San Francisco, CA: Yesterday, when millions of people were enjoying the San Francisco 49'ers at the Superdome, the director at the city's animal shelter was on Facebook. The American Pit Bull Examiner has been alerted Rebecca Katz, director of San Francisco Animal Control joined splinter Facebook group, ''Help save Charlie, the REAL deal.' Furthermore, the highly paid director posted public statements along with the other posters with pointed and untrue jabs at private citizens.
The American Pit Bull Examiner column reports the truth in an effort to try and expose animals in distress and to help other animal lovers try and save the many currently being killed. Yesterday's article "What is happening to the missing pit bulls in San Francisco" was reprinted on this group's Facebook page. The excerpts were followed by some disparaging remarks from Katz, who is on the city of San Francisco payroll and some of the other posters who have posted inflammatory and libelous remarks.
Katz, who reportedly will not return former owner David Gizzarelli's calls as deemed by the court, has posted several digs at Gizzarelli, referred to as 'DG.'
"And we are so successful because we work as a community rather than by attacking each other which is so disruptive (of course, that is a dig at DG). Sometimes, however, certain people go to the a weird place and cannot continue to work with us (CM."
'CM' is very obviously in reference to myself, Cindy Marabito in an attempt to compromise our rescue work ethic.
These sorts of remarks from a city department head are inexcusable, but when placed in an arena of volatile opinions such as the 'REAL deal' page, the situation becomes as dangerous as the town sheriff leading a lynch mob down main street.
In response to Katz's posts and yesterday's APBE article on pit bull deaths at SFACC, posters responded vehemently:
"Rebecca, it's mind boggling to see the number of people claiming you're all these critter serial killers hell bent on destroying everything that comes through your doors. Looking at your kill rate compared to even our LA and Kern county shelters makes me wonder why CM is so hellbent against you guys. She should visit Lancaster..."
"That woman's a bigger crack pot than the prior owner, I do believe. People who're blinded by personal agenda are some of the most destructive TO their causes...smh."
"… material was removed from Examiner.com. Pimentel said the Examiner has "a less-strict standard for accuracy and attribution in stories that appear on the Web" than for publications in print"."
"I'm repeating it here for everyone to see. I'm so sorry that you've been bothered by so many people who don't understand what's really going on and that the work you do is subject to these distractions. "
And particularly frightening, "Rebecca - I just wanted to thank you for all you do and I really hope that the crazies back off soon so that you can continue doing your good work in peace!"
The facts surrounding the terrible story of what happened with Charlie have become murky and confused. The court deemed David Gizzarelli have input as to the choice in Charlie's ultimate location. However, current photographs continue to appear on the "REAL deal" page along with commentary about Charlie's progress.
Katz addresses the latest APBE article about 'missing' pit bulls at SFACC, "Thus, if an animal is no longer categorized as a stray and isn't "adoptable" then it no longer shows up on that site. That doesn't mean we're hiding anything - it means the animal has been redeemed, transferred to rescue, awaiting rescue, or, sadly, it may have been euthanized."
In a city where the word 'owner' has been legally changed to 'guardian,' those citizens should expect the highest regard for even the unwanted animals winding up at the city dog pound. However, Katz refers to the dogs as 'it.' That term is quite telling as to how Katz's shelter regards these animals.
The incident Katz refers to as a 'weird place' resulted when an angry SFACC volunteer opened a fire hose on a pit bull recovering from spay surgery the day before. When the dog was discovered in a pool of blood the next morning, she was rushed to an emergency hospital. She survived and is alive today although 5' of her intestine had to be removed.
After complaining to then SFACC director, Carl Friedman about the animal abuse, Reunion Rescue was banned from saving pit bulls at SFACC. Ann Bennet, the vet tech who saved Slappy's life was fired. The deputy director who commended the action as 'dehissing' continues to work at SFACC.
These are the actual facts which might put any animal lover into a 'weird place,' borrowing Ms. Katz' own phrase. David Gizzarelli continues to fight for Charlie's and his own rights which have been compromised. On a final note in this sad scenario, due to Charlie's situation, light is being shed on the animals dying at SFACC.
Katz offers some suggestions in her REAL deal posts about the use of Pet Harbor, the national database to track animals in any zip code. The American Pit Bull Examiner suggests Katz' words be heeded and citizens follow the goings on at SFACC. No one really knows yet what will happen with Charlie, but hopefully some of the other dogs confined in the dark stray cells at San Francisco Animal Control might not have to die.
Katz states her 'amusement' at the situation, "I'll take that amusing note as a compliment - your comments have been insightful and articulate (more than I can say for some posts on another site)!" Shelter euthanasia is not a funny subject. Making light of and disregard for the very lives Katz is paid well to care for is duly noted.
The city of San Francisco is one of the most affluent cities in the United States. This shelter could be one that sets an example for other communities, but until the director refocuses her energy on solution rather than Facebook, San Francisco's unwanted animals will continue to pay the ultimate price.
Cindy Marabito of Reunion Rescue writes the American Pit Bull Examiner stories to save lives. Every click on a story donates to the animals.
Reunion Rescue: www.reunionrescue.com
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