Earlier, we blogged about Akiak, a children’s book about the Iditarod and a brave old husky who helped win the race. Akiak was considered too old to lead the team, but she was wise, and without her, there would have been no victory.
Diablo was fortunate to be rehomed. Icy was not.
Within hours of intake, this beautiful husky was summarily killed. An investigation has been taking place over the past several weeks.
Members, donors and the community are keen to know how this happened and what safeguards have been put in place so that this does not take place again.
Icy’s owner had mentioned that she was healthy for an older girl, with only a benign growth on one leg. Icy had been a family pet for 11 years.
This blogger cannot fathom how a veterinarian could have determined, in a matter of hours, that Icy was too sick and suffering to be adopted, and needed to be killed. We know that staff, management, volunteers and members of the board were devastated that this was somehow allowed to happen.
It was a combination of factors, according to the THS – a vague reference to their new euthanasia scorecard. We would like to see their euthanasia policy published on their website, hopefully with revisions that promise a no-kill direction where the pink needle would be reserved only for animals who are terminally ill and suffering, or who have irredeemable behavioural problems. Otherwise, all animals at THS need to be given every chance to be adopted.
We would like to know what course-corrections have taken place with respect to existing policies that allowed a veterinarian to cut Icy’s life short. We understand that the SAFER test (a behavioural measure) has, since, been discontinued as the determinant as to who lives and who dies. The THS board has amended its intake policy since Icy’s killing, but we want to understand what that means and assure ourselves that it is adequate.
We would like a commitment from Toronto Humane Society to a no-kill objective, as defined above. We are thrilled that Bill Bruce, head of Calgary Animal Services, has accepted an invitation to consult with THS at the end of August. He will surely bring some no-kill best practices to the shelter, and there are staff and board members who would eagerly embrace such practices.
Please read Selkie’s eloquent analysis of the complexities of this case at Tailspin.
In honour of Icy, I’ve created a totemic necklace and earring set with a fine silver origami focal, sterling, quartz crystals and labradorite. The silver focal was originally intended to commemorate Hiroshima. Labradorite is a grey stone with a fierce internal blue fire like the Aurora Borealis. A beautiful stone with a soul.