Thursday, June 15, 2006

Wisconsin shelter swamped after dog-fighting bust

The Dane County Humane Society in Madison, WI, could use some help after the seizure of 47 pit bulls from a suspected dog-fighting ring. They are asking for donations to help defray the $10 a day it costs to shelter each dog. The dogs, many of whom are injured, cannot be re-homed and must remain in the shelter pending the outcome of legal proceedings. To make more room for the seized dogs, the shelter is also waiving adoption fees on their available dogs until June 22 ... just in case you're in the area and happen to be looking for a new pal.


Steve said...

I'm glad that this dog fighting ring was broken up. However, I'm not so sure the decision to waive adoption fees is so wise. If someone is thinking: "Hey they aren't charging for dogs this week, let's go get one" what does that say about their ability to support that dog? But then again you would hope the dog's new life would be better than being in the shelter...

Maybe I'm getting too cynical too. I assume the humane society does screening of the adopters. I'd really hate to think that some other dog fighting "person" (in the loosest sense of the word) would go in and adopt some dog(s) for free to use as bait dogs.

To make matters worse, many (all?) of the pit bulls will probably be put down since many of them won't be adoptable. A number of no kill shelters here have many pit bulls "stuck" in the shelters since your average person won't/can't adopt them and the people who want to adopt them don't pass the screening as fit adopters.

It is a really difficult situation.

Lisa B. said...

You'd be surprised how little screening some shelters actually do. When I volunteered at a county shelter many years ago, the only people they wouldn't adopt to were people who had surrendered pets in the past and people who had been convicted of animal-related crimes. Otherwise, if you showed up with the soption fee you could walk out with a dog or cat in a half-hour. That said, I don't know what they do in Dane County. I think even a token fee is a good idea, though because it does discourage those who are aacquiring dogs for bad purposes.

Probably most of the pit bulls will end up being put down, but the court case could drag on for months or even years first. That puts the shelter in a really bad spot.