Rescue Watchdogs(TM)

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The Stories

Name withheld on request

My husband and I visited Gentle Giants Rescue with the intention of adopting an adult male Great Dane late summer, 2005 (we did not adopt a dog).  This was after reviewing their web-site and filling out an application – we were accepted.  I have attached the e-mails we received from the ‘Rescue’ Operation after a phone call from Burt Ward.

Please note that we should have been suspected something weird was going on when it was requested that we bring $400.00 cash with us and be prepared to pay more – up to $950.00 total.  Also, red flags should have gone up when they said it is a requirement that we feed any dog that we adopted, their specially formulated food for the life of the dog.  They said that the specially formulated food is the ONLY food that they feed the dogs – however, the only food that we saw there were bags of Pedigree dog food (which can be purchased in just about any grocery story).  Note we feed our dogs Natural Balance and Champaine Freeze Dried meat dog food.

Upon arriving at Gentle Giants Rescue we found that of the 6 male Great Danes that were shown to us were:

1. Dull and dopey
2. Lethargic
3. Emaciated
4. Nails were not trimmed
5. Ears were full of mites!
6. More than half of the dogs needed surgical attention (not including spay or neutering)
7. A number of the dogs WERE NOT spayed or neutered (a concern – since they are housed together – unwanted litters a strong possibility)

Another major concern to us was that the Ward’s said that the dogs were fed out of troughs that were opened for 10 minutes at a time 5 or 6 times a day.  The Ward’s have a number of dogs that are theirs (these dogs were large/healthy/clean) and they were fed with the rescue dogs.  Basically, in our opinion, you get survival of the fittest – the smaller/weaker dogs that need nourishment were not getting it. 

Next, the Wards said and note in their web site that they have a ‘hospital’ on site and they do an average of 8 surgeries a day!  Are they licensed by the California Vet. Assoc. to do so?  What are the regulations in Norco about having a vet surgical facility, who is the vet that is licensed to operate in it and monitoring it for cleanliness?  There must be some laws covering this.

We are not in the vet field or associated with any vet hospital or rescue organization/shelter and these opinions are ours only.  We just like animals and thought that we would like to rescue one. 

Lastly, in our opinion, this is a situation that I think the Wards went into the rescue field with good intentions but have gotten in over their heads – and may have a ‘hoarding’ problem.  As a result they are not capable of caring for these dogs!  This operation should be shut down.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or comments.

Sincerely,

Name withheld on request


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