Eddie Swartz - California
Eddie has just been released from the Veterinary School and Research Facility at Washington State University (WSU) in Pullman, Washington. The combination of unfortunate timing (the WSU van was due in the next day and needed to be filled) and a money motivated shelter director resulted in Eddie immediately being assigned a vet school # and sequestered to be sent away the day after he was turned in. Even though two rescue groups and one private citizen came to the shelter the morning after he was turned in to adopt him (and actually were allowed to meet and evaluate Eddie), the shelter would not take Eddie off of the WSU list.
A quiet vigil, phone calls to WSU, and constant shelter checks hoping for his return followed. After two weeks, pressure was stepped up on WSU through contact made by those with connections to the facility. We were assured Eddie was not designated for the "terminal surgery" that part of his group would be and that he would eventually be returned. Thank goodness, four weeks into the process, Eddie was returned.
Even though we were assured full documentation of vaccinations, labs and medical procedures would be provided, only microchip paperwork was provided. Eddie will have to go through more "vetting" this week determine his medical status.
Thirteen month old Eddie is now safe and happy. Hopefully, he can eventually forget everything he was forced to endure. It is hard to think of all of the shelter dogs that do not have the love and support of a rescue group behind them that find themselves at the WSU facility. The shelter dogs that are lucky enough to make it back from WSU unfortunately are usually immediately euthanized as they arrive in a large group and the shelter is unable to make room for so many dogs at once.
We hope Eddie's story will somehow help to change the "old school" idea of WSU that live dogs are necessary to train students. We hope his story will bring the plight of shelter dogs that end up at WSU to the attention of the communities where their local shelter has contracted with WSU for their shelter dogs. (Spokane County recently refused to work with WSU due to public pressure and outrage.) We hope that other counties will do the same.
Northwest Airedale Rescue Coordinator
Photo is a past CoverDale: In exchange for a $25 donation to National Airedale Rescue, Inc., your favorite picture of a rehomed Airedale will be featured on the front page of the ATCA Rescue & Adoption Committee website for one week.