The following is Dave Gourley's response (in red) to an email sent to him by a Stealth Volunteer. His email response to her was forwarded to many of us who were volunteering to reunite Katrina pets with their owners and I posted it on my blog on 1/26/06. Today, Dave posted a comment:
(I have no idea what he means by people in glass houses but I'll be posting a comment soon, when I have some time)
I have not been able to read the orginial (sic) thread -however regarding the dogs of Katrina -We were instrumental in helping with the rescue of over 100 Rotts from Lamar-Dixon, in Gonzales, La I managed to rescue 3 rotts and assisted with the rescue of one Bullmastiff...The American Rottweiler Club mobilized & got out over 100 dogs themselves.
I have never in the 30 + years of being in the dog world ever seen dogs of all breeds go thru the TRAUMA that these dogs have.
Personal opinion -
NO DOG SHOULD BE RE-UNITED WITH PAST FAMILY MEMEBERS!!! (sic)
Now this is a brash statement - why would I make it...these people left their dogs...dogs were left on the side of the road - in crates - covered with clothing or blankets in 100 + degree heat.
They were abandoned by their owners an (sic) put through tremendous fear of the unknown,rescued by strangers,given a fresh look at like (sic) through the eyes of fear.
If the people who are yelling at this dog are trying to make the dog forget - IT WILL NOT HAPPEN - they are only reinforcing the fear and growing mistrust that the dog is going through.
This dog needs to totally resocialized from the get go and that means a NEW FAMILY - foster care - whatever - but should not be returned to it's owners -
Of the dogs that I rescued - the foster/permamnet (sic) families - started from the begining (sic) -I understand that Rottweilers are not Poodles - I am beginning to beleive (sic) that Poodles maybe more intelligent - but they still have memories - Rotties are less likely to accept immediate change...they are more suspect, but they also realize and accept HONEST caring and sense that the people who are working to rehab these dogs in questions are real in their efforts.
Poodles are a hearty breed - but are they as hearty as rotts - I do not know - But what I do know is the dogs who were abandoned and had to fend for themselves - regardless of breed - they are still somewhat distrustfull (sic) of their new areas
Once a dog has been rescued and re-introduced to society they should NOT be re-traumitized (sic) - they should not be returned to those that abandoned them in the their time of need!
Home of 1 Bullmastiff,1 Standard Poodle,2
Rottweilers,1 Chinese Crested & 5 Border Terriers
Dave Gourley here - had no idea this blog existed -
Yes - at the time of Katrina - I represented Sandragon Kennels in Pa. Yes - we have been in the dog world for over 30 years. - I had been involved in Rottweiler Rescue
for over 12 years prior to Katrina - NO - we did not come to bring your dogs out and breed to them - After seeing the sheriff department officers shoot those dogs in the school, I canceled my appointments in my real job ( providing homecare for seniors) rented a van and headed for Lamar-Dixon -I understand that those people who were ordered to leave their dogs did so extremely reluntant (sic)- I have no complaint with them -
It is the people who left their dogs on the sides of the road - bitches in whelp - whole litters in vari crates - covered with clothing in temperatures exceeding 100 degrees - it is with people who LEFT their dogs tethered to their houses and left them...
It is these people that I was so upset with.
The 3 dogs that I managed to get out - One was adopted in Staten Island by a rescue group, who spent $35,000 to rehab this dog - the dog had 4 major surgeries on its eyes, it tested positive for heartworm, the dog was 33 pounds under weight, he was neutered and finally place in a loving home.
One dog was a rottweiler mix - went to a couple of Doctors (husband & wife) who spent a ton of money rehabing the dog - mediacal (sic) bills - animal behavorist (sic)- etc. the 3rd dog - we guessed her age at between 6 to 9 months - she was positive for heartworm, she had tapeworms and a host of other parasites in her body, she was a mess. My wife n I kept her with our family for 7 months - getting her healthy - socializing her - and eventually found a retired nurse who fell in love with her to adopt her.
The Bullmastiff went to Bullmastiff rescue and was properly cared for and placed.
The poodles that Carolina Rescue took out were all properly cared for and placed in loving homes...
We are not bad people - we are dog people - we are horse people and yes I have been in your shoes - more times than I wish to speak of...
People who live in GLASS houses should not throw stones