A serious case of animal neglect, abandonment and cruelty exists at a two family residence in Chestertown, NY. There is a puppy at risk that needs to be removed from the residence and an issue of cat hoarding and neglect that must be addressed. The numerous cats constitute a health hazard.
Failure to vaccinate cats for rabies is a violation with fine up to $200 per cat and these individuals are harboring well over 20 unvaccinated cats. Proper shelter is not being provided nor is proper sustenance. They do not provide them with ANY medical care and have failed to get any of them spayed or neutered which is why they continue to multiply and are inbred, creating an unhealthy situation.
Several of the cats have been seriously injured. Some of the cats are obviously malnourished and sick, some have open wounds and sores. Some cats have died and there is a serious question of how and where the carcasses are being disposed.
On New Years weekend, one of the individual’s inside “pet” cats became seriously ill. None of the vets were open because of the holiday weekend and this individual refused to take her pet to the Emergency Clinic which is about 40 minutes away. Instead, she tried to self-diagnose, claiming it might be worms. She bought some over the counter wormer and stuck the ill cat in a crate. The cat continued to get worse. She did nothing. She went out partying on New Year’s Eve and left the cat to die. The next morning it was dead in the crate. The poor thing never had a chance. It likely was not properly disposed of as required by law.
This individual has also killed kittens in a dryer, essentially burning them to death. There are allegations that dead kittens and cats are disposed of in the swamp behind their house after failing to get any of them medical care. Her son and his friends torture and taunt the cats by throwing apples at them and shooting at them with high powered squirt guns.
On at least one occasion, one of the suspects took at least one of the cats over five miles away and dropped it because she “didn’t like it”. She was greatly chagrined when the cat found its way back. At least six of the cats, including some little kittens, were killed last winter by coyotes or fishers right in the hamlet of Chestertown because the poor animals didn’t have adequate shelter.
The alleged abuse and neglect was reported to the Town of Chester Town Board (Warren County, NY) in early February but they failed to act as a local board of health. Instead, the town attorney directed the animal control officer to file an abuse complaint against the individual with law enforcement.
Such was done on Feb. 21, 2012 with the Warren County Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff’s office apparently did nothing. The courts have held that police agencies are MANDATED to enforce animal cruelty laws, it is not discretionary. The police apparently did not forward the complaint to the SPCA of Upstate New York at Queensbury for investigation as is protocol. When the ASPCA filed a complaint against the individual with the State Police, the sheriff’s department quickly interceded and quashed the complaint. The ACO filed several complaints directly with the SPCA. The SPCA failed to acknowledge the complaints or respond to them. They have done absolutely nothing. The cats continue to be abused and neglected, denied medical care. Now some of the cats are disappearing. Numerous complaints have been filed about the SPCA and its director Cathy Cloutier. Individuals who try to surrender cats to the SPCA are told that they have to pay to do so and that the animals have to be spayed/neutered and vaccinated too before they will place them on a weeks’ long waiting list----but they won’t take the cats, leaving them homeless and unassisted. They have nowhere to go and no one to take care of them because these individuals have abandoned them.
The SPCA, which promotes itself as the largest no-kill animal shelter north of New York City, proclaims that its been “helping homeless and needy pets in the our community for over 50 years” but yet it has refused to take in five homeless cats that are in immediate need of assistance, that have no place to go. They are cats that were kittens of the Chestertown individual’s mother cat, kittens/cats which were abandoned by the individual in question. Such is neglect and abandonment---animal cruelty that MUST be addressed by the SPCA.
The SPCA seems to be focused totally on money---not on helping animals.They go into the south and get puppies at the high kill shelter, at no cost to them, and bring them north and sell them for $300 each.
For fiscal year 2010, on their 990 Form filed with the IRS, the SPCA reported revenues of $561,120 with salaries of $234,425 including an annual salary to Cloutier of $60,679.
The reported a total fund balance of $73,562, not bad for a non-profit organization. Asked to describe the organization’s mission, the SPCA told the IRS it was to prevent cruelty to animals. They state that they take in unwanted animals and shelter these animals until adoption. The SPCA also responds to animal cruelty complaints. To date, they have done neither in the case of the Chestertown situation.
The shelter for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) of Upstate New York Inc. is located at 588 Queensbury Ave., Queensbury, NY (Warren County), phone 518-798-3500, email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Their website says that they are dedicated to the protection and care of animals. Their mission statement says that they are committed to the prevention of torture or cruelty (includes every act, omission, or neglect, whereby unjustifiable physical pain, suffering, or death is caused or permitted), and the protection of all animals, (includes every living creature, except a human being), and Article 26 Agriculture & Markets Law Sections number 350; to promote the health and welfare of animals; responsible pet ownership, increasing awareness of the interdependence between humans and animals through education; to make available products and services that benefit the general well being of animals; and the care, protection and respect for all living in their environment.
Wikipedia defines an animal shelter as a facility that houses homeless, lost or abandoned animals, primarily a large variety of dogs and cats. The goal of a modern animal shelter is to provide a safe and caring environment until the animal is either reclaimed by its owner, placed in a new home or placed with another organization for adoption.
As an animal shelter, the SPCA is mandated and obligated to address the abuse issue which exists in Chestertown, NY and to protect and care for homeless or neglected and abused animals. The SPCA is obligated to stop the maltreatment of animals. There are many forms of animal cruelty, not just physically hurting an animal. Animal cruelty can also be in the form of malnutrition when animal owners don’t feed their pets properly or if they abandon animals and their offspring. Generally, what causes injury and suffering to an animal can be considered animal cruelty.
We, the undersigned, demand that the SPCA immediately conduct an investigation of any and all allegations of animal neglect and abuse in Warren County and in particular in the Chestertown situation and to take action against the individuals and rescue the puppy whose safety and welfare is at imminent risk.
We implore the SPCA and Cathy Cloutier to do their job, to fulfill their mission in preventing cruelty and neglect, to enforce Article 26 of the A&M Law and to provide care for the homeless and neglected cats. Any costs associated with such neglected costs should be assessed to the individual responsible, who has neglected and abandoned these cats, failed to provide them with medical care and failed to have them spayed and neutered.
If a man aspires towards a righteous life, his first act of abstinence is from injury to animals." --Albert Einstein
The greatness of a nation and it's moral progress can be judged by the way it's animals are treated. --Mahatma Gandi
All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. --Edmund Burke
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. --Margaret Mead
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