Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Who killed Icy and Why?

Diablo & Icy: Icy and Diablo (dibo) These 2 striking huskies find themselves in need of a loving, committed home together. Their owner is moving out of the country and due to the hot climate and long distance, he cannot take them. Icy is a beautiful spayed female siberian husky, black and white. she was born aug 30, she is 11 years young. she has one blue eye and one half blue, half brown eye - very cool! She is very energetic, a little bit timid but loves hugs.
Diablo (or Dibo) is a striking male siberian husky, white and beige. he was born on july 12, he will be celebrating his 8th birthday this month. diablo has 2 blue eyes. he's very energetic and goofy... a very lovey dovey dog. icy and diablo are bonded and need a loving home together. they will come with all their own supplies....beds, leashes, bowls etc. Contact Steve Namen 416-200-0478

That was the ad posted on Toronto Adopt-a-Pet on July 11.  Via M. Michelle Nadon at C4P Animal Rescue, and the Toronto Examiner, a further plea went out for homes for these beautiful dogs (July 17, 2010).   Owner Steve Namen had been desperately searching for a good home for his dogs for some time.  While I don't pretend to agree with most of the people I see "re-homing" their animals, there ARE legitimate reasons and his seemed so.  Finally, time ran out, and trusting in the promises of the "new" THS he reluctantly surrendered his dogs, confident that the place that had once epitomized compassion and caring and had believed every animal deserved a chance would do well by his dogs.  This surrender took place (subject to confirmation) on or around Friday, July 16.

YET, according to reliable sources, within HOURS of their arrival, Icy was euthanized. Yeah, this healthy, beloved, beautiful dog was euthanized.  While the reason why this atrocity was allowed remains unanswered - there is no question it DID happen. Icy, beloved pet, bonded strongly to partner Diablo was killed.  By Toronto Humane Society staff.

While we are thankful that Diablo dodged the bullet and was subsequently adopted, the fact remains that a healthy 11 year old dog was killed.

The new Board of the THS pronounced themselves "shocked" and promised a speedy and thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding this decision.  That investigation was purportedly to have come to some form of resolution today.

So, what is the outcome?  What were the circumstances surrounding the decision to euthanize?  Who made the decision - an individual? A group?  Was it Garth Jerome or head vet Karen Ward?  If it is asserted there was a judicious decision made based on sound reasons, then the Board should have no compunction in allowing the public to know those reasons.  The current Board has promised unequivocally that transparency and communication are two major tenets of their platform.  The twisted private machinations of former directors and staff were to be a thing of the past.

The THS opened on June 28, 2010.  Now, a month later the direction the THS intends to take remains murky and unclear.  It continues to only take owner-surrenders - which surrenders are cumbersome and far too involved and by any standard, could and probably do discourage many individuals from surrendering animals.  Strays, abused, abandoned and neglected animals are no longer their concern (at least right now) - those animals in short that used to find in the THS their ONLY place of refuge.

The direction the THS intends to take continues to elude understanding as communication continues to remain sketchy and unclear.  At this point, it is not entirely evident whether the facility ever intends to at least attempt to pursue a "no-kill" policy as so many supporters, members and volunteers sought.  Certainly, euthanizing a dog within hours of its arrival, with no clear explanation as to why does not bode well for the future.

It's no secret that I have no use for THS Executive Director Garth Jerome ; however- he has at least been clear that euthanasia is something he deems inevitable and in many cases probable; let's not forget that he has reiterated more than once that the THS is "not a sanctuary".  However, perhaps I was naive in hoping that the definitive vote for a brand new Board, many of whom have espoused their support and often passionate commitment to pursuing a "no-kill" option (keeping in mind this does not mean NOT KILL EVER - please google Wingrad for a better grasp of what is meant by no-kill) would mean the dawning of a new era for the THS.

At this point,  7:37 on Wednesday, July 28 I STILL have not been able to find any indication from the Board that they have reached some understanding of the reasons behind euthanizing an old but healthy dog.

It really isn't rocket science.

Who made the decision to kill Icy?

Based on what criteria?

Okayed then by whom?

And IS this then what we can expect from the THS for the future?

These questions are not difficult nor are are they unequivocal - SOMEONE made that decision.

Toronto animal lovers deserve to know.


  1. What?! Thank you posting this I can't believe this! Every day I'm becoming more skeptical of the 'new THS'. This is atrocious and they have to be held accountable for this. I'm furious, this is so disgusting.

  2. Sandra Dobson LovellAugust 2, 2010 at 2:23 PM

    We just can't let them away with this. We need answers and NOW!!!

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