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Posted

A cat that helped a Phoenix man overcome his heroin addiction was euthanized just hours after he brought it to an Arizona Humane Society for treatment of a laceration.

Humane Society officials confirmed Tuesday that the 9-month-old cat, named Scruffy, was put down not because of its wounds, but because its owner could not immediately pay for its care. :(

Scruffy's owner, Daniel Dockery, who had been searching for the cat since taking it to the Humane Society's Campus for Compassion on West Dobbins Road three weeks ago, said he was devastated.
"Now I've got to think about how I failed that beautiful animal," Dockery, 49, said. "I failed her. ... That's so wrong. There was no reason for her not to be treated."

Dockery said he surrendered ownership of Scruffy on Dec. 8 after clinic officials declined to take a credit card from his mother over the phone or wait 24 hours for cash. He said staff told him Scruffy would be treated only if he signed over ownership.

A story about Dockery's search for Scruffy on Saturday in The Arizona Republic led to an outpouring of support. In more than 150 e-mails and phone calls, residents offered Dockery financial help, new kittens and free veterinarian services.

"The treatment of Mr. Dockery and his cat, Scruffy, was extremely sad and made me very angry at the lack of compassion he received," Andrea Peterssen wrote in an e-mail. "This type of situation tarnishes the reputation of all the good people who work and volunteer (at the Humane Society)."

Residents also expressed outrage on the Humane Society's Facebook page, which was flooded with messages from donors threatening to pull donations and demanding that Dockery be reunited with Scruffy.

A Humane Society spokeswoman said Tuesday that a lack of resources led to Scruffy's fate. She said staff members did not want to publicly discuss the issue before now because they had no way to reach Dockery.

"The Humane Society took that cat with every intention of treating the cat and putting it in foster care," Stacy Pearson said. "It was never intended for that cat to be euthanized."

Pearson said Scruffy was transported to the Humane Society's second-chance clinic along with three other cats; doctors were available to treat only two.

"This truly is a worst-case scenario ... and it is one the Arizona Humane Society must deal with every day," Pearson said.

She said if Dockery paid for the treatment or the clinic had accepted the credit card by phone, Scruffy would not have gone to the second-chance clinic.

On Friday, the Humane Society said it will review its credit-card policy.

That was little solace for Dockery, who credits Scruffy with helping him maintain sobriety after a lifetime of heroin addiction. Dockery, who has an extensive prison record, said he raised Scruffy from birth.

Despite his anger, Dockery is encouraging people not to pull funding from the Humane Society.

"I don't want to turn people away from the Humane Society," he said. "They do do good works."

[url="http://www.azcentral.com/business/consumer/articles/2011/12/27/20111227phoenix-scruffy-cat-euthanized.html"]source[/url]

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Posted

I hate the humane society. They do nothing to help you even if you buy the animal from them. I had a dog that i got from them, paid top dollar for all the shots and for it to be fixed and ownership. A week after getting the dog she cut her paw on a piece of glass while playing in the park and i called them cause she was bleeding pretty bad. I didnt get paid till the next day so i asked if they could fix her paw and hold her till the next day and i can fully pay and they refused. i finally found a mom and pop vet that agreed and fixed her up.

As for the OPs story i had a cat that had kidney stones and they said they would do the surgery and at a discount cause im a student, they called a few hours later and said he died from heart issues and couldn't come out of the
anesthetic. While it might be true i always wondered about vets giving discounts then something bad happening when you leave. Could just be lingering questions when you lose a pet but this kinda confirms it does happen.

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Posted

Oh, I'm heartbroken for him. :(
And it is very decent of him, for requesting people to not cancel their donations for this organization.

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Posted

********, I would sue the **** out of them. They call themselves the Humane Society, yeah right, more like InHumane Society.

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Posted

That is actually a very common thing for Both Vets and [color=#282828]Humane[/color] society to do. There are a lot of people that simply cannot afford to keep their pets healthy. However; generally they offer it as an option not just do it.

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Posted

[quote name='Hum' timestamp='1325170513' post='594550979']
"They do do good works."
[/quote]

They [b][i]do do [/i][/b]good works... lol...

Im having a Chandler Bing moment....ROFL...

Sorry about that... do carry on...

Mr.Ed

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Posted

I think the problem is here pet healthcare. It is leagues behind what human healthcare is. With Humans, we give them the option to pay after the visit, to be fixed first. With pets, they require the money upfront, or they pet will just have to suffer. And while there is "pet insurance", many do not know about it, and you then have to find a vet that will work with whatever type of insurance you have on it. There needs to be a more humane way of treating peoples pets.. something more than the cake or death option.

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Posted

Even with humans, money is more important than life. :(
1 person likes this

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Posted

[quote name='Hum' timestamp='1325173424' post='594551121']
Even with humans, money is more important than life. :(
[/quote]
...how far do you think he would have gone for a $400 fix of heroin?

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Posted

[quote name='Hum' timestamp='1325173424' post='594551121']
Even with humans, money is more important than life. :(
[/quote]

I'll starve before my pets ever do. They are under my care, and I will do all I can to make sure they are well. Pets become people after a while. There needs to be a better system.

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Posted

[quote name='jwjw1' timestamp='1325174066' post='594551155']

...how far do you think he would have gone for a $400 fix of heroin?
[/quote]

Prolly not far since just a cat got him Sober.

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Posted

I don't see why they couldn't have treated and held the cat, until the owner came up with the money.

Would have been far less cruel ...

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Posted

"removed original post"

after reading this...I'd say the humane society really messed up!

Dockery said he surrendered ownership of Scruffy on Dec. 8 after clinic officials declined to take a credit card from his mother over the phone or wait 24 hours for cash. He said staff told him Scruffy would be treated only if he signed over ownership.

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Posted

I don't think the problem here is the lack of compassion, if it's their policy that injured animals in their custody with no money to pay for treatment get euthanized then that's one thing.

The problem here seems to be that the man was lied to or mislead.

If they had told him "We can take your cat but since you can't pay and she's injured she will be euthanized" then he could have either decided that that would be best to stop the suffering or he could have tried to take her somewhere else. It seems like he was lead to believe that he was doing the right thing to get her treated.
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Posted

the good folks criticizing the society should send THEIR money to help future cat victims... I am pretty sure you won't. :)

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Posted

[quote name='rippleman' timestamp='1325177183' post='594551285']
the good folks criticizing the society should send THEIR money to help future cat victims... I am pretty sure you won't. :)
[/quote]

Won't do any good to send money to a shelter that has policies set up like that. Better to donate towards "No-Kill" shelters, as they will have policies that will give a good pet a better chance. No Kill Shelters still kill, but they have stricter guidelines about what behavior issues a animal must have before it can be considered for termination.
With animal over population and desertions, it isn't the money issue, as more of a space issue. They basically would need more buildings to hold the animals in. There is just too many animals to cover and hold, without the promise of them being adopted.

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Posted

^ Maybe we could get 'foster homes' for pets, to help with the overcrowding.

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Posted

scruffy got scruffed!

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Posted

[quote name='Hum' timestamp='1325177756' post='594551311']
^ Maybe we could get 'foster homes' for pets, to help with the overcrowding.
[/quote]

They do have those. But again, pet vs human in numbers.. just not enough willing people to do that. But you can sign up with your local Human Society or other organization, to become an "Anime Rescuer/Foster Care Giver"
[url="http://www.aspca.org/aspca-nyc/volunteer/fostering.aspx"]http://www.aspca.org.../fostering.aspx[/url]
I did this for a few years, but it is very taxing. You end up getting attached to the animals just as they are leaving, and there is a lot of care that some of the animals need.

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Posted

its just a cat for gods sake. Its not like the guy is dying or anything.

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Posted

^ Harm my cats, and you'll learn that it is NOT just a cat.
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Posted

I would've gladly paid this man's bill on the spot, I have two cats of my own, and as others have said, I would starve before they ever had to. Pets cannot speak, and are always trusting over their owners, people have a responsibility to take care of, provide for, and protect the animals they are entrusted to look after. Putting down the cat because the owner couldn't pay for 24 hours is criminal Their animals should be taken from them.

There are a few no-kill shelters around, there needs to be more..

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Posted

[quote name='rippleman' timestamp='1325177183' post='594551285']
the good folks criticizing the society should send THEIR money to help future cat victims... I am pretty sure you won't. :)
[/quote]

Oh I agree, but it seems like it was done same day, they denied his mothers card over the phone. And he was going to get the money within a day or 2.

I could understand if they did it like a week later or something. But not that quickly. More then likely it was just a mixup of paperwork, along same lines of regular hospitals have accidentally doing stuff as the paperwork said to.

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Posted

[quote name='vladmhome' timestamp='1325178703' post='594551373']
its just a cat for gods sake. Its not like the guy is dying or anything.
[/quote]except if it wasnt for the cat, he would have died...

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Posted

hmm if you read the follow up article, it says they "dont know where his cat is", so it may still be alive, plus they're accepting donations to help get the cat back.

I'm gonna donate to help this guy, maybe 200$

follow up:[url="http://www.azcentral.com/community/phoenix/articles/2011/12/23/20111223phoenix-man-loses-kitten-thats-his-saving-grace.html"]http://www.azcentral.com/community/phoenix/articles/2011/12/23/20111223phoenix-man-loses-kitten-thats-his-saving-grace.html[/url]

[quote]
[b]Saturday's update on this story: [/b]
There has been an overwhelming response and outpouring of sympathy for Daniel Dockery and his cat, Scruffy.
[i]The Arizona Republic[/i] will continue to collect offers of donations of animals and money at robert.anglen@arizonarepublic.com, and forward them to Dockery.
Dockery said he is "overwhelmed" by people's generous offers and continues to hope for the return of Scruffy from the Arizona Humane Society.
[color=#000000][left]
Read more: [url="http://www.azcentral.com/community/phoenix/articles/2011/12/23/20111223phoenix-man-loses-kitten-thats-his-saving-grace.html#ixzz1hzU7sRZU"]http://www.azcentral.com/community/phoenix/articles/2011/12/23/20111223phoenix-man-loses-kitten-thats-his-saving-grace.html#ixzz1hzU7sRZU[/url][/left][/color]
[/quote]

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