Here’s a look inside the cavernous warehouse in St. Louis that has served as the emergency shelter for the hundreds of dogs seized in this summer’s massive five-state dog-fighting raid — the largest in U.S. history.
The Humane Society of Missouri, at one point, was sheltering more than 400 dogs, and 100 newly born puppies, at the emergency shelter, the first public access to which was granted last week to the Associated Press.
More than 120 of the seized pit bulls have been placed in foster homes, but about that many still remain in the temporary shelter. Another 160 dogs were put down because of injuries, illness or behavior.
“They are not a vicious animal. They are the victims of abuse,” said Debbie Hill, vice president of operations for the Humane Society of Missouri. “That face and their eyes tell the story. They only want to be in someone’s home, on a couch, or sleeping at someone’s feet, maybe chew up a rug or two for entertainment. They’re learning for the first time how to be a dog.”
Animal behaviorist Pamela Reid, who was part of the team that evaluated the dogs, said a surprising two-thirds tested well for nonaggression and adoptability. She’s fostering one puppy, although one of her favorite dogs had to be euthanized because he showed aggression toward men.
Posted by John Woestendiek November 17th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: abuse, aggression, aggressive, behavior, debbie hill, dog, dogfighting, dogs, emergency, euthanized, fighting, five-state, humane society, missour, neglect, pamela reid, pit bulls, pitbulls, put down, raid, rape stand, report, seized, shelter, st. louis, temporary, video, warehouse
Rising foreclosures and the sagging economy are making it more difficult for families to properly care for their pets, and this week JAKKS Pets and the Petco Foundation are doing something about it — offering free dog and cat food to struggling families and pet rescue groups in Detroit, Chicago and Greater Cleveland.
A free one-week supply of dog or cat food will be handed out to those who show up Saturday or Sunday at the Petco stores at Westgate Mall in Fairview Park or at 500 East Aurora Road in Macedonia.
“Pets have become innocent victims of the recession,” a company spokesman said, “and the number of animal intakes at shelters has risen dramatically.”
The move may not be purely altruistic. The company’s public-relations events follow a raid of its Illinois warehouse in June, when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and marshals confiscated pet food that had been stored in filthy conditions, according to the Cleveland Plain-Dealer.
The warehouse, which supplied Petco stores in Ohio and 15 other states, was infested with rodents and birds. There had been no reports of pet illness from consuming Petco food, but pet owners were told to wash their hands after handling the bags and plastic containers.