ARs “Adopt” out Biting+Dangerous–But WHY??

Originally posted in 2009, every bit still true today………..even the HSUS marginal dogs article (which HSUS has removed when they revamped their site due to allegations of too much lobbying–they had 4000 pages and turned it into a kindergarten site theme now, to appear to be doing “less” lobbying…)

Note that  some of this is from HSUS (see link below) AND they purposely chose these stories, assuming that they are real, and THESE specific dogs. Because the authors of the stories admit two things:

(1) That it was attempted to rehabilitate a biting dog which would have been placed for adoption –even though it had bitten the volunteers numerous times, and the director as well, yet if it had ‘not’ bitten the evaluator—but it DID……. [CA law allows rescues to do this without proof of rehabilitation]

(2) That the first author admits she was of the belief that “we could fix them all” in regard to rescued, re-homed and shelter dogs which have issues. The lab mix in the 2nd story attacked a cocker spaniel while being walked by pet sitter. These 2 stores are referenced below, in this post.

HSUS also talks about the dog in a shelter back East which had bitten before, yet it was adopted out and killed the new ownerAt least one of these dogs was listed on Petfinder, and that dog had purposely been turned INTO the shelter for the express purpose of having it euthanized.

Rather than killing it according to the owner’s request, they ADOPTED THE DOG OUTSubsequently, the dog KILLED the new owner and the estate sued the shelter and Petfinder. Petfinder than added a disclaimer on the bottom of each posting on Petfinder, which says that they do not vouch for the temperament of any dog and that they are only a listing portal for animals.   

 However, several of the dogs taken from the VICK case have proven to be good pets and are doing well as service animals and functioning like dogs, not fighters, according to bad rap.  Regardless of the breed type of dog, many extremist rescuers try to adopt out questionable dogs and they are of every size/type–and most are not pitbull types. 

Dog involved in Strangling Gets Second chance  <———–

[“involved” in strangling is a nice way of saying the dog killed the kid-but they rehomed the dog anyway]

February 3, 2006  (from SD Union Tribune)

RANCHO SANTA FE – One week after a golden retriever accidentally strangled a 6-year-old girl in a tug of war at her Long Island, N.Y., home, the dog has found a second chance and a temporary home here.  [Notice also–it says “accidentally” strangled. Had this been another breed type, it would have said purposely murdered in all likelihood]

DAN TREVAN / Union-Tribune
Charles Bratisax and Dr. Victoria Voith watched Jessy, a golden retriever who killed a 6-year-old in New York while playing with the girl’s scarf. The dog, now in Rancho Santa Fe, will be placed in foster care, then a home will be found.
Yesterday afternoon, just seven hours after a cross-country flight from a New York animal shelter to Helen Woodward Animal Center, the 18-month-old dog named Jessy went to live with her foster parent.
Jessy’s original family, the Hassards, had decided not to euthanize her after the tragic death of their daughter, Kaitlyn, on Jan. 24, but instead to put the dog up for adoption far away.
Jessy’s foster family, which already has a golden retriever, plans to keep her for two weeks before returning her to the animal center for medical and behavioral evaluations and ultimately for adoption.
“We decided to place her in a foster home so she can get the love she deserves,” Michael Arms, the center’s president, said.
Voith said Jessy may or may not need to be re-trained to keep her from tugging at things but the dog will not be given to a new adoptive family until all potentially problematic behaviors are corrected and Jessy is deemed safe.
                                                                Kaitlyn Hassard
Voith said Jessy’s future neighbors should not be afraid because she will be given to a family that will not let her get into trouble.                                                                         
“It all looks very good from what I’ve seen and heard so far. She’s better than most household pets,” she said. “Accidents happen. Helen Woodward Animal Center had received 110 telephone calls by yesterday afternoon from families that want to adopt Jessy, center spokeswoman Trisha St. George said. [Note:* Obviously, had this been another large 70lb dog that “accidentally killed” a kid, the AC would have immediately shot the dog. The kid might have died from being strangled, but the kid (who was 40lb) was dragged around the backyard by a 70lb dog until she was dead, and only then did the parent(s) discover her.]  
Here is an example of a Golden Retriever rescue, which fully admits what happened after taking a questionable dog which they believed was “rehabilitated” after months of evaluation and training by an experienced breeder, vet tech and obedience instructor:  ….

…”During the first year of YGRR’s operation, YGRR directors had the tragic experience of taking responsibility for a seven month-old Rescue Golden who severely injured a child, resulting in hundreds of facial stitches, facial paralysis and hospitalization. The dog, who had been given up because he growled when children approached his food dish and had “nipped” several times, was carefully evaluated for YGRR by a very experienced breeder, veterinary technician and obedience instructor. After two months of evaluation and training, the dog had shown no signs of aggression and we placed him in a home with no children. [Notice that the dog was not seen by a professional behaviorist]

His new owner continued obedience training with him and he was a star pupil. She called often to tell us of his progress. On the fateful day, he went with his owner to a family gathering. He spent the day surrounded by children and adults and enjoyed playing with everyone. That night, as he sat next to his owner at the dinner table, her nephew (a toddler of three) bumped against him. The Golden turned and viciously attacked the child. It took several adults to pull the dog off the child, but not before a great deal of damage had been done.

It is not likely that the owner of the rescued dog will be obtaining another re-homed dog after this, but could we blame them?  The same article also states….. “But we must also remember that our purpose is to assess the dogs. Aggression is very real, and we must be realistic in dealing with it. If we make excuses in an effort to save every dog, we must then take the responsibility for what happens when the aggression recurs, either to another dog, another person, or to the dog himself. I do not advocate the hasty euthanasia of any dog with a problem; it is a difficult and frequently agonizing decision every time we have to make it.” *emphasis added 

Or, see this one at                                                                                         

Word of warning: Rescued dog may be unpredictable  <——

Maybe it’s because the mantra of many individuals and organizations has changed from “Save the Dog” to  “Save the Dog Regardless.”       
Please understand that I applaud all the thousands of volunteers and shelters that work endlessly to help unfortunate canines.
But for the most part, shelters lack the staff and the training to identify behavior. And a lot of these poor dogs just go from home to home to home.
Perhaps that’s why children under the age of 12 receive more dog bites each year than any other age group, and huge numbers of these involve the family dog.
—-> Or see this advice given by a Sibe Rescue to “new” rescue people: “The SHCA Rescue Committee is not anxious to promote the current fear of dogs infecting this country by placing dogs with bad temperaments…  Bad-tempered and infirm old dogs are usually the most common causes for euthanasia.  Be sure that the people on your committee charged with evaluating the rescue dogs are capable of this judgement.  You cannot use up a place with a Siberian Husky who has a bad temperament and hope to someday change its personality while you allow others to die for lack of space.’

—>  Or see where NAIA examines both medical/behavioral issues seen in rescued animals.  “After the dog has bitten the kids and finally the old man, he will often strike back at the individual beating him. This combination of “dominant” and “fearful” aggression can be a dangerous combination for the new owners that might adopt the dog after its previous owners have finally taken him to the animal shelter.” [links to HSUS site from 2003-re “Marginal dogs”–update: H$U$ removed the article but we have it on here anyway….don’t worry, we subscribe to HSUS animal magazine just so we can report on their propaganda.]  “Marginal Dogs” huh?  But  HSUS is “telling” everyone to obtain a Shelter dog?

 ASPCA and the lot of AR groups want to get rid of the pet stores and rehomers, and private sellers , by claiming that giving away and selling are “illegal” and “abuse?”  Let’s be serious people. An H$U$ person wrote SB917 in California. Similar laws (but maybe not quite as bad) are already out there.  Does that make it RIGHT? Nope.

The Perils of Placing Marginal Dogs
By Trish McMillan


Rosie was a loving, beautiful dog with doting owners, but in the end, her predatory instinct made her too dangerous for habitation in human society. Her attack on another dog was the last straw for her owners, who vowed never to adopt from a shelter again.

Back in 1998 I had been volunteering with shelter dogs for a couple of years and was firmly convinced that there was a home for every dog out there … somewhere. With training, work, and love, we could fix them all!

A beautiful young pit/lab mix was returned to the shelter for growling at one of her new adopters. I asked my friend Mindy to take Rosie in for a few days, observe her, and see if this was something workable.

She and her husband John fell in love with Rosie and decided to adopt her. There was never any growling at people in this home, but it quickly became apparent that Rosie had no skills whatsoever around other animals. In fact, she was a little scary. No fear, they just wouldn’t let her around other animals. I got to spend time being really happy about “saving” another dog from those evil pound people who just wanted to kill her, and went about my merry way.

Fast forward to five years later. I’m in a different country and have learned a lot, been to many conferences, and worked with some of the best in the business. Over these years, judging by the sporadic contact I’ve had with them, my friends have put a lot of time and work into Miss Rosie. Hired trainers. Dog walkers. Tried various methods, from cookies to choking. Rosie was always a dream around the house but a nightmare when in prey-drive, and no one, myself included, had the ultimate answer for that one, aside from management.

We know management always fails at some point. Here’s the e-mail I got from John recently, shared with his permission:

“Hi Trish,

Hope all’s well with you and with your pooches.

I thought you might appreciate knowing that Rosie is no longer with us. Having been through this kind of thing with Chinook, I think maybe you’d understand.

It wasn’t the two skunks or the flying crow she nabbed out of the air or the tail she bit off that squirrel. It wasn’t even the three cats of the same house she killed in our yard, the second one she slew in full view of our neighbours—the cat’s owners—from their balcony.

The last straw was when our dog walker was walking Rosie on her leash about five weeks ago along Nanaimo Street. A little cocker spaniel stuck its head out from under the gate and yapped at Rosie. Big mistake.

With lightning speed Rosie had the little dog by the head and yanked it out under the gate, tearing the gate off its hinges. By the end of it the little dog survived (thank God) and I had Rosie at the Granville Island vet for a date with the blue juice. Mindy was in Ontario for her grandfather’s funeral, so the task lay on me to find a good vet who’d do the task. A lot of places simply won’t euthanize a physically healthy animal.

I found a young, very compassionate vet at Granville who heard my long story of Rosie and read my letter from the trainer, Scott. Dr. Clancy agreed to do it. He was very impressed with Rosie. She was obviously very healthy, well trained, loving. When the moment came I told her it was alright (what a big lie!) and she gave me that trusting look. The doctor pushed in the plunger.

Rosie stood up, slipped off the table into the arms of Dr. Clancy, and by the time he placed her back on the table she was gone. It was as if someone passed a hand over my face and when done, Rosie was gone and another dog was lying there. A damn good-looking one, I might add, but it wasn’t Rosie.

Anyhow, we offered to pay the owner of the cocker half of his $550 vet bill. But, he’s feeling victimized so he rejected our offer of half, and he’s suing us for the full vet bill and gate repairs to the tune of $785.

Anyhow, we’ve done our social responsibility with reject pound dogs so we hope to get a puppy in an upcoming litter of Hungarian Vizslas, which are a rust-coloured, short-haired pointing dog. Good-looking, friendly, predictable. Oh, yeah. And expensive.   [emphasis added since these people will never be interested in a pound dog again, it does not help the rescue effort to put dogs with problems in the community]

So, Trish, there you go. Such a sad tale. We loved that dog so much, but there was nothing we could do in the end to prevent this denouement. It’s a great relief actually, but it’s a little like losing a family member—well, nowhere near as bad, but sort of that way. I know you’ve been through this too.

John B.”

I might add that over these five years my views on placing marginal dogs have changed … a lot. I’ve come a lot more in line with Sue Sternberg’s philosophy that shelters should be where people come to get the best dogs, not to become expert trainers or to have their bank accounts drained.

Look what I managed to accomplish by “saving” that one dog. John and Mindy have told me that they will never adopt a “reject pound dog” again. Do you think their neighbors will? Their family? Their coworkers, who have heard the Rosie stories all these years?

How many shelter dogs will now die because I got greedy over one dog that I thought should be saved, in another city all those years ago?

One Viszla breeder is happy with me, that’s all I’m sure of.

I’m facing this dilemma again with my current foster pup, who is very people-shy and has immune problems, and I just found out he has severe hip dysplasia. He is not a danger to society in any way, but do I dare send him out to become someone else’s “project”? If I do, will he be an advertisement or a deterrent for people thinking of adopting shelter dogs?

It’s humbling work, this.

Trish McMillan is a dog trainer and shelter volunteer. Her essay first appeared as a posting to Shelter Trainers, a Yahoo message board, and is reprinted here with her permission. As for John and his family, although they love their socialized and friendly four-month-old puppy, they still miss Rosie and her endearing “confident sense of belonging in the family.”

This story directly above and below, is from HSUS, the animal sheltering site under Resource Library

Letting Go of Genie
By Nan Kené-Arthur

She was playful and bossy, with the kind of smiley face and thumping tail that melts the hearts of humans. But the San Diego Humane Society’s efforts to make her adoptable revealed that Genie’s dogged nature had a flip side: the potential to hurt people through her dominant play. Euthanasia was the only answer, but not before Genie had received more love than she’d ever known from her adoring posse of volunteers and trainers at the humane society.

Damn dog.

Genie always seemed so normal when she was in our office, happily munching on a rawhide (her favorite chew toy), usually acting like an adolescent puppy by getting into things. She was always giving cuddles to anyone who would care to cuddle with her, as long as she had exercised enough to get past the excitement of getting out of the kennel beforehand.

I so wanted her to be weird, to at least look aggressive, but Genie looked cute and happy despite my best efforts to wish her into some sort of demonic beast of a pit bull. It was obvious she didn’t know she was going to die in just a few hours, but couldn’t she just make us all feel better by confirming her fate with some kind of nasty display of violence? At least then, Genie’s euthanasia would be easier to accept.

No, she just looked up each time someone walked in the door, her tail thumping wildly on the floor as she continued to chew away at the rawhide. She got up every now and then to greet people as they came in offering her food. Hamburgers, a steak sandwich, cookies, Teddy Grahams, turkey, and French fries were all among the gifts. If dogs could have wishes, this would be the ultimate—a virtual river of junk food, all being hand-fed, sometimes mouth-to-mouth fed, and in a gluttonous amount by those who had loved her, had cared for her, had gone to the limits for her. It was Doggie Nirvana!

Genie didn’t understand she was getting her last meal; she just enjoyed the visits and looked at the door each time she heard footsteps coming up the stairs outside of our office. She almost looked disappointed when the footsteps echoed past the door and down the hall to a classroom where testing had been taking place all day. It was classical conditioning in its purest form—Pavlov’s effect taking place in our tiny behavior and training office: The door opening equaled great food for Genie! Irony has a way of forcing itself into lives at the most telling moments.

With that, I couldn’t help but think that I would love to have such attention if it were to be my last day on earth, and lucky Genie had gotten that much attention nearly every day of the five months she lived at the shelter, just without all the food. She had built up her own posse of volunteers and employees and they looked out for her, taking her on field trips, working with her on the training plans our department had devised to help curtail the use of her hard mouth, all the while hoping that someone would want to adopt her.

There was always a reason to keep working with her, keep trying to “fix” her. It’s what we do in the training and behavior department; we fix problem dogs, so we kept trying.

It was that enormous effort that brought up the questions that swam in my head and kept me from sleeping well that night: I wondered how this happened? Where did we go wrong? What did we miss? Could we have done something different? Should we have put some of this effort into other dogs who might have missed their chance because we were too entrenched with saving Genie?

It seemed as though we did everything, but Genie’s behavior problems were like a cancer that wasn’t detectable just yet, but the lesions were growing nevertheless. We tried it all: behavior modification, impulse control, Bach Flowers, obedience training, TTouch, diet, and love, oh, the love—but the cancer was increasing and spreading, and it was malignant and untreatable, despite our best efforts to stop it.

If we wanted an uncomplicated conclusion as to why Genie was to be put to sleep, it would have been easy to point toward the outrage of the public for Genie’s fate. It never fails whenever terrorist pit bulls splash across the headlines and into homes via the television, more pit bulls die in shelters all across the nation simply because they were born into pit bull skin. It would have been easy to explain the liability, the danger of putting yet another pit bull into the community, but that wouldn’t have been the truth. Genie was not really an overtly aggressive dog. She was bossy, and she had a low threshold for excitement, and with that, Genie used her teeth when she played, or when she wanted something, or if she didn’t like something, or if she just felt like biting for the sake of biting. Our ultimate decision had nothing to do with her being a pit bull. It was Genie herself, teetering on the edge of aggression, who tipped the scales.

Could we have done more to prevent the outcome of Genie’s destiny? The experts said no. One of her supporters paid for Genie to go to a UC Davis Veterinary Behavior program to see if we missed something—“She’s a dominant, confident dog that simply ‘chooses’ not to hurt any of us,” said the vet. But she had hurt us, not badly, not “newspaper headline: Pit Mauling” hurt, but a small puncture on my arm in rough play, and big bruises on my and other trainers’ hands, and more bruises on an upper arm of still another trainer, but there always seemed to be a way to excuse the bites—“she was too excited coming out of her kennel,” or “she was trying to get the ball.” There was always a reason to keep working with her, keep trying to “fix” her. It’s what we do in the training and behavior department; we fix problem dogs, so we kept trying.

We had to come out of our optimistic fog and into the excruciating sunlight when Genie bit our new animal care director, not just once, but twice, and also bit the veterinarian at the UC Davis program during the interview that was set up to try and save her life. Everyone who worked with Genie wanted to run back into the fog, but that hiding place fizzled like a drop of water on a hot sidewalk in August with those bites.

Friends and supporters of Genie began trailing into our tiny office to visit with her on that final day and they looked tired, painfully concerned, and blurry-eyed from crying. Resolving a dog’s death wasn’t easy, even with all the facts. There was talk about sending her to live at a sanctuary, about using drugs, about putting her in a foster home, about pulling her teeth out, but everyone knew Genie would die that day, everyone except Genie.

I wanted to be angry with Genie and her red and white pit bull skin that strained over tight muscles and finally rested at the opening of her smiling mouth. I wanted to blame her for the feel of strong jaws that had clamped down on my arms and my hands too many times. I wanted the guilt to go away with being angry with her. Genie just thumped her tail as I reached to take her leash. It was time.

I led her away from the others who loved her and realized Genie had known the most love she would ever know. There was a reason she never left the shelter, never was adopted or found a foster home; she was home, and no one else could have loved her like all of us did.

Damn dog.

A senior trainer at the San Diego Humane Society in California, Nan Arthur is also a professional writer and photographer

[Note from Pet Defense: You will notice that HSUS chose THIS story and says it was a pitbull. We did not choose the story, HSUS did, and it’s still there on the HSUS site from 2003, we believe.]

As stated above,  in at least two-three cases involving  shelter dogs, a dog was purposely adopted out where there was prior knowledge that the dog had bitten before or displayed either dangerous or vicious behavior. This has resulted in at least two criminal prosecutions of adoption agencies and their volunteers. It is possible that a criminal prosecution for homicide could be filed against either the agency, volunteers, or both.

We actually have first hand evidence of a dog via rescue [we used to do rescue for years] where the owner [who is now a vet] gave up the dog without disclosing its huge biting background. Huge meaning having bitten so many times you couldn’t count them. Having to use a halti type muzzle collar all the time. Having to put the dog in “jail” as part of its training. The dog was clearly insane and dangerous but since it was about 10lb, we were not as concerned as we would have been with a 50lb dog. That was before we figured out how insane the dog was…….. We do plan to put the actual documents on this site with much of it redacted, but it was so incredibly criminally negligent to give the dog away without disclosure, it boggles the mind. You get a taste of the animal rights– first hand.

When rescue groups have contracts that they retain the ownership of the dog even after it is placed in a new owner’s home, the rescue is setting itself up for liability issues.  Since there are no set standardized universally accepted shelter temperament tests for all shelters, it stands to reason that if an animal extremist tested an animal and allowed it to be placed, even if it was marginal, there could be a huge problem for that rescue or shelter down the road. [We were told by a person working in SF shelter,  that a decision maker was purposely releasing the marginal dogs, and killing the well tempered dogs.  Go figure. AR method. Also, be aware that even bad rap keeps a pitbull pup for over a year before they will place it, obviously fearing liability. OTOH bad rap tells people (owners) to have their vet kill their own dog rather than give it to a rescue. This is what happens when you take too many dogs from shelters or kill too many in shelters.. ]

Because there is generally no follow up or safety checks on dogs that fail temperament testing (but are taken by rescue and adopted out)—errors or even lapses in judgment by re-homing personnel can create huge problems for injured individuals down the line.

Remarkably, many people involved with rescue refuse to acknowledge that some re-homed dogs can be problems. Instead, many of them just shirk off growing evidence that a fair percentage of rescued dogs have behavioral issues that can’t be corrected.

They will ignore evidence that a disproportinate number of rescued or re-homed dogs have bitten. [One study of dogs that had ALL bitten  children, were composed of 93% (ninety three%)–and ALL of those dogs were  altered dogs.

We are not saying that a purchased dog is better than a rescued dog (as we own a rescued dog)—we are pointing out that the re-homing personnel, or individuals are not all realistically inclined and some will shirk off the distinct possibility of harm to other people, and think that every single dog should be placed or saved.  This is clearly not the case. 

—> YORK, Maine

York animal control officer Larry McAfee said the three or four cases this past winter in which he had to invoke the state’s dangerous animal law all involved rescue dogs.

Animal officers: Rescued dogs from South proving dangerous
Potential owners advised to do research

McAfee said he’s heard that people also bring dogs from other parts of the country, particularly the South, into New England and then find homes for them. These are not dogs that typically come from shelters.

Two incidents involving rescue dogs have occurred in York in the past month. On Friday, a couple was walking their 5-month-old black Labrador retriever puppy on Spar Hawk Way shortly before 3:30 p.m., when a rottweiler bounded from a yard and attacked the young dog, McAfee said.

It took both people some effort to get the dog to release the puppy, who received puncture wounds and bruises, he said. The rottweiler’s owner was summonsed under state law on a charge of keeping a dangerous dog as a result of an unprovoked attack and under York ordinance on a charge of failure to control a dog.

A month ago, an adult Labrador retriever from Kittery Point was loose on Long Sands Beach when it attacked five Yorkshire terriers and their owner, McAfee said, although no one was seriously injured. The Lab’s owner told McAfee that she was the dog’s fifth owner, and it had originally been rescued from the southern United States.

“They think they’re trying to do the right thing by giving these dogs homes,” said McAfee, “but they are taking on more than they bargained for.”

Exeter animal control officer Neal Jones, who sits on the board of the New England Animal Control and Humane Academy, is familiar with the problem.

“They’re what I call ‘Animal Planet’ people. They love animals. They’re concerned when they see these dogs on a show,” he said. “But then, miraculously, 15 minutes later, the dog is catching Frisbees in the back yard. What they don’t see is the two years of hard work and training it took to get the dog to that place.”

Jones said many dog owners simply are taking on way more than they bargained for.

“They take the dog out of compassion, but it’s an absolute handful, so they get frustrated and dump it in a shelter, and then this poor dog gets sent from one home to another,” he said.

Jones recalled one owner who asked for his advice about a rescue dog who “from a young age went through a lot of trauma. In those formative years, it didn’t have a very good life.”

The owner said the dog was exhibiting behavioral problems, although it had not acted out toward another dog or a human. Still, he said, she voluntarily had the dog euthanized because she knew it was “more than she could handle.”

Licensed shelters do have protocols to follow when dogs are brought to them, said Jerilee Zezula, associate professor of applied animal science at the University of New Hampshire.

Such dogs are given temperament tests, she said, to see how they will react under stress. Someone who is selling a dog online or out of a home will likely not have given a dog such a test.

“Ask if it’s had a temperament test, and if it hasn’t, beware,” she said.

She also said shelters screen their adopters “rather heavily, and some people are offended by that. They don’t think they should have to go through all that screening. That may be another reason why they go to sources other than a shelter,” she said. She said if people decide to get a dog from somewhere other than a reputable source, “they need to be prepared to deal with anything. Don’t have blinders on.”

McAfee said the repercussions are very serious if an owner has been cited under the state’s dangerous dog statute, which the York dog owner is facing. If the rottweiler, or any dog cited as dangerous, is involved in another incident, McAfee can get a court order to euthanize it.

“We try to give the benefit of the doubt, but we have a duty to protect the public, and if I find a dog that is that bad, I have a protocol I have to follow,” he said. In the case of the rottweiler, McAfee said the 47-year-old owner was very upset and very contrite. She realizes she’s in over her head, he said, and may euthanize the dog on her own.

Exeter’s Jones said people should think about the ramifications long before the dog comes into their lives.

“Unless you’re in it for the long haul and you’re willing to be trained along with the dog, don’t make the commitment,” he said.

Applied Animal Behavior Science, Temperament and Personality in Dogs, review +evaluation of past research:

An excellent article “Don’t buy a Bourvier” by Pam Green, well known for her knowledge of the breed

Deseret News (Salt Lake City),  Apr 29, 2004  by Matthew Margolis

 I guess I’m writing this column because a few days ago, I had a higher-than-usual number of calls from parents after their dogs had bitten or attacked their children. The reactions were not what I hoped for. One woman, after the dog bit the baby, said she couldn’t get rid of the dog because the canine was her first baby.

Another parent was surprised that the rescued dog had severely bitten her child’s hand. After all, she had rescued the dog. He should have been grateful.Notice anything?

People are humanizing their dogs. Dogs are becoming children’s siblings. They are treated like children, and when they respond like dogs, parents are flabbergasted. A lot of these incidents are with rescued dogs. What’s going on here?

Maybe it’s because the mantra of many individuals and organizations has changed from “Save the Dog” to “Save the Dog Regardless.” Please understand that I applaud all the thousands of volunteers and shelters that work endlessly to help unfortunate canines. But for the most part, shelters lack the staff and the training to identify behavior. And a lot of these poor dogs just go from home to home to home.

This writer has sized up the situation accurately.

And that was in 2004.

Folks, we call this: “ANIMAL EXTREMIST”

2 thoughts on “ARs “Adopt” out Biting+Dangerous–But WHY??

  1. No wonder the shelters are broke and crowded if they are spending this much time and money on individual dogs. It sounds like a contest to see who is the best ‘rescuer’ or something. Who cares the most. Sigh…

    As for Petfinder, of course they can’t be held liable for temperaments, etc, any more than a newspaper’s classified section can give a warranty on things or pets advertised.

  2. I think most of us would agree, the purpose of “rescuing” is to get out as many good animals as possible–however the AR movement has managed to use rescuing in other ways. If they have loads of $$, they will spend $5,000 on a cat, $10,000 on a dog. Ignore good animals and focus on ones that need 2 years of work, training,rehab. The CA law re the “animal capable of ‘reasonable’ rehabilitation must be given to a rescue” started when the Hayden law came into being. It was after that law started, that rescues started this trend of rescuing the worst dogs and trying to act like God or professional trainers–but w/o any qualifications. On the surface, the law or rule seems reasonable. The problem is that extremists are neither reasonable, nor are they God. By letting out marginal dogs, spending scads of time on bad dogs, and ignoring potential new dog owners completely, dogs which have no temperament issues are ignored and overlooked. In fact there was an article re a shelter where the director had to stop rescuers/staff from writing bad comments on the comment cards on the dog kennels, because they would do this for the dogs that didn’t have problems!! As we can see, this type of manipulation indicates a lack of honesty in an effort to steer the public to the wrong dogs. As ridiculous as it seems, and for as many years as I have seen it go on, after just viewing the outright hostility of the San Francisco Gang Flaggers, combined with their profanity online (see posting on this site where they exclaim to one another “PETA SAYS PET OWNERSHIP IS SLAVERY! FLAG THAT AD!!”)–and where they are actually willing to remove all the dog ads with normal people trying to get new homes for animals—I think it’s pretty obvious that they are steering people into hating their self-serving behavior, controlling efforts to NOT get shelter animals homes, and brainwashing other people to go along with it. By NOT getting shelter animals homes, and by NOT adopting out good animals, they accomplish 2 things. 1) Establish a NEED for their OWN agenda (MSN) and 2) Establish the groundwork for dismantling dog breeders/ownership. HSUS has already passed CA law that domestic violence convictions mean you can’t get custody of the household pet? They plan to link that law to taking pets from people even without domestic violence issues.

    HSUS is a very dangerous group and WP is a lobbyist. So sad that he uses that power in the wrong way. If possible, I would appreciate it if you could post on your site and encourage others to spread the word re what rescue worker extremists are doing? This is a VERY pervasive element in the war against dog ownership, and extremists know it. Hence their ability to mismanage the shelter management and to influence them improperly. Acting as if they really are trying to save as many as they can, while actually sabotaging those poor pets behind the big screen.

    As a primary example, a well known rescue gal in SF shelter found out that the temperament tester was releasing the marginal dogs and killing the good dogs. She told people and they banned her from the shelter. She got so fed up w/SF that she left the state. I think I just might contact her to do an expose on this nonsense. And wait until we get the final word on why the fact that 50%+ of the fatal attacks are by re-homed dogs was kept from the public, but that “tethering” is used as one of the elements contributing to attacks even though it only comes in as a 22-24% alleged factor???? Think about it. And thanks for any help in advance in helping get the word out. Need all the help we can get. Cheers!

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