Thursday, February 20, 2014

Shelters Use Absurd Dog/Cat Aggression Tests, Your Dog Would Also Fail!

TO ALL INVOLVED WITH GREENHILL HUMANE SOCIETY AND FIRST STREET SHELTER and those who should be monitoring what goes on at these shelters:

Sadly, this group, which is a non-profit (Greenhill Humane Society and First Street Shelter), but under contract to the cities of Eugene and Springfield, Oregon and Lane County, Oregon, is using absurd behavior testing and dooming a dog called Rhett, to possible euthanasia because he is deemed aggressive.  This apparently is not the first dog to be lethally labeled by such testing at this shelter.  

They throw a stuffed dog or cat toy to the dog and because he shakes it and pulls the stuffing out, he is labeled as dangerous and can only go to a rescue that has an IN-HOUSE animal behaviorist/trainer.  My dogs whips his toys back and forth in his mouth, pulls out the stuffing and he would not hurt a flea!  This is normal play.  Very few rescues have the financial resources to have a fulltime animal trainer or behaviorist on staff.

One of the best Rottweiler rescues in the country, Happy Tails Rottweiler rescue, out of Goldendale, Washington, has offered to take Rhett, but was eliminated for not having an in-house trainer (they have one on call) and for having "too many other dogs." (No evidence given that Rhett is dog aggressive or doesn't do well with other dogs.) 

When many of us who know and support Happy Tails for the excellent work they do called First Street/Greenhill animal shelter in support of this being a wonderful option for Rhett, the calls were deemed "harassment" and Happy Tails was eliminated as a possible resource to take Rhett.  Now the shelter refuses to answer questions, does not answer phone calls - but apparently has no other appropriate rescue for this dog. 

When I read this posting on Facebook, I see another nice dog named Otis, awaits the same fate!   

The word is now out that Greenhill and First Street Shelter have a high kill rate but will not answer any questions or release information on the dogs they have and what becomes of them.

I urge you to look in to this matter.  Since Greenhill is under contract with the cities of Eugene, Springfield and Lane County, I would think their operations should be completely open to the public, since they are funded, via contract, by taxpayer dollars. 

Thank you.  It is time for animal shelters to live up to the concept of "shelter" and rehabilitation, not mislabel and kill.


Beverly Trover
Portland, Oregon

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