Wednesday 18 February 2009

Animal Humane Society Minnesota

A recent story about the Animal Humane Society Minnesota, if true, reinforces my cynicism about "No Kill" rescue centers in America (see No Kill Cat Shelters). I know that there are many good and genuine ones but this one needs to prove to me it is one of the good ones. 130 cats were allegedly rescued from a mobile home in St. Anthony Minnesota by the Animal Humane Society (AHS), Minnesota. As I understand it, within 48 hours they had been euthanized (lets say, killed, it is more realistic). This is despite:
  • the mission statement of the AHS being stated as "To engage the hearts, hands and minds of the community to help animals".
  • the vision of the AHS being stated as "To compassionately and responsibly create a more humane world for animals."
  • AHS allegedly not returning calls to those offering support for the cats
  • an AHS representative saying that the cats would be kept for 2-3 weeks for evaluation (this time frame is, I believe, necessary to receive confirmation of ringworm from a laboratory)
The reason given for killing all the cats was that they had behavioral problems, herpes virus, ringworm and FIV. FIV cats are potentially adoptable. Ringworm can be transmitted from cat to human. However, ringworm is really nothing to worry about for humans. It is easy to cure, of no real consequence (see ringworm in cats). It is not a reason to kill. And it is simply not believable that all 130 had behavioral problems. Feline herpes is a common disease and tends to flare up when cats become stressed, which was a predicable outcome under these circumstances. The reason to kill all the cats given by the spokesperson of the Animal Humane Society, Minnesota, does not therefore stand up to scrutiny, in my opinion.

Why were they killed in such a perfunctory manner? I am very cynical. Was financial reward involved? Were do the bodies go to? Are they used in a commercial process somewhere? Or was it just a case of too many cats to deal with and the best way was to kill them all without going through all the checks etc. And if so what is the purpose of a rescue center? You tell me.

The story comes from The news comes from Mike Fry of Animal Ark Shelter, Hastings. But these are not his words, they are mine. I just don't think it is as it seems out there, sometimes. Interestingly, one person thinks there are no feral or abandoned cat population problems (see solutions to cat overpopulation). Are things dysfunctional in the cat world?

Animal Humane Society Minnesota to The Cat should not be Domesticated

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