A New Year-Time for Reflection-Not New Demands

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Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#1 Jan 1, 2013
What a shame - they still do not understand the concept of a budget nor do they understand why certain areas of the shelter should remain off-limits. As usual it's all about them. WE WANT, WE WANT!

Help Weatherford Shelter Pets

42 minutes ago.

Happy New Year!

Here are a few of the goals we will continue to press for to increase adoptions and lower euthanasia.

1. Volunteers being able to photograph ALL pets that come in, even before their stray hold is up. We know that pets are being put down in Building C, D and E that are not even given a chance at adoption due to no foot traffic allowed (off limit area) and no photographing/networking being done.

2. There are also dogs that possibly could have made it to rescue, had rescues been contacted and given a chance to save them before euthanasia. We would like to see staff contacting more rescues as soon as a purebreds come into the shelter. Allowing rescuers time to make room in their foster programs and to work out transport arrangements before the stray hold is even up.

3. We hope to see the City create and use more social media so people can see what animals are there (including those that are NOT yet available for adoption due to stray holds) so that more people may recognize pets and increase owner reclaimed/redeemed pets, share with rescues or for adoptions when stray hold is up.

4. Increased adoption hours open to the public; evening hours to increase traffic flow, thus more adoptions, more owner reclaims and pets being rescued.(ie: Tues-Friday from 11-8pm) Opening on Saturday longer hours (ie: 9-6pm) Being open on Sunday (ie: 11-4pm)

These are what we consider the most urgent and pressing matters that need worked on immediately. These are the same things we've been asking for and suggesting for many many months now. We hope to see these changes and more in 2013.

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#2 Jan 2, 2013
I agree with April as in her post below. Why can't the general public adopt purebred dogs?

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April Xavier "We would like to see staff contacting more rescues as soon as a purebreds come into the shelter." Question: WHY should rescues be given head of line over the public?

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Well now Bethany - it is bias and selfish not to let the general public adopt purebred dogs - all rescues are stuffed anyway. I looked at your facebook page - appears to be pictures of purebred dogs not mixed breeds?

**********

Bethany Watkins April, rescues often have better networking, a better understanding of that breed, its temperament, grooming needs, can screen prospective new homes better, etc. Purebred rescues should be taking the dogs of their breed! Even though the majority of dogs turned in arent purebreds, moving the purebreds out will leave more room for the rest

I don't see how the purebreds going into rescues appears biased. There are rescues for them so by all means try to get them into their breed specific rescues.

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All animals are photographed at intake, maybe not to your liking, but they are photographed - misinformation here:

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Help Weatherford Shelter Pets Heather, we said that we want ALL pets photographed upon intake. I think you misunderstood what was written.

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#3 Jan 2, 2013
Happy to see the animal girls promoting their kill the shelter signs again - guaranteed turn-off for most people. Some of us have decided to show our non-support for the businesses that you promote on your facebook pages. That's only fair after all trouble you have caused the city and the shelter with your false allegations of wrong doing.
Happy 2013 WCCouncil

Weatherford, TX

#4 Jan 2, 2013
Go play in the toilet. Maybe you will find a friend there. Crap loves crap. Do us all a favor and flush yourself while you are there

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#5 Jan 3, 2013
I cannot now, nor will I ever in good conscience support Parker County Pets Alive, Help Weatherford Shelter Pets and Parker Paws because of their actions in their attempt to destroy the shelter and those who work at the shelter.

I DO support the Weatherford/Parker County Animal Shelter. The shelter needs your support also. Monetary donations for medical supplies and food; old towels and blankets, can dog and cat food, cat litter, paper towels, cleaning supplies - anything you can donate would be greatly appreciated. I know these are difficult times for most of us - we are struggling to just get by. Maybe you are wondering how can I help; I have no money to spare; go to the shelter and spend a little time visiting with the animals, tell all your friends and relatives what a nice shelter facility we have and what kind and caring employees are working at the shelter, collect donations for the shelter, there are many ways to help that do not involve money only a very little time.

A special thanks goes to Jerry Durant for his generous donation to the shelter of the new cleaning supplies and equipment. The animals will now be less likely to suffer from disease and illnesses.
aminal person

Dallas, TX

#6 Jan 3, 2013
For MaryRoseSmith,
I as concern person cannot understand your post above. You are a total "numcomepoop".

1st you put down some sources of help for the Weatherford Parker County Animal Shelter, the pure breed rescureers. Now you ask for thr public help for supplies.
Are you so enthualld with our city council that seems to be unable to fund the shelter properly.
Why do you want to turn away help when it is offered?

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#7 Jan 3, 2013
aminal person wrote:
For MaryRoseSmith,
I as concern person cannot understand your post above. You are a total "numcomepoop".
1st you put down some sources of help for the Weatherford Parker County Animal Shelter, the pure breed rescureers. Now you ask for thr public help for supplies.
Are you so enthualld with our city council that seems to be unable to fund the shelter properly.
Why do you want to turn away help when it is offered?
Pure breed rescues should be the last resort NOT the first option. As far as the city council, I do not know them, however, there is a budget in place that must be followed. I believe the public should have the opportunity to give their support to their animal shelter (I only offered suggestions as to how they might help)- it is THEIR shelter - unlike yours and other "rescues" which you can run as you see fit, even to the point of getting other people to do all your work. You had your opportunity to give your input to the budget process, but then you are not a citizen of Weatherford. "Rescues" should ALWAYS be the last resort and never the first option! You may call me any names you wish and if you cannot understand simple English, maybe you should consider going back to school. I never asked for your help! Your track record has proven your worth to the shelter - zero!

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#8 Jan 3, 2013
aminal person wrote:
For MaryRoseSmith,
I as concern person cannot understand your post above. You are a total "numcomepoop".
1st you put down some sources of help for the Weatherford Parker County Animal Shelter, the pure breed rescureers. Now you ask for thr public help for supplies.
Are you so enthualld with our city council that seems to be unable to fund the shelter properly.
Why do you want to turn away help when it is offered?
Your poster (below) to your facebook page would like people to believe that the average citizen is not intelligent enough to adopt a pure bred dog, that only "rescues" are capable of finding the dog a suitable home. You would like Joe Public to adopt only the large mix-breeds, after all how can Joe Public possibly know how to care for anything but a mix-breed. An insufferable and arrogant attitude that permeates all of your facebook pages.

"Bethany Watkins April, rescues often have better networking, a better understanding of that breed, its temperament, grooming needs, can screen prospective new homes better, etc. Purebred rescues should be taking the dogs of their breed! Even though the majority of dogs turned in arent purebreds, moving the purebreds out will leave more room for the rest"
Happy 2013 WCCouncil

Weatherford, TX

#9 Jan 3, 2013
Can't seem to stop bashing others. Why not get off your computer and go help. Stop bad mouthing everyone else. You are lazy

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#10 Jan 4, 2013
Bashing others? Some posts are worth re-reading to truly understand what the "animal people" are about (rumors & hate):

Painthorsegal wrote:
Several healthy adoptable dogs were
destroyed last week at the Weathetgord Pound.
The dogs are not being networked like other more modern shelters.
Volunteers are made to feel unwelcome or selfconcious being there.
What is it going to take to see any change?
The City Manager is digging in and has stopped any real progress.
None of us understand his deep interest
in a dog pound and all the fighting because citizens are wanting to help the animals.
What's the deal. Something's not right

Fun Fun Fun
Dallas, TX

The city manager has a VERY PERSONAL INTEREST in who has been in charge of the shelter. He will be intent upon protected her and anything that is connected to her tenure there. IT has been very obvious and a fact well known to the entire rank and file employees of the city for years. He is a man who it is a very bad idea to cross. Nothing is going to really change with that shelter. A lot of shuffleing and surface movement will take place to try and make it appear changed. That is all that will happen and the whole thing will just go away. Standard SOP in our city with the current group in control.

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#11 Jan 4, 2013
Bashing others? Some posts are worth re-reading to truly understand what the "animal people" are about (rumors & hate):

Painthorsegal
United States

When healthy adoptable animals are killed
for space then someone is sitting around
instead of actively trying to network and
place as many as possible.
It all comes down to old way of thinking
or the new nokill way.
If the shelter manager would be on board for
no kill things would change.

Sally Pool

How sad and totally wrong.
Jerry Blaisdell is the one
responsible and should have
been fired when the news of all
the puppies being killed last
December.
Clean house at the Weatherford Dog Pound.

Thursday at 4:23pm near Weatherford

Help Weatherford Shelter Pets The last excuse they used for the dead puppies was that they got a bad inspection report. Sharon Hayes even went on record in the Democrat and pushed the lie to the public. I have those inspection reports. Nothing there indicates overcrowding or filthy conditions. ALL LIES. They passed inspection. The three things they got wrong was bedding storage and food storage and one of the staff did not have a certification they should have. Anyone can get a copy of the inspection report. Don't take my word for it...order your own free copy from the state. I forwarded a copy to EVERY SINGLE CITY COUNCIL MEMBER. No one responded. They have proof their City Manager is lying to them and the taxpayers and they couldn't care any less.

Thursday at 4:35pm

Sally Pool They are liars and insult out intelligence. They are killing animals in Weatherford because of
old out dated thinking. Another and sickening factor is Jerry Blaisdell is a bully and wants his way instead of
doing the right thing for the community. All this killing makes me sick.

Thursday at 5:29pm via mobile

Marcy Thrasher Blakely Call fox 4 news !!

Help Weatherford Shelter Pets Hahah they will just do what they always do.... Show the shelter staff holding puppies and lie......- Michelle

Marcy Thrasher Blakely Well all I know is that if someone has that much info. On the case , and u don't give up contact the News and the truth will be revealed , if it hasn't in the passed just maybe it will this time r the next time , but if you do nothing it dang sure won't b anything ever b do e to help the puppies you say you care so much for ......just saying

Sally Pool This City in my opinion is so corrupt
It's hard to know where to start.
They all cover up for each other.
The City Manager is way to involved with the Weatherford Pound.
That place is like a cancer. It kills everything and everyone it comes in contact with.

Michelle Kays-Witkowski Marcy we have. The news has been out there. They gave it 2 minutes and the city lied. Then when they lost the rottie they took from someone's yard, the news came out. They lied some more. We attended every meeting of the city council for months. They figured we will not go away so they made up a new rule that they wouldn't have to listen to public comments. That made some people mad so HEIDI WILDER came up with a great idea.....they will allow comments by taxpayers, but only after you tell them what you want to talk about. That way if it has anything to do with the shelter they say no......soooooo if you have any contacts in the media that are willing to come out here AGAIN.....please send them our way. But don

Lindsay Bryan They're all a bunch of LIARS, and LOSERS...definitely BULLIES. I've really had my eyes opened by them over the past year I've lived in Weatherford...I can honestly say that I have met and dealt with some of the WORST people I have EVER met while living here...and I've lived in a lot of places. The city government is IMO full of a bunch of arrogant assholes who are on a power trip...ugh. We must keep trucking on, without us-they all die.

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#12 Jan 6, 2013
Remember this? They have many, many times accused the city of lying and the shelter employees of stealing money, supplies, and food. They have accused the employees of even more horrible "crimes" and never, never have they offered up any proof of their allegations. Everyone should remember that all is not what it seems regarding the local "rescues".

Because of their irresponsible, thoughtless and reckless behavior they are directly responsible for a kind, caring shelter employee to be fired from his job:

"Help Weatherford Shelter Pets shared a link.

February 14, 2012.

One way change can be brought about at this shelter is through the Animal Shelter Advisory Committee. This group meets next on March 1. This group is appointed by City Council. We need to ask City Council replace these board members with new blood who will work hard with City Council for shelter reform.

I would recommend that Dr. Kaiser, who knows first hand the issues within the shelter be nominated for the Vet position.

I would like to recommend that Butch Cappel be nominated for the Animal Welfare position if Barb Pursely, President of Parker Paws will not return.

The only shelter staff I would currently consider recommending is Shawn, as he seems to be compassionate and willing to help get the animals rescued.

Mr. Bates needs replaced with a city official who sincerely cares about the current condition and issues at hand. Perhaps Council member Heidi Wilder would be an asset to this board, or Damiele Felts who is a city employee. I honestly do not know who, but the old board members need to all go.

I further recommend that at least one county citizen be added because of this being a county joint shelter. Several citizens would qualify and be interested in this.

The current citizen on board, Judy Webster, seems to think they have no issues at this shelter. She clearly needs to be replaced. Again, it's time for movers and shakers to get in their and roll up their sleeves.

Please email City Council today and ask for change at this level before their first quarterly meeting on March 1, 2012."

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#13 Jan 6, 2013
The persons most responsible for the rumors and the so called "problems" at the shelter have never taken responsibility for their disreputable actions:

"Help Weatherford Shelter Pets

February 11, 2012.

Barbara Pursley, President of Parker Paws writes:
With all due respect to Mr. Blaisdell, his statement that overcrowding is subjective, the placement of the puppies in these kennels (and we're only referring to two kennels of young puppies) was under the direction of a licensed veterinarian, hired by the City with what I had assumed was the intention to provide more knowledgeable care and oversight of the health and welfare of the shelter pets. He "asked every staff member"? Why not ask the vet?"

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#14 Jan 7, 2013
OH LOOK, they are trying to make people think these are two seperate enities!

"Parker County Pets Alive Please "like" our facebook page too! We are offering FREE Fostering 101 classes and would love your viewers to check us out!

January 3 at 6:50am

Help Weatherford Shelter Pets Will do! Tell your fosters "thanks" from us! Fosters save pets from our shelter!

January 3 at 6:51am"

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#15 Jan 7, 2013
Good rescues gone bad?
Pets
May 20, 2009
By: Sara Enos
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Boo, adopted with help from 2 repuatble Charlotte rescues

There are heavy allegations surrounding a couple of “rescue groups” that have animal lovers and fellow rescuers in an uproar.

What really happens when you take a dog or puppy to a shelter or rescue facility? In most cases, the dog is vaccinated, spayed/neutered, micro-chipped, and well cared for while an application process begins to help find a loving forever home. People understandably often assume that the label “rescue” automatically guarantees the employees, owners, and volunteers are good-hearted and will do what is best in interest of the dog. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, as seen very recently in two separate cases.

Over the past several years, many complaints have stemmed from interactions with a rescue operating in Canton, Georgia by the name of Pit Prints, run by owner Amanda Conrad. These accusations from a number of reputable rescue groups only scratch the surface:
•Taking donations for dogs to re-home them, then dropping them for euthanasia at the Cherokee County Animal Control facility
•Listing dogs on her web site and soliciting money for their care,(without them ever being in her care)
•Not spaying and neutering her own two Pit bulls who have had two litters “by accident” and selling the puppies
•Listing and selling donated items on Craig’s List that are typically in high demand with rescue groups,(as well as various small animals)

Conrad has been said to say that she only takes aggressive dogs to be euthanized, however many have pointed a heavy finger at her for adopting out a human-aggressive Neapolitan Mastiff that attacked a woman and left her hospitalized. There was also surprise when certain dogs dropped by Conrad at Animal Control had microchips. When the previous owners were notified, they had a similar story; they brought the dog to Pit Prints and gave a donation,(some as much as $400.00) in return for Conrad to find a safe, permanent home for the dog.

It has been noted that members/volunteers of the following well-known organizations have all had bad relations with Pit Prints: Bama Bully Rescue, Jr. Humane Society, Pit Bull Rescue Central, K9 Rescue League, US Animal Protection, Fulton County Animal Control, and S.P.O.T.. The speculations from so many different people seem to be adding up to more than just a coincidence or a personal vendetta.

Now similarly to the accusations against Conrad, another Pit Bull rescue by the name of Southside Bulldoggin’ in Nashville, TN is under fire for having 261 dogs turned over for euthanasia at Metro Animal Control since 2006. Like Conrad, the owner’s brother stated that only aggressive or unadoptable dogs were turned over, yet the number, 261, remains to be a giant warning flag in the eyes of the rescue community. The group takes in donations for each dog it accepts.

Owner Casey Phelps is also under great criticism for having been charged with animal cruelty in 2006. Many are begging the question as to how she still operates a “rescue” with such charges.

Whatever the cases may be, when trying to help a dog in need, be sure to research the facility:
•Ask for veterinary references,(and call them)
•Ask other reputable rescue groups
•Ask about the application process,(do they require home visits, veterinary reference checks, spay/neuter, full vaccines, and microchips?)
•Visit the premises to see the living conditions of the animals

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#16 Jan 7, 2013
Dog victims of no-kill rescue gone bad are moved to new location

Columbus, OH - Dogs that found themselves dumped or otherwise discarded by their owners, wound up in various animal care facilities where either time ran out, or over-crowding dictated their demise.

When a no-kill rescue organization in Clark County "saved" the dogs from death row, it initially seemed to be a wonderful reprieve.

But that reprieve morphed into a fate worse than death as the "rescued" dogs found themselves existing for months on end in a filthy, over-crowded environment.

View slideshow: Dogs saved from no-kill rescue

According to the ASPCA, 349 living dogs and 76 deceased dogs, were discovered when the One More Chance Rescue and Adoption "rescue" was raided earlier this month.

Just 2 days ago, those dogs were moved once again - but this time, there should be sufficient resources to manage the tremendous number of dogs.

The surviving dogs are now being temporarily housed at the Franklin County Fairgrounds in Columbus, OH.

According to Kyle Held, the ASPCA’s Midwest director of Field Investigations and Response.

“This is an example of a ‘no-kill’ situation that spiraled out of control,”

“The shelter operator intended to save animals at risk of euthanasia, but did not have the resources or capacity to provide adequately for these animals. Many of the dogs discovered on the property are in critical condition and in varying stages of illness; our immediate goal is to transfer them to a safe place where they will receive the care and treatment they so desperately need.”

Photos provided by the ASPCA show face after face of dogs that have known too much loneliness and despair. Dogs dumped at shelters, "saved" by a rescue, and then housed like livestock.

According to James Staley, the executive director of the Clark County Humane Society.


“The conditions these animals lived in were deplorable,”


“These dogs were forced to live in their own waste, alongside rats and other vermin. Add to that the stress of coping in a crowded and poorly ventilated environment, and you have animals whose overall health is severely compromised.”

Dogs that are now being moved again - their future uncertain. The photos show dogs that are often found on death row. Mixed breed dogs, black dogs, large breed dogs - dogs with disabilities...dogs perceived as "less than perfect" by so many.

Rescues with aspirations to save dogs from death row must take into account their own resources, as well as their ability to get those "saved" into a forever home. Housing dogs for months on end in deplorable conditions is not a solution to any problem.

If the public would like to support the Clark County Humane Society for the ongoing care of these rescued animals, please contact Security National Bank to donate funds, or drop off clean blankets and towels at the Second Harvest Food Bank, located at 701 East Columbia Street in Springfield, Ohio.

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#17 Jan 7, 2013
Otis: An Adoption Gone Wrong
Two days after returning to Brooklyn from his honeymoon, just before returning to work for the first time in three weeks, Justin nuzzled Otis, a dog he and his wife Danielle had adopted from Tails of Love, an animal adoption agency on Staten Island. Otis, a Westie with stuffed animal good looks, had spent his first 4 years as a puppy mill stud. Justin petted and roughed the hair between his ears, then leaned in to kiss him good-bye. Otis did as dogs sometimes do. He snarled, and before Justin could duck, Otis’s teeth were at his face, tearing into his nose.
Danielle was in the kitchen cleaning up Otis’s pee and poop (he was still untrained), heard Justin scream and saw him run for the bathroom clutching his face, blood dripping from his hands. She rushed him to the emergency room where he had the first of three surgeries. Otis had bitten off part of his nose. Doctors would have to reconstruct his right nostril and septum.
Danielle DiGiacomo, 34, a documentary film producer and Justin Young, 39, a musician and appliance repair technician, met on OKCupid and corresponded for a few months before finally meeting. On her way back to New York from the Sundance Film Festival last January, Danielle flew directly to Florida to meet Justin — and that weekend they fell in love. Within months Justin had moved up to Brooklyn and on October 16th, they were married at the Queens County Farm Museum. Danielle wearing a white gown and 1940s hat and semi-veil, Justin in a suit and bowler, wed on a grassy field surrounded by family and friends, cabbages and broccoli. They danced to music played by Justin’s band. Justin crooned a song he wrote about falling in love with Danielle:
Were we out of our heads, out of our minds,
Un-stuck in this moment in time
Now it’s 6 days later and 16 bottles of red red wine
Let’s talk away the night, order take-out or just make out until the break of light
I know a golden temple that I want you to see
let’s hop the nearest Ferris Wheel, tequila shots times 3
I want to write you a song that will make you fall for me
or maybe i’ll just sing you The ballad of Otis and Jolene….
Otis
While they were on their honeymoon, Otis stayed in Princeton at the home of Danielle’s mom and dad. Danielle’s mother, a good friend who emails me almost daily, wrote,“Otis is adorable. He is afraid of everything, especially loud noise. He seems very happy at our quiet house, has made himself at home. Poor little guy, he’s had a rough life. He is very easy to take care of, except that he pees in the house sometimes, especially when he is upset.”
With Justin in the hospital and Danielle by his side, Deborah, Danielle’s mother, called the woman who had fostered Otis – in order to return him. The woman asked why Justin would lean in to kiss a rescue dog, and admonished,“he should have known better.” She suggested Otis would be fine and was reluctant to take him back.
Deborah emailed me:“We were told that he had been in a puppy mill, but we were never told Otis could be violent. In fact, he was advertised as being kid-friendly. Imagine if this had happened to a child!”
The ad for Otis sponsored by Tails of Love through Petfinders.com read:
“Little Otis was used as a stud in a puppy mill. He is a purebred West Highland Terrier (Westie). Otis wants nothing more than a comfy place to sleep, a good meal, and love. He was shy at first but is adjusting well to his new life of freedom, walks, and affection. Otis is a lower energy dog who would do well in apartment living. He is an absolute doll with a sweet personality – he holds no grudges even though he has been through hell. He gets along with dogs, kids, and ignores cats. Otis is up to date on shots and will be neutered prior to adoption.”

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#18 Jan 7, 2013
Otis: An Adoption Gone Wrong
Two days after returning to Brooklyn from his honeymoon, just before returning to work for the first time in three weeks, Justin nuzzled Otis, a dog he and his wife Danielle had adopted from Tails of Love, an animal adoption agency on Staten Island. Otis, a Westie with stuffed animal good looks, had spent his first 4 years as a puppy mill stud. Justin petted and roughed the hair between his ears, then leaned in to kiss him good-bye. Otis did as dogs sometimes do. He snarled, and before Justin could duck, Otis’s teeth were at his face, tearing into his nose.
Danielle was in the kitchen cleaning up Otis’s pee and poop (he was still untrained), heard Justin scream and saw him run for the bathroom clutching his face, blood dripping from his hands. She rushed him to the emergency room where he had the first of three surgeries. Otis had bitten off part of his nose. Doctors would have to reconstruct his right nostril and septum.
Danielle DiGiacomo, 34, a documentary film producer and Justin Young, 39, a musician and appliance repair technician, met on OKCupid and corresponded for a few months before finally meeting. On her way back to New York from the Sundance Film Festival last January, Danielle flew directly to Florida to meet Justin — and that weekend they fell in love. Within months Justin had moved up to Brooklyn and on October 16th, they were married at the Queens County Farm Museum. Danielle wearing a white gown and 1940s hat and semi-veil, Justin in a suit and bowler, wed on a grassy field surrounded by family and friends, cabbages and broccoli. They danced to music played by Justin’s band. Justin crooned a song he wrote about falling in love with Danielle:
Were we out of our heads, out of our minds,
Un-stuck in this moment in time
Now it’s 6 days later and 16 bottles of red red wine
Let’s talk away the night, order take-out or just make out until the break of light
I know a golden temple that I want you to see
let’s hop the nearest Ferris Wheel, tequila shots times 3
I want to write you a song that will make you fall for me
or maybe i’ll just sing you The ballad of Otis and Jolene….
Otis
While they were on their honeymoon, Otis stayed in Princeton at the home of Danielle’s mom and dad. Danielle’s mother, a good friend who emails me almost daily, wrote,“Otis is adorable. He is afraid of everything, especially loud noise. He seems very happy at our quiet house, has made himself at home. Poor little guy, he’s had a rough life. He is very easy to take care of, except that he pees in the house sometimes, especially when he is upset.”
With Justin in the hospital and Danielle by his side, Deborah, Danielle’s mother, called the woman who had fostered Otis – in order to return him. The woman asked why Justin would lean in to kiss a rescue dog, and admonished,“he should have known better.” She suggested Otis would be fine and was reluctant to take him back.

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#19 Jan 7, 2013
Otis Cont'd -
Deborah emailed me:“We were told that he had been in a puppy mill, but we were never told Otis could be violent. In fact, he was advertised as being kid-friendly. Imagine if this had happened to a child!”
The ad for Otis sponsored by Tails of Love through Petfinders.com read:
“Little Otis was used as a stud in a puppy mill. He is a purebred West Highland Terrier (Westie). Otis wants nothing more than a comfy place to sleep, a good meal, and love. He was shy at first but is adjusting well to his new life of freedom, walks, and affection. Otis is a lower energy dog who would do well in apartment living. He is an absolute doll with a sweet personality – he holds no grudges even though he has been through hell. He gets along with dogs, kids, and ignores cats. Otis is up to date on shots and will be neutered prior to adoption.”
No one, especially those who have rescued dogs – wants to hear about or consider the dark side of dog adoption. In the last 10-20 years more shelters have become “no kill” shelters where the policy is to euthanize only animals too sick or too aggressive for adoption. Even PETA advocates euthanizing if it means keeping unadoptable animals at “no-kill” shelters from being “warehoused” in cages for years. According to their website,“No one despises the ugly reality of euthanizing animals more than the people who hold the syringe, but euthanasia is often the most compassionate and dignified way for unwanted animals to leave the world.”
On the other hand, the North Shore Animal Rescue League of Long Island claims on their website,“A rescued animal can stay at the Animal League as long as it takes to find a loving home. Most of the animals are prepared for adoption within three or four days. They are groomed, medically examined, behaviorally evaluated, vaccinated and spayed or neutered prior to adoption. On average, most of the dogs and cats at the Animal League find loving homes within a week.”

Since: Sep 12

Weatherford, TX

#20 Jan 7, 2013
Otis Cont'd -

According to Otis’s rescuer,“My usual process is to observe my rescue dogs and have them assessed by our behaviorist/trainer if we suspect any major issues. I only had Otis with me a couple of weeks and I did not see any issues with Otis when he arrived.” Otis was not assessed by professional behaviorists. The “usual process” was not followed. And Danielle and Justin were never given any instructions like “be careful, he could be violent, don’t kiss him, etc.” Danielle, with hindsight, says,“Maybe we were naive. I had kissed and nuzzled Otis’ nose many times, so it could have been me.”
Ironically, many animal adoption agencies screen the human adoptors more thoroughly than the animal adoptees. The questionnaires potential animal parents must fill out are often as arduous as applications to private schools: where do you work, where does your spouse work, do you have children, how old, how many hours will the dog be left alone, do you have a fenced yard, how will you exercise your dog, will you spay or neuter your dog, what happened to your prior dog(s), describe your lifestyle, what do you do in your spare time? How much money do you make? Provide two references, not relatives.
Jon and Abby of Bethlehem, CT, who wanted to adopt a dog found starving on the streets of Oklahoma City had to submit to two home inspections, had to fence in their yard and show proof of income and marital stability. And even after Holly was living with them and being loved by them, the agency threatened to come get Holly because Jon and Abby did freelance work and “might not be able to commit enough time to their dog.” Four years later, Holly is happy, and so are Jon and Abby who probably are able to spend more time with her because of the nature of their work.
Shouldn’t dogs be screened with the same rigor to see if they are fit to live in a human home? While many of our dog walking friends have been lucky and have adopted wonderful dogs, others are the 4th or 5th owner of a dog they, too, have had to give up. The dog scrapes the paint off the door every time there’s thunder and lightning. The dog can’t be trained. The dog bites someone. A dog that’s been abused feels threatened by everything – even love.
For six nights, Danielle slept next to her new husband in his narrow hospital bed. Friends and family brought them food. Last Tuesday, Justin had his second operation in five days.
The doctor had to graft skin from his forehead to his nostril in what’s called a “forehead flap procedure.” Hours of surgery. Hundreds of stitches. Danielle says,“There is a big sausage of living flesh attached from his forehead to his nose like a leash. So along with the pain, there is the discomfort and freakiness of having that there, and it is dangerous for him to go outside and be around people, especially in New York, because if he gets bumped into, everything could go wrong.”
Danielle has to unbandage and rebandage this piece of flesh every day at 2 pm (every 24 hours) so it doesn’t get too dried out. She is essentially his nurse for the next three weeks, and doesn’t feel comfortable leaving him, which cuts into the time she has for her own work.
In three weeks, Justin will have a third operation. They’re angry they fell into the trap of believing they could train an uncivilized dog. They’re angry at the adoption agency for being so irresponsible, for not properly screening the dog and for not warning them of the danger they faced. They’re not sure how they’ll pay Justin’s medical bills.
He has no health insurance. And now, no income.
This is not how they imagined the beginning of their life together.

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