ASPCA Responds to Death of Richmond SPCA CEO's Dog

August 26, 2009

NEW YORK– The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) issued a statement from President and CEO Ed Sayres prompted by the recent death of the Richmond SPCA CEO's dog:

"The ASPCA was deeply saddened to learn of the tragic death of Louie, Richmond SPCA CEO Robin Starr's beloved dog, who died after accidentally being left in Ms. Starr's car for several hours on a hot summer day. The ASPCA truly believes that this incident was a horrible and unfortunate accident.

"Robin has dedicated her professional life to saving animals' lives.  An outspoken advocate for the prevention of animal cruelty, Robin has worked diligently with her staff for many years to increase the shelter's adoptions and decrease euthanasia since becoming a no-kill facility – a remarkable achievement for the animals at-risk in the Richmond area and a model for the entire nation. If a terrible tragedy like this could happen to someone like Robin, then it can truly happen to anyone. 

"Certainly, the grief that Robin and her family must be going through right now is profound. Anytime you lose a pet, it's tantamount to losing a member of the family – but it is hard to imagine the pain that comes with losing a pet in such a tragic way.

"While some might unfortunately call for Robin's resignation as a result of this horrible accident, it is imperative that we focus on the thousands of animals' lives that she has saved through her work with the Richmond SPCA. Louie's death serves as a tragic lesson – animals should never be left alone in a parked vehicle, and pet parents must stay vigilant when it comes to their pets' safety."