One Step Forward….

Houston, TX – I recently wrote a blog regarding Bella, a dog that the Houston “Humane” Society claimed should be killed because of the way she looked i.e. she had white fur on her neck so she must be a Pit Bull (click here to read the blog).  

Bella-HM

Bella, in her new home

While posting the blog on Facebook, I wrote that 3 “shelters” within Houston’s city limits refused to adopt dogs that someone claimed was a Pit Bull or Pit mix* meaning all of those dogs were automatically killed if a rescue group could not pull them to safety i.e. Houston SPCA, Houston “Humane” Society and Harris County Animal Control.  

But, that list has recently changed.  Harris County Animal Control confirmed that there Harris County Commissioners voted to end the breed discrimination at that facility meaning they now adopt out “Pit Bull” type dogs, along with other friendly dogs. 

This is good news!    

Yes, Harris County AC still appears to be a high kill facility, but at least all dogs will now get a shot at adoption.  And in fact, someone commented on my Facebook page that she had just adopted a dog from Harris County AC that had been labeled a Pit Bull.

So, this is one step forward for Harris County Animal Control and for Pit Bull type dogs entering that facility. 

Now both Houston’s city pound and Harris County’s pound adopt out Pit Bull type dogs, but tragically two of Houston’s Limited Admission “shelters” i.e Houston SPCA and Houston Humane Society remain in the dark ages of “catch and kill sheltering” still refuse to adopt out any dog that one of their employees claims is a Pit Bull or mix, meaning those dogs are killed . **

Riley

Riley, a dog that the Houston SPCA said is a Pit Bull mix and should be killed

I congratulate the 2 pounds for being more progressive than the Houston SPCA and Houston “Humane” Society on this issue.  

I also ask people to consider which practices better represent your values as an animal lover.  We should support only the facilities which represent our values, and continue to demand only the best practices known when it comes to sheltering our homeless pets.

Petie

Petie, the “Pit Bull” with The Little Rascals

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*”‘Pit Bull’ is not a breed of dog.  It is, according to a leading advocacy organization, “a catch-all term used to describe a continually expanding incoherent group of dogs, including pure-bred dogs and mixed-breed dogs. A ‘Pit Bull’ is any dog an animal control officer, shelter worker, dog trainer, politician, dog owner, police officer, newspaper reporter or anyone else says is a ‘Pit Bull.’”

** Studies show that shelter workers mis-identify dog breeds up to 87% of the time. 

 

 

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Houston SPCA killed Tanner even though his original rescue group begged to save him

Houston, TX – The senseless and monstrous “policies” of some kill shelters never cease to amaze and shock  me.   The below story, which I’ve posted word for word, was recently posted on Facebook (here) by a rescue group.   Unfortunately, I’ve heard stories just like this before.   A friend called me last year with an almost identical story, and other people have posted similar stories online.   

Tanner

“We were contacted by the Houston SPCA on February 6th. They had a cat that was brought in microchipped to All God’s Creatures.  We microchip our animals for this very reason in case they do end up at a shelter or lost.

I was ready to go pick him up, but was told there was a 6 day stray hold by Candice (manager) at the SPCA.  Plus, she wanted the name of the adopter so she could contact her if she wanted him back or not. Not realizing how the SPCA Houston works, I gave them Tanners adopters name and phone number.

The following week (Feb 8-12th) I called numerous times to find out the status. Finally, getting a return call from Candice, she said that she had not been able to reach the adopter but wanted to continue to try being that she was off on Friday 12th.

Monday comes and I start calling the SPCA, again. This time, I get a return call from Keisha Shaw (2/17), another manager at the Houston SPCA.  She leaves a voice message stating that the adopter has been contacted and has come to pick up Tanner. I was thrilled (or so I thought).

February 22nd, I call the adopter to see how Tanner was doing, now that he was back home. SHE SAID HE WAS AT THE SPCA.

I was livid, now! Still having the [voicemail] on my phone from Keisha Shaw saying he was picked up by the adopter, I wanted to know what was going on. According to Candice, the case about Tanner was between the SPCA and the OWNER (adopter) not me. The owner did not want Tanner back because they had told her that he had become sick. I said then, that I would come pick him up. Candice stated that I needed to talk to Keisha Shaw, whom conveniently was not there that day.

The next day when speaking to Keisha Shaw, she said it’s not All God’s Creatures cat.  I questioned about why she said that he was picked up by the adopter. Her comment was she only said that the owned had been contacted. I guess she had forgotten that she had left that message on my phone.

All this being said, I can presume that he is no longer alive, but the SPCA Houston will not tell us anything because he is not “our cat,” according to them.  If only the SPCA did what all the other shelters (Baytown Animal Control, CAPS, LA Humane Society, Woodville Animal Shelter, etc.) do when they come across an animal microchipped to a rescue. They should have released him to us and let us contact the adopter. Tanner might still be with us and not have gotten sick being at the SPCA so long. Unfortunately, we will never know, thanks to the Houston SPCA.”

Because the Houston SPCA lies about their Save Rates, many people believe that it is a No Kill facility.  But the fact is that the Houston SPCA is a high kill facility.  The last time that they were honest with the public, their KILL RATE was 65%.  Former employees have told me that they believe their current Kill Rate is around 85%!   This is despite the fact that they had $36 MILLION is assets in 2014 and they are a Limited Admission facility–meaning they can say no to intakes when they get full.  

Considering how many pets the Houston SPCA kills, logic would dictate that such a facility would BEG rescue groups to take animals from them so that they do not “have” to kill them.   

But, logic goes out the window when dealing with slaughterhouses like the Houston SPCA.

As this story, and other stories show, the Houston SPCA actually refuses to return a lost cat back to the rescue group that originally adopted him out even though the rescue group’s contact information is listed on the cat’s microchip!   

The Houston SPCA would literally rather kill Tanner than return him to the rescue group who repeatedly called and begged to get Tanner back to safety.   

And the Houston SPCA is so insistent on killing a wanted pet that their employees even LIE.   Keisha Shaw, a manager at the Houston SPCA, left a voice mail message for All God’s Creatures (AGC) that Tanner’s adopter had picked up Tanner.    But when AGC called the adopter to check on Tanner, Tanner’s adopter said that she did NOT retrieve Tanner from the Houston SPCA.  

When AGC called the Houston SPCA to ask why they had lied about Tanner being picked up, Keisha Shaw lied again and said she never said the adopter picked up Tanner.   But AGC still had Ms. Shaw’s voicemail message proving otherwise.  

Click here to listen to Keisha Shaw’s voicemail.    Listen to Keisha Shaw lie and state two times that “the owner came in for the cat”.  

It is mind boggling to any rational person to wonder what purpose was served by lying to All God’s Creatures telling them that Tanner’s owner had picked him up from the Houston SPCA.   The Houston SPCA is a HIGH KILL facility, yet it seems that they lied for sole purpose of keeping Tanner so that they could kill him rather than return him to the rescue group who originally adopted him out, and who begged to get him back.  

In my opinion, only MONSTERS would do such horrific act.  In no way, shape or form is this a “shelter”. 

As a foster mom, and as a human being with a conscience, my heart breaks for All God’s Creatures knowing that one of their own was callously and needlessly killed by the Houston SPCA while AGC begged to get him back. 

Tanner’s death was entirely avoidable. 

AGC’s director wrote “I have shed many tears since this past Monday when I spoke to the adopter and found out that Tanner was not with her.  Tears of sadness for Tanner and tears because I was so angry with the SPCA.”

Tanner

If you donate to the Houston SPCA, THIS is exactly what your donations pay for.  

Learn the truth about this slaughterhouse and pass it on to your animal loving friends and family.    More stories about this house of horrors are posted on No Kill Houston’s website here.     

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Will you support No Kill efforts?

KittensatBARC

Houston, TX – No Kill Houston is an advocacy group who is working to transform Houston to a No Kill community. This is no easy task since Houston has the distinction of having 5 kill shelters that are killing approximately 80,000 shelter pets each year.   There are now approximately 500 cities and town who have become No Kill communities, meaning their Open Admission pounds and shelters are saving 90% to 99% of all animals entering their doors.   No Kill Houston wants this for Houston.  We know that it is possible, but we need the support and advocacy of Houston animal lovers to move the No Kill goal forward in Houston.

Since Houston is a huge city of over 1 million people and is spread out over 600 square miles, it is extremely tough to try to reach all Houstonians to educate them regarding what is going on in Houston “shelters” and also educate them on how Houston can end the killing of shelter pets.

2015 is an election year for mayor and city council positions, so it is a critical time to raise awareness about how the right LEADERSHIP in Houston could make all the difference in the lives of Houston shelters pets. If we animal lovers band together, I have no doubt that we can swing the elections, and elect people who will actually work to transform Houston to a No Kill city. 

No Kill Houston is currently running photo contest/fund raiser which will allow them to do more “advertising” in 2015 to reach more animal lovers.  The top 13 photos with the most votes will be featured on the cover and pages of No Kill Houston’s 2015 calendar.  Entering the contest is only a $5 donation and votes are a $1 each donation. If you want to make sure that your pet is shown in the calendar, you may also “Reserve a Day” meaning your pet’s picture will be shown on the day that you choose.   Donations are tax deductibleClick here to go to the contest web page.

If you do not want to enter the contest, but do want to make a donation to support No Kill efforts, you can do so by clicking here.  Please donate generously.

No Kill Houston is also allowing rescue groups and animal friendly businesses the opportunity to market their organizations on the pages of their calendar.   The sponsor’s name, logo, website address and/or any other requested information will be listed across the bottom of a calendar page below the winning monthly photo.   To sponsor one month in the calendar is only a donation of $125 for 501(c)(3)s or $225 for businesses. (Individuals may also sponsor a month at the non-profit rate).

If you are interested in this marketing/sponsorship opportunity, please email No Kill Houston at NoKillHouston@yahoo.com ASAP as the contest ends on January 1st at midnight.  Calendars will be shipped out in early January and sold at various events.

scam alert yellow sign - rectangle sign

BTW: If you are considering a donation to local or national animal related charity, I would strongly suggest that you do some research first.   I say this as someone who has, in the past, donated to, and volunteered for, local shelters thinking they were No Kill shelters, but found out later that they were actually high kill shelters.  Just because an organization may have the word “animal”, “humane”, “protection”, “ethical”, “prevention of cruelty” or “shelter” in their name does NOT mean that they are actually working to save animals.  There are a lot of frauds out there, and in the past, I have been duped by some of them as well.

Houston has five kill shelters/pounds.  Many people believe that the 3 limited admission “non-profit shelters” i.e Houston SPCA, Houston Humane Society and Citizens for Animals Protection (CAP) are No Kill.  They are NOT.  Far from it. The kill rates of these 3 facilities are as high or even higher than Houston’s high kill pound (BARC) or Harris county’s high kill pound.

I would never tell anyone to not adopt from these facilities.  Obviously, the animals there need out. Their lives depend on it.  However, be aware that if you send them money, that money could very well be used to buy the poisons they use to kill animals.

Perhaps do a Google search with the charity’s name & the word “kill”. You might be shocked at what you find.  Or, check No Kill Houston’s site.  There is a lot of information there about what these “shelters” are actually doing.

Or read this blog regarding CAP;

Or read this page about the Houston SPCA;

Or read this blog about the Houston Humane Society;

And or this page.

CarMagnet3

If you are considering donating to a national animal related charity such as HSUS, ASPCA or PETA, please do some research as well.  I have personally donated my hard earned dollars to PETA and ASPCA only to find out later that they fight against everything I believe in.  Not only that, they are kill shelters as well.  Also, although the HSUS claims to “rescue” various animals, they actually have no shelter.  And the HSUS has historically fought against No Kill efforts.  They have fought hard to kill some animals such as the victims rescued from Michael Vick’s house of horrors.  These organizations rake in millions of dollars in donations, but do little to nothing to actually help pets.

You can start your research about these national organizations here.

bulldog laughing at another dog dressed up with clown wig

In the meantime, have some fun and enter No Kill Houston’s photo contest.   Your companion may just become a 2015 calendar Pin Up!  Click here to enter and vote in the contest!

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The deadly PETA-Houston SPCA connection

Houston, TX – PETA has been getting a lot of criticism lately, especially in the last few weeks, as people become aware of PETA’s UNethical, inhumane, deceitful and reprehensible practice of killing the vast majority of the helpless animals that fall prey to PETA.   Nathan Winograd’s books and recent Huffington Post article have raised awareness to new levels.  This is a good thing.   People deserve to know the truth about the “non-profits” that they support.   Several years ago I too was fooled by PETA and used to donate to them monthly.   I am sickened to now know that my donations were probably used to kill adoptable animals instead of save them.

I have previously written about another high kill facility, the Houston SPCA.  The Houston SPCA’s KILL rate was 65% the last time that they were honest and released their records to the public, and they had an adoption rate of only 25%.  Current and former employees have said that they believe that the Houston’s SPCA’s KILL rate is currently as high as 80%!    The Houston SPCA killed over 20,500 in 2004 alone.   According to reports coming from the public and former employees and volunteers, I assume that they have killed as many animals or more each year since then.

Although PETA has killed “only” around 2,000 animals per in the last 11 years (29,426 dogs, cats, rabbits, and other domestic animals in the last 11 years), their KILL rate is consistently a shocking 90% or higher and has reached as high as 97%.  

PETA and the Houston SPCA have a lot in common:  

  • Both are multi-million dollar “non-profit” organizations;
  • Both are funded by good hearted people who have been fooled into believing that their donations are helping to save lives;
  • Both claim to “rescue” animals yet kill the vast majority that end up in their clutches;  
  • Both are nothing short of slaughterhouses.  

There is another deadly connection between PETA and the Houston SPCA.

PETA and the Houston SPCA have actually teamed up to carry out their better dead than fed style of “rescue”.

Below is an article I wrote on Examiner.com in February, 2011.  Since I have new subscribers on this blog who may not have seen it, I am re-printing it below.

Lemurs

February 2011 – As I have written previously, I am no fan of PeTA i.e. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.  Their fight against life saving No Kill efforts is both mindboggling and infuriating.  In the past, PeTA has even taken time out of their busy killing schedule to attack and oppose No Kill efforts in Houston.

As background, in 2008, Houstonians began demanding No Kill reform in Houston’s city funded shelter BARC.  We were astonished when PeTA, a self proclaimed “animal rights” organization, began attacking our efforts (click the link and scroll down to “No kill shelters are no good”) and attacked Nathan Winograd (see Winograd’s  response here.)

At that time, No Kill Houston was a new and small organization, so we reached out to the national “humane” organizations and asked for help in combating PeTA’s killing agenda in Houston.  The only national organization that responded to my requests for help, besides Nathan Winograd of the national No Kill Advocacy Center,  was Priscilla Feral, President of Friends of Animals and Primarily Primates sanctuary in San Antonio.

During one of our conversations, Priscilla told me a very disturbing story regarding PeTA and the Houston SPCA.   In light of the questionable raids of late and the Houston SPCA’s refusal to make a commitment to life saving, this story seems particularly pertinent.

On October 13, 2006, before Friends of Animals took over the Primarily Primates sanctuary, PeTA caused the Texas Attorney General to raid the sanctuary.  PeTa had collected allegations from a former disgruntled employee and a volunteer with a vendetta.  Both had made connections with PeTA and allowed them onto the sanctuary’s property.  They schemed to shoot videos to cast the sanctuary in the worst possible light and then turned it over to the Attorney General.

Granted, there were weakness at the sanctuary since the founder and director at that time was in trouble with alcohol.   But, PeTA’s goal was not to help the sanctuary or the animals. No, instead they wanted to dismantle the sanctuary. Once dismantled they could force the sale of the valuable land and they already had several buyers lined up, ready to cash in.

A judge in Austin appointed a receiver for the sanctuary that had been recommended by PeTA.   Before Priscilla could hire attorneys in Austin, that receiver was installed along with a large group of PeTA employees and volunteers.   Priscilla remembers that they were “a deplorable mess of incompetent people — directed by a receiver intent on shutting the sanctuary down to follow PeTA’s agenda.”

The receiver later admitted to the sending away, and to the deaths, of 336 sanctuary residents.   Two hundred of those animals had been rounded up and trucked 200 miles to the Houston SPCA during the first week that the receiver arrived.   This included dogs, guinea hens, Canadian geese, several ponies, a 27-year-old horse, chickens and more. “It was a stroke of evil.”

Friends of Animals wrote, faxed and telephoned the Houston SPCA to ask about the confiscated animals, but the Houston SPCA was not cooperative.  Feral says that “the Houston SPCA treated Friends of Animals as though we were criminals.”

Priscilla further laments “I am sure the Houston SPCA killed all of the confiscated animals as fast as possible.   It breaks my heart to think of the killing and how heartless they were. The horse… how could a horse grazing on the property be dispatched to the flipping Houston SPCA — a kill center that answers to no one.   And the chickens, free-roaming birds … every peacock they could catch.   What hope did they have?   Our several feral cats escaped these goons and so did male peacocks.”

In late April 2007, the Texas Attorney General dismissed all allegations against the sanctuary and asked Priscilla to head up the Board of Primarily Primates.  A settlement was fashioned much to PeTA’s chagrin.   But it was too late for the 336 victims of the PeTA/Houston SPCA “raid”.   Two hundred animals had been captured and taken away, never to be seen again. The Houston SPCA never responded to requests regarding their fate, so we have to assume that they are dead.  The other 136 animals disappeared – many of them dead as well.

PeTA had also “confiscated” primates which were then trucked from the sanctuary to exhibits and zoos.   Primarily Primates did get a few of the primates back, as well as a Longhorn steer in May 2007.   Some of the primates had been sent to two other sanctuaries in Texas and it was decided that it was in the primates’ best interest to leave them there. (More details on this story are at the bottom of this article).

For several years, it has puzzled me why animals that were seized in a San Antonio sanctuary were shipped 200 miles to the Houston SPCA, a high kill shelter.  San Antonio has shelters and so do many other cities much closer than Houston.  I never doubted this story, but the circumstances have always puzzled me.

I recently ran across some information that sheds more light on the situation and bonds the Houston SPCA and PeTA together more tightly.

It seems that Houston SPCA director, Patty Mercer and PeTa director, Ingrid Newkirk are both on the board of Ruby McKibben Foundation for the Protection of Animals.  (Also note that Houston Humane Society director, Sherry Ferguson [89% KILL rate], is also a board member.)

So, it would appear that Newkirk and Mercer have bonded and joined together to carry out raids which ultimately cause the deaths of many of the unlucky animals involved.  And why wouldn’t they be buddies?  After all, they both run high kill “shelters”.

In light of the questionable raids, and the ghastly outcomes for many of the animals, the PeTA – Houston SPCA connection is a very disturbing connection indeed.

You can read more about PeTA’s attacks on Primarily Primates here:

* Wallace Swett of Primarily Primates Denounces PETA’s Continuing Attacks on Primarily Primates 

* Cumulative cost of PETA-funded lawsuits against Primarily Primates may reach $1 million

* Will the animals at Primarily Primates survive PETA’s single-minded determination to destroy this sanctuary along with the lives of hundreds of abused animals who want only peace and refuge?

* PeTA: End your lawsuit against PRIMARILY PRIMATES!

* Help stop the assault on Primarily Primates

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