or stupidity.

Those of us that rescue animals and profess to be supporters of no kill must assume some responsibility for the rescue centers to which we send the animals we “save”. It is not good enough to say we have transferred dogs and cats to foster homes and rescue groups hence the animals have not been killed thus are saved.  If we are shipping out innocent lives to a place of questionable care and potential misery how are we “saving” these animals?

Sure sending dogs and cats to rescue groups and foster homes “gets them off the books” and makes the stats look great for public consumption but if we are responsible for contributing to the demise of these animals at the hands of those that are no longer able to cope are we not part of the problem rather than part of the solution.

Do No Kill shelters listed on the No Kill Communities website http://www.no-killnews.com conduct follow up visits or checks to ensure the facility is safe, clean and caring for the animals? I don’t know. I do hope that some one can give me this information with some documentation as to how this is accomplished. Is there a reporting system for when the animals are adopted or how long they are kept in the rescue facility and how they are doing in the facility? Again, I would really like to know if this is  the case and again how it is accomplished? Are these animals shipped out and then forgotten about, “out of sight out of mind”?

How do we prevent these situations?

Linda Bruno http://www.nbcnews.com/id/38978396/ns/healthpet_health/#.UTz5Qhl3Yxq

Miguel Salgado http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/world/55343491-68/dogs-salgado-ogden-removed.html.csp

Elliots Friends Rescue http://www.spca.org/duncanville10212011

031311peta1_t607

The following  are links that are educational and important reading to learn more about hoarding and how rescue can become hell.

http://www.pet-abuse.com/cases/14219/OR/US/

http://advocacy.britannica.com/blog/advocacy/2009/02/prisoners-of-love-the-victims-of-animal-hoarding/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2748289/

http://vet.tufts.edu/hoarding/pubs/AngellReport.pdf

http://vet.tufts.edu/hoarding/pubs/Berry.pdf


1 Comment >

This is for Ms. Callie;
I am so sorry. I let you down. A lot of people tried to do the best for you but were thwarted at every move.  The dog walkers, Jordan Holder and others at LCHS, Animal Assistance of Niagara, Dave McMahon, all tried. All but those that should have, are paid to care and try to do the right thing. You sweet girl are another victim. You like so many before you and so many more to follow . Victims.

Please help Callie

Please help Callie

I have to believe in Karma.

No one should be allowed to get away with what this guy has done to this poor sweet girl and not be “rewarded”

This from the “compassionate” SOB!

Hi everyone,
As many of you know, Callie has been with a new foster parent for a little while now and she has been doing very well in her now home. A few weeks ago we asked for a foster parent after we found she was losing some weight. We also had blood test and x-rays done. Earlier today we learned that Callie has cancer and has little time left. The veterinarian has suggested to keep her in her foster home for her final week.
This is very sad news to share for a dog that so many people worked with and were quite fond of. Thank you to everyone for going to bat for Callie and finding her a loving and caring home to enjoy her few remaining days in. We (and Callie) truly appreciate it.
Kevin Strooband
Executive Director

CALLIE’S STORY

November 9, 2012 by | Leave a comment

Callie: On the night of October 17th, post AGM meeting that wasn’t I was speaking with one of the volunteers from LCHS. We chatted about the events of the evening which then led into discussion on other matters  and concerns, which then led to my learning about Callie. She was going to be killed within the week. Callie is a a beautiful 90 lb.King Shepherd Wheaten cross. She is a return adoptee as a result of a temperament issues.  She is an independent girl that loves to run and play. She loves her toys  but is quite reticent about sharing them. She is a high energy, full of spunk girl with a great sense of humour. Callie needs a home where she can run and play. Callie needs a child free home where she is the only furry companion. She is in the shelter and has been for a very long time Her cage, until very recently has  sported a PTS (due to aggression).

Emails were dispatched to rescue groups asking for others to post  Callie, they did and continue to do so.I contacted the very well known and highly respected Dog Trainer, Dave McMahon who immediately responded with an offer to profile Callie on his radio show and have her profile posted on his FB. He has even offered his services free of charge to her new family. One of the LCHS volunteers that works with Callie was to go on the show @ 8:50 am to talk about her. Very late the evening prior to the broadcast I receive a telephone call from the coordinator of the show asking me what was going on.   I am totally ignorant of the problem but apparently the volunteer has bailed on the interview BUT LCHS ED has stepped in to save the day! Strooband has discovered this golden opportunity to hit the airwaves, bumps the volunteer, rearranges the interview time, goes on the air and promotes himself and the Spay Neuter Clinic in a Public Service Message! Naturally, I tuned in at the previously agreed to scheduled time to listen to Strooband speak not knowing he had rescheduled and heard nothing until just before wrap up when some man (the coordinator)”called “in to elaborate on  Strooband’s profile of Callie to explain her issues. HUH?  Strooband had once again, made hay at the expense of one of the animals. He did not discuss Callie other than to say she was an aggressive dog  because he doesn’t know anything about her. He was going to kill her!

Animal Assistance  Niagara has been absolutely incredible. They have put up posters around town which have resulted in some interest calls. McMahon called me and offered me another shot on his show to promote Callie.

All of a sudden, Callie appears on a video on the LCHS FB page. It is a great video BTW and then a profile pic appears and she is available for adoption. This is great news and we are all delighted that not only is Callie alive (the PTS order has been removed from her enclosure), at least for now, but she is getting the attention she needs and deserves. Because, Strooband has finally stepped up, I have backed off, declining to go McMahon’s show suggesting that some one that knows her e.g. a volunteer speak on her behalf and have referred all inquiries regarding Callie to LCHS.

And then yesterday, I see this: click here to see how Callie is once again in jeopardy

The following is a posting Callie’s former person wrote in the LCHS Facebook.  Do YOU think Callie should have been killed as Strooband ordered?Judging from the final sentence it seems pretty clear Callie’s former person did not know she was on death row and is once again……….

“CALLIE is beautiful girl at the Lincoln County Humane Society at great risk of being euthanized. She is in URGENT need of a home, or even a foster home.”

“Hey everyone! I wanted to do a little post on Callie!
I had Callie for one year – and in a lot of ways it was one of the best years of my life! We went running every day, sometimes twice a day, and so much weekend hiking (car rides are her favorite)- she has so much energy! I loved the time we spent outside together…the reason I have decided to give her up, is because I work full time and have started school at night…trust me, I would much rather be running Callie in the fresh air :p :( Unfourtunately I also did not have the time to socialize callie to my horse, who is my 1st priority …she won’t be able to be the “horse show dog” I was hoping she could be. ….my horse will be 5 next year and we will be gone a lot to an environment that would be too much for cal…she would have to stay at the boarding kennel…she LOVES kids and no, she doesn’t bite to hurt people…if she has ever put her teeth on someone it would have been accidental. she’s a SWEET heart to people …she is capable of getting along with other dogs but under a very supervised watch…she really is a fantastic dog who deserves a loving home… if Callie is not adopted by 2013 I will be adopting her again myself…she is loving and beautiful and she deserves the right home…thank you LCHS for helping to find the right place for her

What Lisa did not know was that  contrary to what she was told by Strooband “for her (Callie), there is no alternative”, “she will be adopted”, Callie was going to be killed without any effort at finding her a home. And she was going to be killed within two weeks of her surrender, never getting a chance.

Many of us tried to save Callie. She was kept in the “stray” area for months where the public are not permitted. How would this accomplish adoption. She then made it to the adoption area where the public could see er but were afraid to approach due to the orange pylons in front of her enclosure and the signs warning she would bite. Really?  This is the same dog that was taken to a an adoptathon where she behaved beautifully. This is the same dog that had her picture taken with Santa with no problem.

Well, Mr. Strooband you are going to get your way, Callie is going to die and the best part is her death will not even count against your annual statistics. You didn’t have to stick a needle in this one’s heart. You just broke it, that’s all.

CALLIE

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1 Comment

Just the Facts M’am

It has taken some work and a heck of a lot of research but I think I may have finally figured out the players and their positions on animal welfare, animal rights however this tends to change depending in the direction of the wind at any given moment which makes it difficult to stay current.

I have made every effort to acquire information that is fact based. If I have made any erroneous statements in this blog I would request that I be informed as soon as is practicable WITH documented back up information. I will then make and share corrections, deletions, and additions as is appropriate.  I have no interest in pandering to one group or another but rather feel it is imperative that those of us who are concerned with animal welfare and animal rights are not only informed but also possess the facts.

One thing we all know is there is probably no other “cause” that elicits such emotion and passion as the animal welfare  and animal rights movements. We have all witnessed how the plight of animals brings out the absolute best and worst in all of us and I am no exception. One thing I have learned is that in order to succeed in any “cause” it is imperative that one is knowledgeable and armed with facts. Granted emotions will at least temporarily render most deaf (not mute unfortunately) but ultimately those that truly wish to succeed will gravitate towards the truth and the facts.

There are a number of organizations that are front and center when it comes to animal welfare and animal rights. Each has their own raison d’etre and each have their own criteria under which they operate and for some unknown reason each seems to have problems with the others. Again, I can only assume it is due to the passion and emotion involved with animal welfare  and animal rights that causes humans to become unreasonable, unkind, insulting and in some cases dangerous to those who may not be in TOTAL agreement because partial agreement clearly is not acceptable.

Lets take a look at some of these agencies/organizations and learn who they are and what they do AND what they do NOT do for animals and animal’s welfare. For the purposes of this blog I am focusing on the position the various agencies have stated are of their concern e.g. Mandatory Spay Neuter Legislation (MSNL), Trap Neuter Return (TNR), No Kill (NK)

PLEASE NOTE: the writer does not list the agencies/organization in this reporting in any order of importance, size, and preference. They are just listed! Please also note it would be wise to have your pain relief of choice handy as this is guaranteed to bring on a headache.

Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA):click here for website

“The Ontario SPCA is an open admission, For Life, organization; we strive to accept all animals.”

The OSPCA is comprised of over 50 adoption and animal welfare centers throughout the Province of Ontario. Of these 50 centers 15 are actual branches of the OSPCA and are governed by a central Board of Directors, the remaining 35 offices are Affiliates and are governed by their own Board of Directors. The OSPCA and Humane Society are synonymous.  please click here for OSPCA Facts

The OSPCA is funded by public donations however in many cases, the Branch or Affiliate will enter into a City Contract in which the Branch or Affiliate resides to service shelters, stray pick ups, licensing, investigations and cruelty complaints and numerous other services.

The OSPCA has clearly stated that it is opposed to No Kill and does kill in order to make space. Ontario SPCA Communities keep the animal as long as space permits and an adoptable animal remains physically and mentally healthy.” “Sadly, in some cases animals may be euthanized due to shelter overcrowding. Overcrowding threatens the lives of all the animals in our care due to stress, weakened immune systems and increased risk of disease transmission” please click here for FAQ

The OSPCA operates 3 high volume low cost spay neuter clinics in Ontario These clinics are state of the art facilities and when at peak efficiency will perform over 10,000 procedures per clinic per year. CEO Kate MacDonald states, “the Veterinarian should never see the metal of the operating table”. The OSPCA promotes TNR but as yet does not operate any programs such as TNR at this time.

Canadian Federation of Humane Societies (CFHS): click here for website

“Our role is to educate Canadians about responsible pet ownership and other animal welfare issues; to advocate for the humane treatment of all animals (in communities, on farms, in research labs and in the wild); and to unite & strengthen our member societies, helping them save the lives of more animals in their communities.”

The CFHS is a national voice for ALL animal welfare advocacy including, wildlife, domestic farm and companion animals. CFHS also addresses the many concerns animal advocates have for animals used in entertainment, breeding for profit and animals used in research. CFHS is a strong voice and promotes companion animal licensing, identification and spay neutering. Without actually stating their position the inference is that CFHS would be amenable to MSNL.

The CFHS does not actively operate shelters, clinics, TNR but rather is a watchdog for animal welfare in this country. The CFHS and its programs are funded entirely by donation from the public.

The position of CFHS on shelter killing would appear to be similar to that of the OSPCA that indicates that killing for space while not encouraged is necessary. I am unable to find a direct reference to the position taken by CFHS on No Kill in the CFHS information available but have requested their position and will report same upon receipt.

 The following link contains the position statements of the CFHS on a number of issues pertaining to animals in Canada. click here for more information

This link describes the many ways that CSFH has made an incredible impact on the welfare of animals in Canada in 2012 click here

No Kill Advocacy (NKA):click here for website

NKA is about Shelter reform. That is it, not rescue, nor other animal welfare issues, however, in order to be successful in obtaining and maintaining a No Kill Shelter a number of steps are required. These mandatory steps are called the No Kill Equation,  No Kill Primer. The NKA has become a very successful product created by Nathan Winograd that calls for the cessation of shelter killings. The NK premise is that of all the animals that find themselves in shelters across the United States, at least 90% of them are savable. These animals are healthy treatable animals that are adoptable and must not be killed for any other reason than irremediable suffering and vicious dogs.  See the following Matrix-2

The focus of NKA is on Shelter reform. They do not venture into animal cruelty, breeding for profit, rescue or other welfare issues. They do however have positions on these and many issues that do impact the aforementioned. NKA is opposed to MSNL, licensing, restricting the number of companion animals per location. For further information mandatorylaws-2

NKA is nothing if they are not rabid (pun intended) in their position on shelter reform, which is a really great thing. Do not even consider suggesting that there may be a better idea or another way or maybe try something else as this will find you in violation of the code which in turn will get you slapped with at least a verbal spanking by the powers that be or even worse find your self in litigation. These folks take no prisoners. It their way or the highway and there s no other way!

The No Kill Advocacy Centre is funded by donations.

The following is a statement from the NKA Center website:

Please note: There are other organizations that use the principles and ideas of the No Kill Advocacy Center, such as No Kill Nation, No Kill Revolution and others. While we encourage and welcome them, neither we nor Nathan are affiliated with them. There has been a lot of confusion on this issue.

No Kill Nation (NKN):click here for website

What they do I am not really sure. They advocate and vehemently support everything that NKA and specifically Nathan Winograd does, says, writes, walks and talks

NKN like NKA does not get involved with anything other than shelter reform although there was at least one rescue operation for which they solicited funding,click her for link

I believe, the main focus is on the “political” and “legal” side of shelter reform.  It would appear that any and all positions taken by NKA are echoed by NKN.

NKN solicits donation from the public in order to operate

No Kill Revolution (NKR): click here for facebook page

This is a Facebook group that espouses the NKA programs

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PeTA):click here for website

Peta is the premiere All things Animals Rights organization. They are funded by donation dollars that exceeded $35,000,000 in 2011. Love ‘em or hate ‘em it is indisputable they are the biggest, loudest, strongest animal rights operations in the world, all 3,000,000 of them. It cannot be disputed that Peta has had a significant impact on animal rights and as a result many cruel practices have been shut down and many animal now live in peace and harmony in their natural environment. They have made massive inroads into combating the fur industry with their crazy and sometimes offensive use of nudity but again it gets results. Ingrid Newkirk, founder is militant in her position on animals. She is opposed to animals being “used” in any way shape or form including companion animals guard & service dogs in fact Ms.Newkirk would like to see companion animals bred (or not ) out of existence. Regardless, there is no denying how much good Peta has accomplished for wild animals, animals used in farm, research, and entertainment. The problem begins when the nasty word euthanasia/killing crops up. Peta is all about killing any and all animals rather than have them spend time in cages or shelters. Ms. Newkirk brags of her experience in a shelter where she “killed hundreds and thousands “ of cats and dogs rather than have them suffer waiting to be adopted or euthanized by others. Apparently she kills much better than others.

Personally I think that Peta would be wise at sticking to what they do best and stay out of the sheltering business, they do a very poor job and it is obviously something in which they have no interest or any affection for. Killing 97% of the animals that enter the Norfolk Virginia Shelter is not exactly going to win over friends of the companion animal set. Again, Peta brags having some of the most important and high profile personalities amongst their supporters. That I truly do not get but heck I am just one little voice in the wilderness. For Peta’s position statements on many animal rights issues go here

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA): click here for website

“Founded in 1866, the ASPCA was the first humane organization in the Western Hemisphere. Our mission, as stated by founder Henry Bergh, is “to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States.” The ASPCA works to rescue animals from abuse, pass humane laws and share resources with shelters nationwide.

Over the years the ASPCA has become much more than a shelter for animals in need. The ASPCA has been involved in fighting for animals rights and their welfare at the grassroots level and all the way to the supreme court.

The ASPCA works to protect farm animals, companion animals, wildlife and animals used in entertainment to learn more click here

The ASPCA supports a number of initiatives and provides many programs to promote the care and well being of animals in the US. To read of some of their programs go to this link

The ASPCA is a strong proponent of spay and neuter, TNR and while they readily admit to resorting to killing in the vent of over crowding they have this to say about No Kill;

The ASPCA strongly supports “no kill” community coalitions (as opposed to a single organization within a community) that are committed to reducing the number of cats and dogs in that community who are at risk of becoming lost, abandoned or relinquished to shelters. Toward that end, the ASPCA supports efforts to maximize accessible and affordable spay/neuter services; practice TNR of feral cats; promote the adoption of homeless animals; educate potential guardians on pet selection, the use of microchips and visible ID tags; and provide ongoing expert training and behavior assistance to guardians so that they may live successfully with their companion animals.”

It doesn’t get much better than that. For more information on ASPCA Policy positions please click here

Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) for website click here

Much like the ASPCA, the HSUS is  an animal welfare and protection agency. The work of the HSUS is geared toward the prevention of cruelty to animals all over the United States and beyond in some cases. For the most part the HSUS works with the public by educating them. There are numerous programs to we encourage the public to watch for and report animal cruelty. By educating the public HSUS encourages better animal welfare in farms, the home, the entertainment industry and in the wild.

HSUS works with the many Humane Societies across the United States as a “back up” and works to “advocating for tougher laws, innovating programs to keep pets out of harm’s way in the first place, and by providing education and support to help shelters and rescue groups do the best job possible.”

To learn more about the important work of HSUS please go to this link

HSUS is funded by donations and operated a $231,000,000 budget in 2011

So these are the big players. You would think that the welfare of animals and the protection of animal rights would be the means to a positive, cooperative, constructive  and friendly platform for these organizations to work with one another. Not so. NKA is relentless in their vicious attacks on anyone and anything that even remotely disagrees with their positions. The attacks are personal and incredibly nasty. Be it HSUS, ASPCA and especially PeTA the gloves are off. The barrage of disgusting attacks on Ingrid Newkirk and PeTA are only exceeded by the attacks by PeTA on NKA and Winograd.

Why? How does this help the animals. How does wallowing in gutter attacks save the life of one cat or dog ?

Each of these organizations have made massive contributions to animal welfare and animal rights .  I admire the founders and those that carry on the missions of these fine animal welfare and animal rights groups. Do I agree with everything they say or do, heck no, but I respect their efforts to make the world a better place for the animals. What is it about people that makes us feel threatened by a different idea, position, approach, style and what is it about us that we resort to the lowest possible methods of attacking those by whom we feel threatened?

Very recently, I removed myself from the organizing committee of a movement about which I am very passionate. I did it because I knew by remaining involved on the “front lines” it would be divisive and as a result counter productive. There are strong able bodied people that are every bit as passionate if not more so that are at the helm of this cause  so I am in no fear of the desire to make the dream come true. So rather attacking  or undermining these fine people and their efforts, I choose to encourage from the sidelines and contribute where and when appropriate. I shall be among the first to congratulate their success applaud their efforts.

In their interim, there are plenty of animals in need. I shall find a niche to help.