Sunday, March 25, 2012

What is your secret Houston SPCA?

From one rescuer to another, please let me know how you do it.

Please let me know how you can kill every single pit bull like the innocent girl last Saturday?  How can you look at yourselves in the mirror?

Some of us in rescue have a hard time sleeping when the images of the ones we can’t save haunt our dreams.

This one pit bull’s image has burned in my head all week long since your organization opened your big expensive doors to her.

We all know she’s dead. That is the horror. It’s like the parent whose child disappears, who spends years searching and crying for their loss.

Dogs like this are our children.

There will be no closure on this girl as the Houston SPCA is rather above the law. They seem to be able to legally confiscate and kill Houston's stray animals at will  and never have to disclose records or numbers to anyone. Everyone is in the dark except the director, Patti Mercer. She runs the show. You might even say she runs the town.

Let me tell you a little bit about us. We are all somewhat normal people, most of whom work and try to save a dog or cat as we can.

We don’t have big expense accounts or funding and the blessings of Houston high society. We don’t have a big half empty facility to house and care for the animals we deem worthy like Betsy the bear. Remember her? You spent nine years working to find her a safe place to go, a worthy cause for a group with SPCA in their title. All the while, you were killing truckloads of pit bulls in the backroom. No cake for them or a stand up routine by Herr Mercer.

No, those unwanted, uncared for, nameless thousands upon thousands are routinely and how do you word it, humanely euthanized?

Again, how do you humane souls sleep at night? How to you put on your lipstick and look at yourself in the morning before you go to work to earn your  $200K a year plus perks?

I realize you have your rough days. Much like the HSPCA rescue coordinator who hung up on the rescue group calling in to try and save this one pit bull during the 72-hour stray period. It’s hard. We get it.

It’s a bit much to try and conceive killing all those pit bulls, but sometimes that one gets to you. At least, that’s how it is with me. That one got to me.

By the way. That face of hers, all scratched up? You probably don’t know this since the pit bulls you deal with are all dead, but those are fence abrasions. That’s most likely why the rest of her body is pristine. You killed her for being someone’s backyard dog, a dog who wandered up to the wrong citizen’s house to get a drink of water.

That good citizen offered her a dirty Tupperware bowl of tap water and turned her over to the Houston SPCA. He might not even know they kill all dogs they think look pittie. He’s got a life to lead and this girl got in his way. That’s what animals do, right, get in the way.

I used to visit Houston as a girl growing up in Beaumont. I felt like I’d died and gone to Heaven. The buildings were all shiny and tall. Everything seemed rich and beautiful, like the socialites who donate 10 million dollars a year to the Houston SPCA.

You know what, Houston? You don’t look so beautiful to me anymore. I have to remind myself of the good Houstonians who drop everything and put the pedal to the metal when they hear a report of a stray dog. At first, I was in awe of the Houston rescue community working together to save lives. I”ve come to realize they are absolutely terrified of the Houston SPCA picking up these dogs whose fates will match that of the girl from last Saturday.

I am just one person and certainly not a match for the powers that keep the Houston SPCA machine oiled up and running, but I have a voice. I have a photograph and I have a memory. I can’t do anything about the thousands and thousands of dogs being killed at the Houston SPCA, but I will not forget this one. That's a promise.