The NYC House of Horrors


Thank you so much for your blog “New York City in Chaos”! I am a volunteer at ACC… Any volunteer who is caught talking about the circumstances at ACC is terminated, so PLEASE do not share where you got this information. But because of budget cuts, ACC is tremendously understaffed. And the walking program has been cut entirely, so most dogs in the main building (who are on hold or otherwise “not adoptable”) do not get walked, sometimes for days. They are trapped in their cage for days. And because the volunteer program is in disarray and has been for a year now (though the formal suspension happened only recently) there aren’t enough volunteers to step up and make up the slack. All we get are a lot of emails saying that the short-term pain is for the long-term good–but the dogs and cats in the shelter now are going to suffer and/or die before ANYTHING changes. And from what I hear about the new policies that will be put in place in September, when the volunteer trainings will supposedly resume, it will become very difficult for anyone to become a volunteer who can actually interact with the animals. It’s hard enough to convince people to volunteer at a kill shelter–now they want to make people jump through 20,000 hoops to do so. We are all so frustrated and so sad for the conditions of the animals who are not being given proper care. Their deaths are bad enough, but to see them suffer so much in the days and weeks before their ends when it is beyond unnecessary. And we are exhausted because there is so much need and no relief in sight. Needless to say, we are all beside ourselves. And we feel powerless because ANYONE who speaks out is branded a troublemaker, or even banned from the shelter. And with conditions so incredibly bad, every body in the building walking dogs and taking care of the cats counts.

Ever since I posted my blog, New York City in Chaos, I’ve been flooded with e-mails about conditions in city shelters. And they come with proof: internal New York City Animal Care & Control (ACC) documents showing that the shelter system is a mismanaged, uncaring house of horrors. Like the dog who ate off half of his own tail because his injury was not cared for properly for three days:

NYC is the recipient of over $20,000,000 of Maddie’s Fund money, the Mayor’s Alliance raises millions more on top of that, and the ASPCA took in $128,000,000 in one year alone, just down the street from the shelter. While these groups hoard millions, the animals:

  • go without basic care,
  • languish in filth,
  • are being denied needed medical treatment,
  • healthy and treatable animals are put to death, and
  • the shelter has warned it is running out of food to feed them.

And those who want to do something about it are prevented from doing so: rescue groups are being turned away, volunteers are being banned from the shelter, and anyone who expresses concern about conditions is summarily terminated.

The whole thing is an unbelievable, tragic, reprehensible betrayal of the animals. These are the groups that are the true hoarders–of money, of power, and for keeping animals in squalid conditions. And this isn’t even half the story…