Saturday, April 18, 2015

Greenhill Humane Society's long established and ingrained culture of neglect

Greenhill has a long, established and ingrained culture of neglect and cover up.  Here are some instances that cover a period of years.  This testimony is from many people making public their experiences.   Greenhill's stance is that everyone that criticizes them is lying.  This, of course, is absurd.  Equally absurd is Greenhill's notion that this has been fabricated by No Kill Lane County.  Many of these people speaking out do not know each other, yet, their experiences over a period of years are the same.  Some people are willing to put their names to their testimony, other are not because of fear of Greenhill retaliation.  All have agreed to testify, in court, under oath that their experiences are the truth, and we are confident that corroborating witnesses will testify.  We have Greenhill's own medical records that prove proper care and protocol was not provided and not followed in a number of instances. 

"Last kitten season there was a starving baby kitten that was surrendered. I found her screaming in a blanket in Lab. I knew she was going to be euthanized but I couldn't stand to see her starving. It was sad enough that she was going to be killed simply because she didn't have teeth, the least we could do is feed her and not let her die hungry. After all, that would be the humane thing to do. [A Greenhill employee] told me "No, don't feed her. [a Greenhill manager] will get mad because she says if we feed them we will bond with them and then it will be hard on us when they are put to sleep."
Tasha Roberts Resignation Letter:

"Cary, Jaclyn:
Among one of the more disturbing things that happened today, I have been informed by Gail Schroder, DVM not to treat ailments on the animals that we are going to euthanize at the end of their holding period. This is unethical and against my oath as a veterinary technician to ease suffering!"
Emails to Greenhill Management from Heidy Hollister
Heidy was a whistle blower that Greenhill fired.  She filed a law suit against Greenhill for wrongful firing and prevailed.

"I have written an e-mail to (Director) Cary Lieberman and (Assistant Director) Jaclyn Semple (Rudebeck) about these issues with no response.  I am a Certified Veterinary Technician for over 30 years.  I have been a volunteer with LCAS for almost 2 years and continue to volunteer at the shelter helping Heidy* (Hollister) in the clinic.  Since the “transition", I have observed some disturbing incidents involving Dr. Schroder."
Testimony of Diane Weaver, CVT

"They did not want to get in trouble and lose their jobs, but couldn't in all good conscience sit by and watch the young dog die. I stepped in and told them to call the vet (Gail Schroder) and be sure to mention that I told them to make the call, I was happy to take the blame as my job was not at stake. They dialed the phone, waiting and praying she wouldn't answer, so that they could make the decision to take the dog to the emergency vet. But she did answer; the dog did not get any emergency care, and died that night."
Volunteer Testimony  

 "...we spent a lot of time talking to Amy Valentine about Gail Schroder.  ... Amy discussed how "shelter medicine" is different for many reasons then medicine in a private Vet's office."
Email from Greenhill Board Member Ginger Balzas

Under Oregon law there is no difference  between private practice and so-called "shelter medicine".  Veterinarian Amy Valentine should know this and stop making excuses for substandard care provided by Greenhill's vet.  Shelters are held to the same standards of care as prescribed by Oregon Statute, no exceptions.  In addition, animals that are allowed to die, aren't counted against Greenhill's live release statistics.

"As for thePyometra it's clearly written that staff said they noticed discharge,but upon the vet exam there was none. Not sure why she didn’t do some kind of vaginal swab. It only states to monitor temp over weekend and give antibiotics if signs of Pyometra.  Pretty sure staff documenting red milky vaginal discharge from an older unspayed dog is a sign of Pyometra, ....."
Former Volunteer/Adopter Speaks Out

Of course there are many more such eye witness reports, some documented by Greenhill's own medical records.   See links to Greenhill's records here:  Greenhill Medical Records

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Greenhill Board Member (Sort of) Responds to Concerns of Neglect

"So… is now I who cannot sleep at night wondering what is to happen?  Cary, if you don’t know what is happening in your shelter, it is time for you to not only acknowledge that you have a problem, but to do something about it. If you are aware and this is how you choose to operate, please stop repeating that you treat all adoptable and treatable animals, BECAUSE YOU DON’T." Testimony from Greenhill Volunteer

[Note: Under Oregon law there is no difference  between private practice and "shelter medicine". Veterinarian Amy Valentine knows this. Why is she making excuses for inadequate vet care provided by Greenhill's vet, Gail Schroder?]  Shelters are held to the same standard of care, no exceptions.

Sent in 2012
From Ginger Balzas, Board Member to concerned Volunteer

I got your email and gave it to everyone at the meeting.  The meeting went well - we spent a lot of time talking to Amy Valentine about Gail Schroder.  I think Amy is terrific - she is on the Animal Care Committee and new VP of the board.  Amy feels comfortable with Gail Schroder and overall, thinks she is doing a good job and does not feel (at all) that Gail takes any Euthanasia lightly in any way. There are many people that have to sign off on any Euthanasia - it is not just Gail's decision.  Amy discussed how "shelter medicine" is different for many reasons then medicine in a private Vet's office.  She told me that the suture packs were acceptable and in no way endangered any animals.

Everyone took your concerns seriously and I have faith that Greenhill will do a good job running LCAS if the contracts are signed.  LCAS will be run as it has been but the intention is to make it better not worse.  Greenhill remains separate from LCAS and Cary feels strongly that he will have the people with enough experience to work with the strays and other types of "bully dogs" as you put it, at LCAS.
If you would like, Amy Valentine would be happy to talk to you about any of the medical concerns you have about Greenhill.  Please be comforted by the fact that everyone on the board has a great deal of passion for saving the lives of all animals, and that includes Cary.  Cary even told me that he has had animals that he has tried to get into "Best Friends" but was turned away because they had no space.

All of us on the board will be monitoring and watching things closely.  Please do not hesitate to bring anything to our attention that you feel needs to be voiced.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Former Volunteer/Adopter Speaks Out

See Greenhill's Vet Record here:   Greenhill's Vet delays Pyometra Emergency Surgery

Veterinarians Dr. Bill Young and Dr. DuWayne Penfold sit on the Lane County Animal Services Advisory Committee.  The purpose of the committee is to supply oversight to Greenhill and their practices.  We have asked both vets to tell us what their protocol is for pyometra and an animal with a ruptured eye.

Dr. Bill Young replied to us regarding pyometra:  "On suspected pyometra, we do bloodwork, start fluids and antibiotics, and do surgery as soon as the animal is stable enough for anesthesia."

Greenhill's vet, Gail Schroder did none of these things for a senior dog with pyometra; letting this poor little dog suffer for seven days. Greenhill refuses to take responsibility for this neglect. We think Gail was waiting for the dog to die so Greenhill didn't have to spend money on her.

I was volunteering at Greenhill and ended up adopting two dogs, both of which have some serious health problems I was not properly informed about.  I am left trying to scramble for the money to fix the medical problems as I will not give them back to Greenhill because I no longer believe they would care for them. 

One had Pyometra and I was not told this. I found out by rereading the bottom of her dental instructions. It was a small paragraph at the bottom and said it was not resolved. I found that out by taking her to the vet for an anal infection. I read the vets notes again today from Greenhill and she waited 7 days while the dog's temp went up from the Pyometra to do her spay!

As for the Pyometra it's clearly written that staff said they noticed discharge, but upon the vet exam there was none. Not sure why she didn’t do some kind of vaginal swab. It only states to monitor temp over weekend and give antibiotics if signs of Pyometra.  Pretty sure staff documenting red milky vaginal discharge from an older unspayed dog is a sign of Pyometra, but that's just my opinion.

What if I didn't understand and hadn’t reread the documents? She could have gotten very sick (septic) and possibly died. Why not just start her on the antibiotics at the first sign of discharge as a precaution? Why leave it to a possible temp increase suggesting sepsis and emergency surgery or possible death? Pyometra is not something to play with—it's serious.

The one dog has glaucoma and I wasn't given any meds to take home. I asked and they said no and I offered to buy it. I was not told it was serious enough an eye removal.

One of the guys I used to see at Greenhill asked me about the little one’s eye and wanted to know if they could save it....I didn't know what to say, it was first I had heard of "saving" it. I heard more than one person there say they [Greenhill] don't treat medical issues appropriately. I was brand new and started to slowly put things together about a lot of things, and the final straw was this heartbreaking experience with the dogs I am sorry if this seems long winded. I am emotionally spent and need help.

I am desperately trying to care for them as they were both not well cared for all their lives. They are 9 and 10. I have had dogs my whole life and have never seen this many problems. None of this happened over night, and now I am trying to fix it all. They both deserve to have their last few years in great comfort and they love living with me. I just can't seem to get above water with the medical issues [that were not disclosed] as they both keep having to go back to the vet. I stopped volunteering because I couldn't go back after when I started to unravel with these two dogs.

I find it maddening Greenhill claims they can't afford to care medically for the animals. [Greenhill, unlike LCAS refuses to fundraise for individual animals] It's a lie and I know it. It's not honest to say the vets in Lane County would not donate their time for these kind of procedures. I feel local vets would offer to donate time and care for animals if Greenhill were to push for it. It's obscene they would not want to get that help to ensure all the animals left there in good health. I could go on about my feelings of the lack of care that occurred at Greenhill, as well as the lack of full disclosure about the animals. If Greenhill didn't have the ability to treat them, there is a Portland rescue that would have taken them and all the dogs there get full medical care before ever being adopted out and they explain any and all medical issues that will be lifelong. 

I volunteered [at Greenhill] because I love dogs and did it by choice and on my own time. I will never go back there again. I will never recommend them to people unless they change some of their practices.
Name withheld by request (for now).

Monday, February 16, 2015

What Greenhill's Medical Records Demonstrate

Oscar the Cat:  August 2012
Greenhill's vet, Gail Schroder examined Oscar upon intake and diagnosed a ruptured eye on 7/31/12.  (Extremely painful condition).  They tried pain meds for only three days, leaving Oscar not properly examined and treatment withheld through his release from Greenhill on 8/24/12.

 Their excuse for this, when put on the spot is that they decided to not perform surgery on Oscar because of behavior, so they did nothing; leaving him in pain.  Not performing surgery because they don't feel qualified is one thing but to do nothing else, leaving this cat to suffer is unconscionable.

They didn't feel that performing surgery on Oscar was "a humane option" but leaving him to sit without any treatment for a ruptured eye is?

When asked about what happened to Oscar while in their care, this is their reply:

In fact the question was characterized correctly based on information taken directly from Oscar's medical records.  Since apparently Greenhill's veterinary staff is not qualified enough to do the surgery based on Oscar's behavior and medical situation, what they are saying is they thought it was appropriate to do nothing; leaving Oscar to suffer.  No asking for outside help, no transferring Oscar to the rescue that wanted him; nothing.

When taken to a qualified veterinarian on 8/28/12; Oscar was sedated so his eye could be examined properly and he had surgery to remove what the vet called an "extremely painful" ruptured eye.  Oscar's acting out was because he was afraid, and because he was in immense pain.  Pain which Greenhill's vet is not qualified or caring enough to recognize.

Post op care was provided by a skilled caregiver with no problems.  Oscar went to live with the home that West Coast Dog & Cat had arranged for him in early August 2012.  Oscar was not dangerous or even acting out once his eye was removed and he received proper care that Greenhill's medical staff denied him.  


Lieberman's Emotional Blackmail of former Greenhill employee

In November, 2014, Greenhill's Executive director wrote an email to a former employee, who has given us her testimony.  (See:  Resignation Letter)  Lieberman's email is below:

What Greenhill is failing to grasp here is its not speaking the truth about what goes on behind the scenes, its the actions behind the scenes that need to change.  This former employee refuses to keep Greenhill's secrets.  She is a hero.  Lieberman is placing blame on others instead of cleaning up inhumane acts and abuse of the animals.  This abuse and neglect are the problem, not that former employees are choosing to speak out about them.

This is attempted emotional blackmail.  Shameful, abusive behavior from Greenhill's management. Lieberman is asking people to lie so he can keep his job.

(No "expression of dismay" was left on Greenhill's voicemail)