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SPCA responds to claims of indiscriminate euthanasia

The Cape of Good Hope SPCA is horrified at the vicious attack made against it by the writer of the message: "SPCA murdered the sweetest dog i have ever met" and vehemently denies and strongly objects to the writers' claim that: "they have been desensitised and will put down anything that is not claimed within the day"

According to Allan Perrins CEO of the Cape of Good Hope SPCA these statements could not be further from the truth and he says that caring animal lovers need to stand-up and challenge this sort of rubbish. If not the SPCA risks losing its “Animal Angels” – staff and volunteers who work tirelessly for the benefit of animals and who suffer enough having to pick up the pieces and clean up the mess of uncaring animal owners.

The true facts of this story are as follows: the dog belonged to someone living in Bredasdorp who gave the dog to someone living in Strandfontein. The dog escaped from the new owners’ vehicle (on the same day that it was given to him) and ran all the way to Tokai. The SPCA collected the dog from St Francis Veterinary Practise in Bergvliet who’s vet had assessed the dog to be very aggressive and wanted us to collect him asap as they could not handle him due to his aggression. Most importantly the SPCA found the owner within record time (on the same day that he was admitted) thanks to the excellent work done by the SPCA Lost and Found department.

When contacted the new owners said they did not want to take the dog back as they felt that he was far too aggressive (they could not even enter his kennel). They subsequently contacted the previous owners (a  divorced couple – husband living in the UK and wife still living in SA) to assist with the identification/handling of the dog. It was positively identified but the previous owner’s wife who could not take the dog back because she now lives in a flat. Whilst the dog was friendly towards her she was fearful of him injuring someone else and felt that it would be in his best interests if he were rather humanely euthanaised. The new owners who accepted him with a view to breeding with him eventually saw reason (after discussing the dog’s vicious temperament with our resident Animal Behaviourist) and agreed to rather have him humanely euthanaised instead of him having to be cruelly confined / restrained for the rest of his life.

These dogs are renowned for bonding with their owners and given that they were originally bred as Russian Guard Dogs and have the capacity to bring down a lion we have only scratched the surface of this tragic  incident and feel that everyone ultimately decided in his best interests as there are undoubtedly fates far worse than a humane ending – like being chained or caged for life.

Our staff were left emotionally drained and crying knowing that there was no other way out and it subsequently stands to reason that we are left feeling hurt and further traumatised by this very one-sided message which makes us out to be a bunch of callous murderers.

To say that we are deeply offended this message is an understatement but this will not deter us in dedicated efforts to prevent animal cruelty and provide the best possible care and shelter to stray abandoned and  injured animals.

Allan Perrins
Cape of Good Hope SPCA

[Posted 9 September 2008]



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