Cagney and Lacy before receiving treatment at the ASPCA Animal Hospital
Who could starve two puppies? Apparently, Gillian Irving could. On April 20, ASPCA Humane Law Enforcement (HLE) Agent Ann Kelly arrested the 27-year-old Bronx woman for allegedly neglecting and starving her two seven-month-old Pit Bulls, Cagney and Lacey.
It was last February when HLE Agents first responded to a complaint that two skinny dogs were living inside Irving’s Bronx apartment. Upon arrival, Agents seized the two emaciated dogs and transported them to the ASPCA Animal Hospital for life-saving treatment. ASPCA veterinarians determined Cagney and Lacey had been starved—weighing only 16.4 and 15.2 pounds.
After receiving treatment, Cagney now weighs 27.1 pounds and Lacey weighs 26.9 pounds—a 65 and 77 percent increase, respectively. Both dogs are continuing their recovering at the hospital and will eventually be made available for adoption.
As a result of her actions, Irving was charged with two counts of misdemeanor animal cruelty. If convicted, she faces up to two years in jail and/or a $2,000 fine. Irving is due in Bronx Criminal Court on August 22.
Take Action! We need you on our side! If you suspect an animal may be the victim of neglect or abuse, please report it. Visit our Report Cruelty FAQ to learn how to report cruelty in your neighborhood. And consider becoming an ASPCA Guardian—together we can fight animal cruelty across the country.
Shame on Skechers: The mega-shoe company recently filmed its new Super Bowl ad at an Arizona Greyhound track. The soon-to-be-released ad features a small French Bulldog wearing Skechers sneakers and competing against Greyhounds at Tucson Greyhound Park. The small dog wins.
Unfortunately, we know the same cannot be said for racing Greyhounds. Just last month, GREY2K USA, with funding from the ASPCA, released a report detailing the horrific conditions of race dogs in Florida. Dogs are confined in small cages for 20 hours or more a day, often wearing muzzles; they are bred excessively in the quest for good runners, with the “excess” puppies killed or otherwise discarded; and they regularly endure serious and fatal injuries. You can access a copy of the report here [PDF].
Take Action! Animal lovers across the nation are demanding Skechers pull the ad or suffer a major boycott of the company. To date, nearly 50,000 advocates have already signed a petition voicing this demand. For more information and to add your name to the petition, please visit ASPCA partner organization GREY2K USA.
Every year, thousands of young and healthy Greyhounds are euthanized because they are no longer deemed worthy racers. ASPCA staffer Lauren discusses adopting her Greyhound rescue, Lewis.
When my fiancé, Grant, and I began looking for a dog, we assumed that we would need to narrow our search to smaller breeds because of our NYC lifestyle. Having both grown up in the country, we were partial to larger breeds. On a whim, I searched for large-breed dogs that are suitable for apartment living. Much to our surprise, Greyhounds were the most recommended! It was my understanding that these dogs required extensive exercise, but as it turns out they have two speeds—45mph and sleeping.
The Search Begins For the next three weeks, Grant and I did nothing but research everything Greyhound related! The more we learned, the more we fell in love with the breed. We eventually found a rescue group that served NYC and got in touch with a wonderful volunteer named Linda. Two weeks later, she visited our apartment with a spotted, male Greyhound who had recently retired from the industry. While this gentle giant had some difficulty climbing the stairs to our apartment, once inside he had no problem exploring every inch—all 400 square feet!
Our Boy When Linda left that day, Grant and I looked at each other and without words knew we had found our dog. We called Linda the next day and arranged to pick him up. Being an avid (obsessive) Formula 1 fan, Grant decided to name our new dog Lewis after Lewis Hamilton, the race car driver. Considering his retired profession, I found it quite fitting. When we got Lewis home, he quickly conquered the stairs and felt right at home in our modest Upper East Side apartment.
Today, Lewis is the absolute love of our lives. Because of his size and gentle nature, he has also become a bit of a celebrity in our neighborhood—working his way into the hearts of everyone he meets.
A video released this week by Greyhound advocacy group Grey2K USA shows horrifying injuries incurred at the Tri-State Racetrack in Cross Lanes, West Virginia—highlighting the suffering of racing dogs across the United States.
“According to newly obtained state records, at least 3,208 greyhound injuries have been reported at this track since 2005, and nearly 200 dogs have died. Further, it’s likely that the actual number of injuries is even higher, as the state still refuses to produce several months of records,” Grey2K said in an email to supporters.
Grey2K Executive Director Carey Theil told West Virginia’s Charleston Daily Mail that "in terms of the raw number of injuries, this is the largest we have seen for a single track by far."
Though ASPCA racing specialist Ann Church called Tri-State Racetrack’s injury record “appalling,” she emphasized that the injuries were not at all uncommon. “This is what happens at all Greyhound racing tracks, and that is why we are making the end of racing a priority within the ASPCA.”
This past weekend, ASPCA Humane Law Enforcement Agents arrested three suspects in two separate animal cruelty incidents. On February 12, Bronx resident Eugene Elvin, 32, was arrested by ASPCA Special Agent Pete Rivas for allegedly neglecting and starving a two-year-old female Pit Bull. The initial investigation began on December 17, when Agents responded to a report of an emaciated pit bull at the suspect’s residence.
“The dog was extremely emaciated, and her water bowl had completely frozen over due to the freezing temperatures,” says Stacy Wolf, Vice President and Chief Legal Counsel for Humane Law Enforcement.
Elvin agreed to sign the dog over to the ASPCA, and she was immediately transported to the ASPCA Animal Hospital for evaluation and treatment. Upon examination, veterinarians determined that the dog weighed a mere 29.8 pounds—the result of being starved.
Elvin has been charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty. If convicted, he faces up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Deuce’s intake photo, he is currently on the road to recovery at the ASPCA Animal Hospital.
Diamond’s intake photo, she is currently recuperating at the ASPCA Animal Hospital.
In a separate incident, Queens siblings Leroy and Nikira Shepard were arrested on February 11 for allegedly neglecting and starving their two Pit Bulls. Both dogs, a nine-month-old, Deuce and two-year-old Diamond, appeared emaciated to ASPCA Special Agent Deborah Ryan, who began the initial investigation after a complaint was filed. Upon further investigation, it was determined that both dogs had been starved.
Leroy Shepard, 18, and Nikira Shepard, 20, were each charged with two counts of misdemeanor animal cruelty. If convicted, they each face up to two years in jail and a $2,000 fine.
"All three of these dogs suffered from extreme neglect and could have easily died if we did not receive tips from concerned citizens," says Wolf. “We are happy to report that they are all on the road to recovery at the ASPCA.”
Take Action! We need you on our side! If you suspect an animal may be the victim of neglect or abuse, please report it. Visit our Report Cruelty FAQ to learn how to report cruelty in your neighborhood.
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