Texas vets put animals in cages, give them electric shocks after dogs die
SAN ANTONIO — Veterinarians at the Tulsa Veterinary Hospital in Tulsa, Okla., euthanized more than 1,000 pets over the weekend after they discovered their owners had been suffering from severe depression and anxiety.
The hospital said it euthanizes animals on the basis of medical reasons when it is medically impossible for them to be cared for by their owners, and when the owner is no longer able to care for them.
The pets were euthanased because they had been diagnosed with chronic mental illness and were deemed to pose a threat to themselves or others.
In the case of the dogs, the veterinarian said, the dogs were found to have the same mental illness as the patients who had died of the disease.
According to Tulsa Police Chief James Brown, the owners had given the animals to their relatives or to friends who were willing to take them home and foster them, which is how the pets got to the hospital.
He said the animals were not euthanzed because the hospital could not provide the proper care for the animals because of a lack of beds.
Brown said the dogs are the second dog death this year at the hospital and the first death in more than five years at the clinic.
Veterinarians said the hospital has a limited number of beds, which limited their ability to care properly for the pets.
The dog deaths are the third this year and the sixth this year in the Tulsa facility.
Tulsa police Sgt. Scott Wilson said police officers are working to track down the owners of the animals and to determine if they will face any charges.
Wilson said the department is working to get the animals into a veterinary facility in Tulsa.
He added that the department has been in contact with the animal shelters to try to find out if the dogs would be adopted out.
The animal shelters, the Tulsa Humane Society and the Tulsa Police Department are assisting in the investigation.
Brown added that he hopes the public and local law enforcement will continue to look for the owners and bring them to justice.
Brown and the hospital released a statement on Sunday saying the euthanasia was part of an ongoing program that was “reformulated” to address the problem.
“We do not want to use euthanasia as an excuse for the neglect and neglect of our pets,” the statement said.
“At no time during our euthanasia process did we receive any complaints from the owners regarding their animals being neglected.
The Tulsa Veterinarian’s Office will continue working with local law enforcemen, animal shelters and others to find the owner of these pets, who should be brought to justice.”
Wilson said that while the program is a first for Tulsa, the department will continue work to improve the facility and the euthanizing process.
He also said the agency has implemented more aggressive training to make sure it will not happen again.