August 26, 2007

"Michael Vick, HSUS, and the ASPCA"

Dept. of Polemics: late Sunday I received a copy of an email [excerpts below] denouncing the HSUS role in the Vick investigation. The author of the email is from Virginia, and is active in rescue. I don't know her. I do know that the HSUS solicited funds for the care of Michael Vick's dogs and gave "several thousand dollars" to Surry County. I've commented before on the organization's mad PR skillz. This week we should learn more about the ASPCA's role in the investigation.

Did the U.S. Attorney's Office ask the HSUS to leave? Were HSUS publicity efforts jeopardizing the government's case against Vick? Newsworthy stuff, if these charges are substantiated, and I hope some keen reporter follows up on them.

From: Patti Stinson [e addy removed]
Sent: Sunday, August 26, 2007 3:04 PM
Subject: Michael Vick, HSUS, and the ASPCA

First, as you all know, the rescue I volunteer for has served as rescue support for the Vick effort. We have been standing by for when we are needed. We are primarily on call to rescue some non-pits involved in the case.

That said.....

You all likely know that HSUS was asked to step in and help handle the pitbull situation since they are a large national organization with a lot of money, a lot of support, and a high profile. What you don't know is that they were asked to leave the effort (by the US Attorneys office) because they couldn't resist putting out press releases that could possibly jeopardize the case against Vick[... ]

They were soliciting donations for the care of the pitbulls. They never provided any care. Further, if they had expended any funds, I believe that they would have been reimbursed by the Feds [...]

On the flip side, how much did you hear from the ASPCA? Little to nothing, right? Right. They were involved in a major way in the investigation (on a much larger scale than HSUS) but had the common sense, professionalism, and ethics to keep their mouths shut in order to do the best they could for the dogs.

It's obvious where priorities are for both groups. ASPCA puts the animals first. Publicity and solicitations for money come second.

HSUS wants to grab all the credit they can - even when they don't do anything.

Who are you going to support financially?

My money is going to the ASPCA.

Patti Stinson
Founder (inactive), 4 Paws Rescue Team


Anonymous said...

yeah, but ASPCA advocates for killing dogs seized from dogfighters too.. they're just not as vocally hysterical as HSUS is...

They have a pretty reasonable non hysterical page on dogfighting:

but the section on rescuing fighting dogs is the same-old, same-old:

Q. What happens to dogs that are seized from dog fight operations? Can they be rehabilitated?

Fighting dogs have been bred and trained to inflict injuries on other animals, and are difficult to house and care for. They are often relatively friendly to people, primarily adult males, since such people have been the only source of food and attention—but they can be unpredictable around people and any other animals. Concerns about liability, public safety and other risks mean that most animals seized from such operations are not adoptable, meaning they cannot be considered candidates for successful placement, and often have to be euthanized.
Confiscated fighting dogs are also at high risk of being stolen from shelters, foster care or other placements and returned to the fight trade.
Exceptions are sometimes made for puppies or other animals who show no signs of training or use in fighting, and who do not exhibit tendencies of aggression towards other animals or people. However, such animals must be carefully evaluated by trained animal behavior professionals, such as Certified Applied Animal Behaviorists, and their placement must be monitored over the long term.

it just sounds to me that folks are grasping at straws to find ANY big national humane group that isn't fundamentally anti-pit bull


Anonymous said...

Don't forget the AR goal is to eliminate dog ownership and all animal husbandry.

'Pit bulls' are a great place to start thanks to the propaganda campaign now entering its third decade. Wonder who is behind that?

The reason 'pit bulls' are the perfect target is that they are no dog and every dog.

People had best wake up soon, before it's too late.

-J. said...

I'm really hoping Best Friends accepts their invitation to assist in the evaluation of the Vick dogs, as they are the only national organization I've seen who doesn't endorse killing every dog.

Luisa said...

Unfortunately, Best Friends has also promoted the "dangerous breed" concept:

They'd be sending just one observer to look at the Vick dogs, from what I've read. I'm pulling for BAD RAP to play an active role.

Animal Chaplain said...

I watched Vick's public apology with my little son who USED TO wear Michael Vick jerseys to school. It is disturbing to think a certain percentage of the population is honestly going to be swayed by Michael Vick's "enlightenment" carefully crafted by his overpaid attorneys. Call me a cynic, but I don't believe a man who has been allegedly torturing animals since childhood coincidentally has a religious epiphany as a result of getting caught and losing his job. I hope I am wrong.

If there is anything good about the Michael Vick story, it is that there is an emerging increased awareness about animal cruelty and animal fighting. There is so much anger about this issue. If we channel it into a positive direction, hopefully, something good can come of it. However...

I think it is a sad commentary that we, as a culture, are using the Vick story to compare "What's worse?" "What's worse", we ask, "carelessly fathering illegitimate children, or dogfighting?". "Dogfighting or gambling?" "Dogfighting or rape?" "Dogfighting or racism?" "Dogfighting or hateful nationalism?" "Dogfighting or (fill in the blank)....?" The comparisons to dogfighting have been endless.

Dogfighting is one more piece of evidence our country is in need of a spiritual transformation (please note I said spiritual and not necessarily religious). Animals are sentient beings - they feel pain, and they suffer, just like we do. They are not more important, or less important than human beings, but like human beings, they are important, too.

Dogfighting pits one dog against another until one of them dies. The survivor gets his flesh torn off, ears ripped off, eyes pulled out, etc., and the reward for being "a winner" is to writhe in pain until the next fight. Enough said. The pictures make my flesh crawl. The losers are tortured, beaten, starved, electrocuted or drowned. For what? Because these poor creatures were unlucky enough to be born a dog!

Every major faith teaches its followers to be responsible stewards of animals and the Earth. Please help us get the word out that caring for animals, just like caring for people, is an important part of just being a decent person and citizen. If we make this a priority, there will be no more dogfighting horror stories, and no more pointless comparisons of evils. Let us all rise, together, to be better people than we are today, shall we?

Chaplain Nancy Cronk