Earlier this year quite a dust cloud was kicked up about a pest control company that had unintentionally killed a squirrel. The New Jersey pest control firm ‘Critter Ridder’ was hired to catch a specific squirrel that had been plaguing the roof tops and had become a nuisance. They did their job quite well trapping the rodent alive but did not check the trap within the allotted 24 hour time period and the squirrel died from heat exhaustion. An error in communication according to Ms. Kathleen Buck who owns the pest control company.
Charges were quickly made and Buck now faced 4 counts of animal cruelty including one of not providing food or water in the trap. The New Jersey SPCA was outraged and rather strong in their position and seemingly unwilling to make any concessions on the case. Chief Victor “Buddy” Amato is the Chief Humane Law Enforcement Officer was quoted.
“No one returned to check the trap, he said, and a squirrel caught sometime that day “baked to death” by 5 p.m. It just cooked to death on the hot roof.”
While ordinarily I applaud any such efforts to protect wildlife or any being from cruel or unusual harm this case seemed hardly worth the outrage. The link above gives more details and you can decide for yourself and even join the online poll whether you think this was fair or not.
What galls me the most is however the sheer hypocrisy of the SPCA and apparent willingness to find forgiveness somewhere in their zealous hearts when they themselves inflict undue harm on an animal they are sworn to protect.
Robin Starr, the CEO of the Richmond Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals apparently has found the rare grace they occasionally bestow. Starr left her 16 year old blind and deaf dog in her car on August 19th and the animal shared the same fate as the squirrel.
By all indications this seemed to be an accident but so was the death of the squirrel according to reports. The difference however is that the SPCA immediately spoke out in defense of Ms. Starr and charges don’t seem likely while Ms. kathleen Buck owner of Critter Ridder was found guilty and had to pay a fine of $1000.00.
Where is “Buddy’ Amato or his colleagues? I don’t hear them speaking out or levying charges in defense of this dog. Perhaps Mr. Amato said it best but the entire organization needs to be reminded of just how they do it in New Jersey.
The Monmouth County SPCA has a long history of protecting animals from abuse. We are there to help those who cannot speak for themselves. Chief Victor “Buddy” Amato is our Chief Humane Law Enforcement Officer. Buddy is a retired police officer who brings a wealth of law enforcement experience and a lifelong dedication to animal welfare. He is supported by a group of dedicated staff and volunteers who come from many different backgrounds and all are dedicated to our mission of preventing cruelty to animals. Our volunteers receive extensive training in Title IV law, educating the public, identifying animal cruelty, prosecuting animal cruelty cases and court room procedure.