This letter is in response to Ms. O'Neil's comments about the way a litter of kittens were recently handled at Payson Humane Society.
I would first like to say that we, too, are looking forward to Rim Country Animal Sanctuary getting their doors open. Ms. O'Neil doesn't seem to understand that unlike other places in town, like all the coffee houses, oil change places, etc., animal rescue organizations are not in competition with each other. Sadly, there are more than enough unwanted, abandoned animals to keep a half dozen rescue organizations busy around the clock in this area.
Another thing that Ms. O'Neil doesn't know is that two of the people who were working the RCAS booth at the showcase are some of the foster parents that have struggled with us this year to save as many kittens as possible. What Ms. O'Neil forgot to ask about was the thought process behind the decision to euthanize those kittens. What she also neglected to find out was how many kittens, and puppies for that matter, have been saved by the loving and dedicated staff and volunteers at Payson Humane Society this spring.
I know that the person she was speaking to had been taking home a box full of babies almost every night since spring hit.
The kittens (Ms. O'Neil) was talking about had been going home with the staff for four days, and they were failing to thrive. Through a process of trial and error, our supervisors have set some realistic guidelines for dealing with babies, one box after another, that reach our door. They are based on the age of the babies. As we have found that if the babies are less than about 2 weeks old, we haven't had much luck getting them to survive. This is a terrible drain on the people who are caring for the babies. Can you imagine what it's like to have tried so hard only to have these babies die in your hands one after another?
Not to mention the financial side, the constant draw on the resources for vet care. We are a nonprofit with a guaranteed income of $8,500 a month, and it costs $20,000 a month to keep the doors open. And, that's because of the many animals who have a safe place there until they find a home, no matter how long it takes.
Ms. O'Neil made it sound as though we just kill without remorse. This is where she is most wrong. I would like to personally invite her to walk a mile in the shoes of the person who she so willingly trashed. I think she would find that they are far from "very cold."
If Ms. O'Neil would like to really make a difference, in my opinion she would better serve the cause by signing up to foster, or many of the other options that help to make animal rescue successful -- not by standing in her comfort zone, slinging mud on a subject she knows nothing about.
Lisa Boyle, Payson Humane Society board member