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Greenhill Humane Responds to Allegations

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EUGENE, Ore. — A local animal advocacy group says Greenhill Humane Society isn’t doing right by its wards.

Wednesday night, we spoke with No Kill Lane County regarding its members concerns about the shelter’s policies and procedures.

The staff at the Greenhill Humane Society said they’re very aware of the allegations made against them by No Kill Lane County. While that organization says these allegations are pure fact, Greenhill representatives say otherwise.

The shelter says if you look at the numbers, you can tell there’s not much truth to its recent title of “kill shelter”. In July, when it first took over Lane County Animal Services, it had a 96 percent live-release rate for cats and 98 percent for dogs. The remaining animals did have to be put down or died in care due to serious medical issues.

Staff members say that many who support the no-kill campaign would consider anything greater than 90 percent as acceptable, and they say the accusations they’re facing are hurtful.

“It’s disappointing to have an organization that shares our commitment to providing good care for animals and doing what’s best for animals bring up allegations that’s misleading or in a way that doesn’t contain all the facts,” said Jaclyn Semple, Assistant Director.

In regard to No Kill Lane County’s demands for records, staff members say their regular detailed reports to the county are available for public request.

Greenhill representatives say they’re now concerned that the negative information circulating about them could really hurt the animals. If people stop volunteering or donating money needed, it could really affect their ability to provide the best care they can.

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  1. Tamara Barnes says:

    Greenhill’s “detailed” reports are meaningless. You can make a report look anyway you want. Greenhill’s stats are not trustworthy. What community members have asked for and not received is copies of medical files for animals that were killed and should not have been. The little dog, Oakly is perfect example. Greenhill’s vet had him marked for death, withheld treatment for 10 days, because she didn’t want to “waste” money on him until the community got involved and made Greenhill do the right thing.

    In the advisory committee meeting on August 13, Director Cary Lieberman said of Oakly that he would need his foot amputated, ear and eye surgery. None of those things are true. Thankfully Oakly is now with Senior Dog Rescue of Oregon, and is comfortably living out his days with love. Why would anyone trust what Greenhill says about any animal?

    Greenhill’s vet Dr. Schroder killed the cat Mister who was diagnosed with FIV/Felv but not showing signs of either disease. The crime in this is that Mister had a hospice home waiting for him so he could live what time he had left with comfort and love. This is just two of many despicable acts that happen behind closed doors, away from the pubic and volunteers.

    Tell me again why we would trust Greenhill? If Greenhill is so concerned about the truth about what they do “circulating” they shouldn’t be doing these things in the first place. The community has a right to know!

    http://www.NoKillLaneCounty.org

    1. Tamara Barnes says:

      A nonprofit with nothing to hide, hides nothing. Why does Greenhill hide behind being a nonproft and will not release any of its records when asked?

      At the Advisory Committee meeting on August 13, Greenhill’s Lieberman stated that there were over 900 volunteer hours in July; 500 some for dog walking. A volunteer (who is also an attorney) was there every day in July and soundly refuted that number. Dogs are going 17 hours without a potty break. This is still happening in August. Tell me again why we should trust Greenhill’s reports?

      What No Kill Lane County wants is true No Kill leadership at Greenhill. The management currently there is not it. It takes more than 90%+ save rate to be No Kill. If you are not No Kill, you are a kill shelter. No kill facilities are transparent and accountable, Greenhill is not.

      No Kill Lane County is in no way critical of staff or volunteers, just management. We want a safe and healthy environment for staff, volunteers and the animals.

    2. Nick says:

      With so many unwanted animals needing good homes, why are we focusing on sick, or potentially sick animals?

      A rescue society should be run as a triage situation. Is the animal healthy? Get them ready for adoption. Not healthy? Are there reasonable steps (not lifelong medical treatment) to correct the issue? If the answer is no, isn’t it our job to make room for the ones we can return to a natural life.

      Just because you can keep an animal alive doesn’t mean you should. Putting the money into programs such as fix and release, and low cost veterinary services to help the temporarily afflicted get back to health should be more of a focus.

      We recently adopted a cat from Greenhill. Before that, we went to every animal rescue in town. Greenhill was the only reasonable spot in town. I dealt with sick cats, and cats with so many issues they were unadoptable. Do we really think daily health regimens of pills, injections, salves, and regular diagnostic tests are necessary?

      You can say I am heartless, or cruel, and you would be jumping into the same flawed logic the company making these claims against Greenhill is.

      Give this town a safe place to find HEALHY pets. Let Greenhill do their job.

      No kill is like socialism. A great theory, that makes a horrible practice.

  2. Kirk Bissell says:

    Greenhill will you please answer the following questions
    1-What organisation proposing to be for the good of animals kills an animal who is not suffering and has a home to go to?
    2-What kind of organisation employs such a person that would kill this animal
    3-What kind of management structure has this organization in place that would allow this to happen? I await your answer but not holding my breath !!!!!

  3. Scott says:

    As an active volunteer at GreenhillI support the views and ideals greenhill runs their shelter by.I started volunteering before the LCAS take over and chose greenhill because its views and ideals were very similar to my own. I think the No Kill people do have some views but it is like the staff member in the video interviewed said, ” (No Kill Lane County does) it in a way that is miss leading or does not contain all the facts”. I think it is very interesting the another poster comments about hours recorded, but the volunteers sign in electronically, I am sure the director went on the computer program and that is what it told him. I have accidentally forgotten to sign out before I am sure I am not the only one.
    If that person said they were there everyday for that month 31 days+8 hours (1st ave is open 10-6) would equal 248 hours, roughly half what the director reported, done by 1 person. That would also be the only way for the person who refuted the Directors numbers to know unless they to had access to the program that logs volunteer hours.
    My additions above must be fact as that is how the No Kill Lane county qualify their “facts”, they take one tiny word and blow it out of proportion, or dont include every truth or backstory.

  4. Nancy Yamin says:

    Scott- where do the First Avenue Shelter volunteers sign in electronically? I thought that went away on July 1st and they are now signing in on sheets of paper which are whisked away weekly by Kristi C. I would love to see these hours, then we can verify them, and then the whole issue about the hours can disappear and we can get on to the subject of SAVING ALL ADOPTABLE AND TREATABLE ANIMALS. And whether one agrees with that mandate or not, is really not up for discussion as the CONTRACT that Greenhill signed says they agree to follow that protocol. Why any Humane Society would opt to put to death an animal that is not suffering and has a home waiting for them, is really at the core of the issue. Scott, can you please show me how you came up with your “facts” about the sign in proceedures at the First Avenue Shelter?? Then we can have a discussion about the “facts”. Thanks!!

  5. Tamara Barnes says:

    Scott, First Avenue volunteers sign in on a paper log, not the computer. No Kill Lane County does indeed have the facts, please read here: http://www.NoKillLaneCounty.org

    The volunteer, a former attorney, who vocally disputed the 512 hours Lieberman stated, was at the meeting to beg him, for the sake of the dogs, to facilitate the return of the former LCAS volunteers as many dogs are going 17 hours with no break from the kennel. She also stated that the dog walking white board indicated that some dogs had not been out of their kennel since the previous morning when she had walked them! She was at the LCAS facility four hours per day on all the days LCAS was open in July, or 88 hours.

    Atrocities do occur behind closed doors at Greenhill. No Kill is about making a safe and healthy work environment for the animals, staff and volunteers.

  6. Nancy Yamin says:

    I think the reality of the situation speaks for itself. It can be easily seen by anyone who wants to form an opinion for themselves. I ask you to please go visit the First Avenue Shelter any day, any time and ask the staff as many questions as you need to until you are convinced of the situation, either way. Take an XL Kong with you to donate while you are there and ask what you can do to help. That is what I do! Nobody who has a solid opinion on the topic is going to change their mind by what they read here or see on TV. Go see for yourself, then tell me what you think. How many dogs had a potty break that morning? How many had ANY human interaction (the contract calls for 40 minutes per day), what are they doing about the dogs behind the curtain- the ones who need EXTRA time each day because they are usually large, young dogs going stir crazy in the kennel. I ask you to see if you think there is enough staff there? Enough volunteers? Are the animals clean? Are the kennels clean? Is there someone to ask about the individual dogs, their personalities, do they have time to let you visit with one that you might be thinking about adopting? Have they been assessed? Can you see those results and the dog walkers opinions of the dogs? I know they are busy getting it together after the takeover, but the basic needs of the animals needs to come first, and if those cannot be met then more staff (even if it is temporary) needs to be hired. The animals cannot wait to have their needs met until after the place has been cleaned up and organized. After the basic needs of the animals are being met, we can move on to the topic of why they are not utilizing the available fosters and rescues, why the trainers are not developing programs for the dogs who need help to become adoptable, why they are recruiting volunteers to clean kennels and litter boxes instead of to walk the dogs, etc. I look forward to hearing from you all and I will be especially happy if I am wrong!

  7. vickie says:

    Dear Greenhill PR Person,
    Here is me rolling my eyes ^^ You have now used the same standard defense that every other Shelter/Nonprofit that is doing a substandard job uses. Now that you got that out of your system. How about actually looking at what is broken in your system. Try fixing it before you hurt and kill any more animals hmm? When your public speaks listen. You will get more accomplished if you do. The public wants change. Then change it.

    You are a nonprofit aren’t you? Can you really afford to continue to pissing off your paying donors? Try working with them. Change isn’t that scary.

  8. Christina says:

    Did BP want to take responsibility for the damage to wildlife from the oil spill? Did big bankers on Wall Street want to take responsibility for the collapse of our economy?? Does Monsanto want to take responsibility for the havoc their GMO crops and pesticides are reeking on our environment and personal health? Of course not!!! Every single above mentioned company has put out statements to the effect that their practices are safe and they have our best interest in mind, but ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS.

    I mean honestly, think back to when you were a kid, playing football in the house and broke your mom’s flower vase, did you immediately fess up when asked or did you point the finger at someone else first? It’s human nature to deny doing something you know is wrong. Do you really expect Greenhill to say “Yep, we euthanize animals unnecessarily. It’s cheaper than keeping them alive.”??? It is so easy to say that doing what’s best for the animals is your first priority, it’s a lot harder to follow those words up with actions that say the same. Greenhill’s statements/interviews/videos/reports DO NOT match their actions.

    Greenhill has a lot to gain by keeping up their public image and therefore denying truthful claims of their mistreatment of animals. What do the people from No Kill Lane County or volunteers or concerned citizens have to gain by “making up” these allegations? Absolutely nothing! It’s not like we’re all bored and decided to pull these stories out of our asses. REALLY ASK YOURSELF… WHO BENEFITS FROM KEEPING THIS KIND OF INFORMATION UNDER WRAPS?!

  9. Michael Freimund says:

    I am extremely concerned about the fact that Greenhill is not being open, regarding their procedures. The mayor contacted me after I posted my concerns about the questionable treatment, given to the animals by Greenhill. She said, “To my knowledge there have been no euthanasia’ at all for these contracted services” (Since the transition on July 1st). I gave her specific animals’ that were indeed killed, obtained from employees’/volunteers’ working at both facilities. I suggested since Greenhill is now considered a public agency (they ARE receiving YOUR tax dollars), all their internal documents are subject to Oregon open records law. She needed to go to either facility unannounced, and check for herself. She responded back that in the opinion of the city attorney, the contract with the city does not make them a public entity. That wasn’t my ISSUE! She chose to defend the city’s disclosure position and ignore the fact that Greenhill is killing adoptable pets. I guess bike paths are a higher priority for Eugene. Fact is; pets are being killed under the supervision of Cary Lieberman and Jaclyn Semple, performed by Gail Schroder. They are grossly understaffed, causing pets to remain caged for hours on end, without potty breaks, or human interaction. They are not being worked with to transform them back to the lovable pets they were, before they were allowed to slowly go kennel crazy. I thought that was the service humane societies provided. Am I wrong? How about some investigative reporting, KEZI9?

  10. Rhonda says:

    I volunteered for LCAS and I volunteer for the 1st Ave shelter. My concern is the staff shortage at the 1st Ave shelter. Dogs are not getting enough pottie breaks or exercise on certain days of the week because it is physically impossible for the limited staff to handle it. I have a friend who volunteers at Greenhill, and she said they are so OVERSTAFFED with employees and volunteers that she had nothing to do on the days she volunteered. Why don’t they send more of those staff and volunteers over to the 1st Ave shelter on the days where the need is greater? Spend a few hours at the 1st Ave shelter and it is painfully obvious that they are seriously short staffed. The animals are going crazy in their kennels because they are not getting enough time outside. It’s inhumane.

  11. Tamara Barnes says:

    Fact is; at Greenhill Humane Society, pets are being killed under the supervision of Cary Lieberman and Jaclyn Semple, performed by Gail Schroder. Please read, sign and share our petition.
    http://www.change.org/petitions/replace-director-and-vet-with-compassionate-no-kill-management

  12. Kathryn Terhune Cotton says:

    1) I don’t believe Greenhill is being transparent with their records

    2) I know from personal experience how Greenhill does cherry-pick animals for adoption
    a – I was assisting an acquaintance re-home their Collie. I was contacted by a woman at Greenhill who was interested in obtaining the Collie for their facilities!! Really? Soliciting animals?
    b – Greenhill euthanized any neonates brought into the facility (animals must be able to eat solid food on their own. Animals younger than 3-weeks of age who are completely dependent on a bottle are not accepted, or if brought in, will be killed.
    c- Animals too shy, i.e. cats that hide from people will be euthanized. Not even totally feral cats, just cats that are very shy and can’t be easily approached.
    d- Any dog showing any level of food aggression – even pups less than a year old, who can easily be retrained.

    And I’d love to hear from Cary Lieberman on his salary, reputed to be in the six-figures. Why is anyone at a humane society making so much when they can’t afford reasonable vet care for the animals at the shelter??

    What steps is Greenhill taking to promote adoptions? Are they open extended hours when most people are able to visit the shelter. No. Are they doing off-site adoption events. Not that I’m aware of.

    Why are they so vehemently opposed to the “No Kill” policy? Killing the animals is easier, cheaper and the status quot I suppose. But is this the function of a ‘humane society’? I think not! And I’m not alone.

    1. Rick Nelson says:

      “What steps is Greenhill taking to promote adoptions? Are they open extended hours when most people are able to visit the shelter. No. ”

      Greenhill is open Saturday and Sunday 11 am to 6 pm.

      “Animals younger than 3-weeks of age who are completely dependent on a bottle are not accepted”.

      Greenhill is looking for Foster Homes for “bottle babies”. They would be glad to accept your help.

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