20/20 on SPCA

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by CraftyDiva, Jun 4, 2005.

  1. CraftyDiva

    CraftyDiva Is anybody here?

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    Anyone watch 20/20 last night?

    Had an expose on SPCA stealing people's animals and then turning around and selling them. One rancher complained that people where coming on his property and picking out what horse they wanted to buy as SPCA was standing there handing him the warrent to take them.

    20/20 asked to go on a rescue with SPCA agent and the camera man was a vet, he couldn't see any reason for taking a woman's dogs (she raised show dogs). When confronted the agent said they were abused, and yet on of the SPCA examiners clearly states on camera while looking over the animals at the shelter that, "This one is a bit overweight." I'm guessing the abuse came from feeding too much.




    Here's the story if you missed it.........http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=817494&page=1
     
  2. stanb999

    stanb999 Well-Known Member

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    Remember to support your local chapter of P.E.T.A

    People, Eating, Tasty, Animals.
     

  3. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    Ok, the people eating tasty animals was cute the first hundred times, but...
     
  4. edcopp

    edcopp Well-Known Member

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    Once again the Liberals are samarter than people :haha:
     
  5. bergere

    bergere Just living Life

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    That is so disgusting and sad. Talking about abusing the system.
    Seems like over the years things like that have only gotten worse. Is to the point many people I know, do not want strangers to know they have animals.

    I now live on a out of the way dirt road. I have had people take pictures of my very well taken care of animals. I walk out, they see me, once they do, they drive away refusing to look at me. Either they want to cause problems or steal my animals. :bash: Just can't trust anyone any more.
     
  6. americanbulldog

    americanbulldog American Hunter

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    That report was a real eye opener. Talk about abuse of power! That guy from Texas that wouldn't even let that elderly woman say goodbye to her beloved pet because it was a "ward of the state" --- he was out of control. These dogs are peoples whole lives. These people that do these types of things to helpless pet owners are on power trips.
    I have worked for a security company for many years and it reminded me an awful lot of some of the people that go to work in security. They want to feel powerful so they want to put on a uniform. Give them a uniform and a badge and holy cow they think you just made them an Admiral of the Pacific fleet!
    Even when you remind them that they are making just over minimum wage and they don't have any real power they are still out of control.
    This guy from the SPCA was making over 80K a year and he did have the power in TX to ruin peoples lives. He even got a law passed that said you have NO APPEAL once they take your animals away! What the heck kind of state is Texas? This guy came off as a security guard (or cop wanna be) on steroids. Not even cops have a no appeal rule. You have a guy that didn't go to vet school and doesn't have the education to make these types of decisions saying he knows better then them. Vets don't know everything, but they can certainly tell if an animal is being starved or not.
     
  7. CraftyDiva

    CraftyDiva Is anybody here?

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    The funny thing about this (if there is such a thing) is that they're only taking expensive animals, like the show dogs and race horses. You don't see them hitting some little old lady with 65 cats living in a 2 room apartment. So they are in it for the money, no matter how much denial is made.
     
  8. CraftyDiva

    CraftyDiva Is anybody here?

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    The PETA fools would have just let the animals go, "better to die free then caged", is the new motto.

    And yet you don't see PETA turning any lions or tigers loose from zoos, they did hit the monkeys somewhere not too long ago.
     
  9. Cat

    Cat Well-Known Member

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    I think what needs to happen is people need to flood this man's telephone, his inbox, voicemail, post office box etc. with what a SOB he is, and do the same with his superiors. Everyone answers to someone, and the squeaky wheel gets the grease so the people where this happens need to start squeaking rather loudly. I must admit a 20/20 story reeks of squeak! Bravo for these people, who didn't cower to the authority this man had and put his grits in the public spotlight in a national way.
     
  10. Brandi in VA

    Brandi in VA Well-Known Member

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  11. PLPP

    PLPP Boer Lover

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    Do rescue for many years now I have seen first hand the abuse the SPCA does. They will not help the animals that need help becuase they would most likely have to put the animal down. THey pick on the people who they can make money off their animals. Sad really Sad. If you only knew what I have seen you would want them all shut down like I do.
     
  12. americanbulldog

    americanbulldog American Hunter

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    Come on PLPP please tell us all what you have seen. The truth can only be a good thing. Besides if you really would like them shut down doing things like this can help achieve that goal. It also might feel good to get it off you chest.
    Also, I just would love to know. :) What is in the mind of these people?
     
  13. DrippingSprings

    DrippingSprings In Remembrance

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    Animal Rescuers or Thieves?Some Owners Accuse Their SPCA Chapter of Taking Their Pets And Selling Them
    (ABC News)
    Commentary By John Stossel

    June 3, 2005 — SPCAs have an image of being animal rescuers. And there's no question that the many Societies for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals around the country do a lot of good work, rushing in to save animals from abusive people.

    But some people who've had animals taken away by animal rescuers say some SPCAs have acted like petty tyrants on power trips. They say they use their police powers to take away people's animals, even when the animals don't need rescuing.

    found that hard to believe, but lots of people have been saying that their local SPCA has wrecked their lives.

    We spent a year investigating the SPCA, looking at 50 cases from New York to California. Many people think that SPCAs have a national headquarters, but SPCAs are really separate, independent operations located in towns across the country. Some animal owners claimed that when they became overextended in caring for their animals, an SPCA accused them of neglect, confiscated their animals and sold them.

    The SPCAs then keep the money.

    'Equine Shopping Mall'

    One case we followed involved a New Jersey SPCA office accusing horse owner Joe Stuebing of starving his animals.

    He said the horses had lost weight simply because they were sick and he was overwhelmed. But a local SPCA filed charge after charge against him for what it said was inhumane treatment. Then they took custody of his horses, some of which were champion bloodlines valued together at almost $1 million.

    Stuebing says that the day after the SPCA took custody of his horses at Stuebing's own barn, they invited people to his farm to take his horses out from under him. "This was like an equine shopping mall. Like it was ripe for the pickings," Stuebing told "20/20."

    "They are a self-righteous group of people that are in it for money," said Stuebing. "They don't care about the horses. They don't care about anything else, except money."

    That's a charge we heard repeatedly from people who lost animals.

    Sometimes the owners hire lawyers and file appeals, but they rarely win. Judges usually side with the SPCAs. After all, the animal rescuers are the experts, aren't they?

    SPCA Leader Crafts Media Image
    Dave Garcia has confiscated thousands of animals in several states. He now heads the Dallas SPCA, one of the biggest such organizations in America.

    You get a sense of how important he considers his work when you listen to his opinion about the kind of people who abuse animals.

    "If they beat a dog to death, then it's just a step up to beat a co-worker, or beat a classmate or and then a step up to … kill someone and then a step up to do a mass murder," Garcia told "20/20."

    On local television, Garcia is often portrayed as a savior rescuing animals. And he has saved a lot of animals from abusive people.

    "I should not have to warn someone to take care of their animals," said Garcia. "If they're here to make money with them, then take care of them."

    Garcia led an effort to get Texas politicians to pass a law saying once a Justice of the Peace approves one of the SPCA's confiscations, an owner can't do anything about it.

    Under Garcia's leadership, the Dallas SPCA has seen financial penalties against animal owners quadruple.

    The SPCA invites television crews along on their raids confiscating animals. Such broadcasts spur the public to make big donations — a total of $6 million last year to the Dallas SPCA — which helps pay Garcia's $80,000 annual salary.

    One of those raids occurred at Renee Moore's dog kennel, with TV reporters stating 120 dogs lived in deplorable conditions.

    But Moore's dogs are show dogs. Some of them were thin, she said, because they were nursing large litters of puppies. Vets and breeders told us it can be normal for a dog's ribs to show when a dog is nursing lots of puppies.

    But the SPCA took custody of all of Renee's dogs, including award-winners — worth up to $600 each. After the radio, her vet wrote that while "housing and sanitation needed improvement" and suggested a cutback in the number of animals, he also said "Moore does care about and care for her animals no starvation was evident." A judge upheld the confiscation.

    Unable to afford a lawyer, Renee wrote her own lawsuit charging the SPCA with stealing, but the suit was dismissed. Renee's livelihood was destroyed. She and her husband were forced to sell their home and move into a trailer.

    I would like to see them punished for what they've done," said Moore. "And they humiliated me on TV and I'd like them to apologize to me on TV."

    '20/20' Follows Garcia On a Raid
    All this made us want to see firsthand how Garcia works. So we asked and received permission to go along on an SPCA raid.

    Garcia didn't know that our cameraman was a veterinarian, Dr. Gaylon TeSlaa.

    Early one morning last September, "20/20" accompanied Garcia as he went with a police officer to a Justice of the Peace to get the warrant needed to raid a dog kennel.

    He claimed the owner didn't provide adequate food, water and shelter, and showed photos of what he said were filthy kennels.

    After a brief informal hearing, Garcia got permission to raid, which meant he and an armed police officer could go to the kennel without any warning.

    Garcia told us to expect to see animals that were urine soaked and fecal stained. "20/20" didn't see that.

    TeSlaa said, while there was some neglect because the owner had been away for four days, it was correctable. Since her being away was an unusual event, he saw no cruelty and certainly no reason to confiscate the dogs. But Garcia saw cruelty and said the dogs needed to be saved.

    "Under Texas state law, these animals have been cruelly treated. The definition of cruelly treated is having to live in your own feces, unsanitary conditions, no food or water," said Garcia.

    But when people keep animals, there's routinely feces found in the cages. "That's part of having an animal," said TeSlaa.

    Moments after the SPCA finished collecting the dogs, the owner arrived. Pam Chennault said she couldn't believe her dogs were being taken, including her favorite, Gidget.

    Despite her protests, she was given an immediate court date and was not allowed to go to the van that held Gidget and her other dogs.

    "She was my very first dog," Chennault said while crying.

    Challenging the Raid

    After raiding her kennel, Garcia took the dogs to the SPCA where the workers cited problems like fleas and mange.

    Not that the technicians are experts. In fact, our vet was the only veterinarian in sight. "These pets were not abused. They were not in poor health. None of them were in life-threatening conditions," said TeSlaa.

    When I mentioned there was no vet there during the raid, Garcia replied: "We had vets there."

    But he didn't. The Texas SPCA later e-mailed us admitting that it didn't, but said in this case that vets weren't needed.

    Chennault hired a lawyer and tried to get her animals back, but the court gave her only two hours to prepare her case. She was advised to settle and give her dogs to the SPCA. She did. Most of the dogs were adopted, a few were put to sleep. We don't know what happened to Gidget.

    When I told Garcia that our vet didn't think the animals should have been taken, he said, "The judge did."

    But the judge permitted the raid because of the data Garcia brought to them. I suggested that he "spins" the evidence. "No, I don't spin them," said Garcia. "The judge looks at the facts. Looks at the probable cause, and the judge makes the decision."

    I asked him about the claim that he steals people's animals.

    "No, I'm not stealing no one's animals," said Garcia.

    He said he dismisses most complaints without any confiscation. Garcia said, "It's about the welfare of an animal."

    Tell that to the 50 people we talked to who lost animals to Garcia and other SPCAs.

    Joe Stuebing is fortunate that he doesn't keep his horses in Texas, where he would be under the thumb of the Texas no-appeal rule Garcia lobbied for. After a court ruled the SPCA could take his animals, he appealed, and won, because his farm was raided without a warrant. The SPCA still says he was abusing his horses, but today he has his horses back.

    In Texas, Moore could not appeal, and she said she'll never get over what Garcia and the SPCA did to her.

    "I was a dog breeder. I was a dog shower," said Moore. "My dogs were my life."

    Remember, when considering donations: each SPCA is separately run. Also, the ASPCA is a different organization
     
  14. mommy_mh

    mommy_mh New Member

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    Has anyone been to the Dallas SPCA? Talk about deplorable! Everytime I have been there I walk in and feel dirty. I wonder if you can turn in the SPCA...
     
  15. Xandras_Zoo

    Xandras_Zoo Well-Known Member

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    We saw that last night. It's digusting. That one sleazy man that they interviewed... who took that's woman's dogs and accused her of animal abuse when one of them was FAT... he was a real piece of work. The best part was that interview. Quote: "People don't hold urine soaked animals up close like this, they hold them like THIS"

    Besides the fact that that was obviously for the cash, SPCA people tend to exaggerate, and forget that they are dealing with ANIMALS. Now, they still need room to run a bit, clean surroundings, food, water and companionship, but really, they don't need anything too eleaborate to be happy.
     
  16. americanbulldog

    americanbulldog American Hunter

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    mommy mh,
    Turn them in! Absolutely do it! No one is above the law (or they are not supposed to be). If you have seen conditions that were a horror show make the call. Call the press first (most of them have a special number for hot line tips), and have them send a crew to film what they see. Then you can call the law enforcement in after they get the film.
    This was just a national story and there are always plenty of young reporters trying to make a name for themselves. I would contact your local ABC station they will be more likely to want to get in on this action.
    I am not joking mommy mh, call ...... what is the worst that can happen? You are just trying to be a lover of animals. They can't get you in trouble over that. If you want to be really brave go with your own camera and film it yourself and then give a copy to each station and the police.
    I bet their place is far more filthy then the kennels they took the dogs from. They rescue them from happy homes to sell them (after they get to spend time in a filthy doggie jail). Someone out there has to care about this! Wouldn't you think? :confused:
     
  17. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    SPCA, PETA, HSUS, ALF, ELF etc.

    Rope.

    Tree.

    Some assembly required.
     
  18. Shepherd

    Shepherd Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for bringing this to our attention. I'm in the process of passing this on to many people across the country, to make THEM aware of it too.
     
  19. Sherri C

    Sherri C Plays with yarn

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    What about those "Animal Cops" shows that they have on TV on Animal Planet. Some of the confiscations they do seem kind of iffy to me....

    Our local no-kill animal shelter is kind of wacky too. I was thinking of getting a dog to help keep the raccoons away from the house. To adopt an animal from this place you have to agree to THREE pre-adoption home visits, and you have to sign a paper giving them permission to come on to your property any time they want to check on the dog, for the rest of the dogs life!
     
  20. 1sttimemom

    1sttimemom Well-Known Member

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    I agree some of the animal cops shows do have some stuff that i consider "iffy" too. On the Houston one yesterday they confiscated some cattle and were stating how they were so thin. They really didn't look bad off to me at all. Mothers were nursing their calves OK and the bull was downright chubby. These were not huge beef type cattle, looked more like spanish type cattle which are naturally more boney. One calf was slightly limping. They kept saying he had broken leg. Turned out on xray they could find nothing wrong at all. The horses they took from the same place were a little thin and one grey had a weird old injury causing a hole through his neck. However, the injury was healed & horse was sound/usable. They also had a couple hogs and they looked fine. The horses went into the adoption program. Don't know about the hogs? The cattle ended up on a "rescue" type farm were they said they would be protected for life without worry of slaughter. Funny cause the bull was then running with the cows/calves. You would think as a rescue place they would try to limit breeding. Wonder what they will do with next years calf crop? Wonder if they can take *all* the animals because the horses were thin?

    I think animal rescue does hve their place, but some do go overboard. I had an older arab mare a few years ago that I had rescued from severe starvation. We offered to buy the horse, the owner ended up just giving her to us. Vet said the horse was a 2 on the 1 to 10 weight scale! Othrwise nothing wrong with her. We had her a couple yrs & trail rode her. I didn't need her & tried to place her with various handicap riding & children 4H type groups. None would take her cause she was arab and older (late teens). This was a gorgeous purebred mare (I didn't have papers, but she was neck branded), well broke, healthy! I called a horse rescue group thinking they might be able to place her and they treated me like I was a criminal because I wouldn't give them all my tack and i didn't have vet shot records, etc. I do my own vaccines (have been since age 12 plus am a nurse!). I found another agency to take her & when their lrep came to get her she was so surprised that the mare & other horses were in very good weight, well mannered,etc. I was a little offended that they then also wanted to 'adopt' my very fancy registered morgan mare. I said nope, but you can buy her foal for $4500! I will never go through horse adoption again...best off to sell to a decent buyer privately. I could have probably easily sold this arab mare for $1000, but at the time just wanted a nice home for her as she'd been through so much.