A Humane Policy?

In his long career as a Coleytown Middle School phys ed. teacher, Ron Weir was well known for lavishing care and attention on every child.

Less well known is his interest in animals.  But that’s an important interest too.  Over the years, Ron has adopted 5 dogs from the Westport branch of the Connecticut Humane Society.

A couple of months ago, he picked up an 8-year-old dalmatian mix.

The man Ron hired to install an invisible fence on his property said the dog had “kennel cough.”  The next day, Ron took Precious to the vet.  The dog was diagnosed with heartworm.

The Humane Society has a 30-day policy for visiting a vet.  Ron called the Society, and described the potentially fatal parasitic disease.  The Humane Society said to bring the dog back.

His vet, however, said that — because of Precious’ age and illness — that meant it would be euthanized.

“I love this animal,” Ron says.  “That’s unacceptable.”

He took Precious to several veterinarians.  One — a heart specialist in Shelton — thinks he can save the dog.

Ron had spent $250 on a Humane Society insurance policy.  But it paid only $1,500.  So far, Ron has paid about $6,000 for the animal’s care.

He called the Humane Society in Westport — and the state office — to see if they could help with medical expenses.

“The dog came from North Carolina,” Ron says.  “My vet said there’s a lot of heartworm down there.  But the Humane  Society never checked for it.”

I called the Westport Humane Society, and asked about its policy if — after adoption — one of its animals is found to have a disease.

“We don’t provide care,” a spokeswoman said.  “All animals are spayed, neutered, and current in their shots.”

So, I continued, an owner has to pick up all medical expenses for a dog rescued from its facility?

“Of course,” she replied.

Ron thinks it’s unfair that the dog was not tested for an endemic disease like heartworm.

But, he says, he won’t let Precious be put down.

“I love her,” he says.  “I’m not going to lose her.”

(A reader asked if she could contribute funds to Precious’s care.  Ron Weir’s address is Box 488, Redding Ridge, CT 06876.)

11 responses to “A Humane Policy?

  1. the society should start a campaign to raise money for more testing and maybe even more medical care.. it is not that they are unkind there is simply not enough funds available for this use

  2. Cuddos to you Ron!!! God will Bless you in so many ways, but the true blessing comes from within where the his spirit lies.
    I watched a special on TV last year about the Humane Society. The commericals we see where they are asking for donations, well, according to many Humane Society’s they don’t see a penny of that money! I now donate to local shelters abd mainly to the no kill ones. Maybe I should donate to others but I feel that the Humane Society isn’t humane at all!!!! Our family had a run in with the one there in Westport back in the 70’s. It wasn’t pretty at all and that prompted my mother to get involved with Friends of Animals and P.A.W.S. She volunteered her time with them until she couldn’t any longer due to illness. Best of luck to you and Preciuos!!!

  3. Good luck with Precious! I had a German Shepard who had this, and after amounts of treatment similar to what you described he was cured. He lived 7 more very happy and active years.

  4. Will Ron accept donations toward Precious’s care? If so, where may they be sent?

  5. Linda Smith

    I’m glad that information about the CT Humane Society (and yes, never donate to a national “Humane Society” because it has no association with local state societies and passes along no donations) is being shared. We had a more minor but similar situation when we adopted a “8 month old kitty” for my mother, age 90. When I took him to the vet, the vet could tell he was really only 3 months old (why couldn’t the CT Humane Society’s vet tell that?) and he grew so HUGE that by 8 months he couldn’t fit on my mother’s small lap in the wheelchair. I too support PAWS and have adopted two stray cats and we just love them to death. Never again with the CT Humane Society.

    May Precious have a long, long life!

  6. It is so sad to hear stories like this. But when will people take the time to understand what’s really going on here. Ct humane societies can play a crucial role in rescuing LOCAL dogs. The problem is that there are nowhere near enough to offer those LOCAL people ego want to do the right thing and rescue a puppy. So what most local humane societies have turned to is importing dogs from the deep south AS WELL as from places like Mexico and Puerto Rico and even the far east!!!!
    This results in new strains of bacteria and even diseases that many local dogs have no immunity against. The dogs brought to us from far away often come from places where they nev received proper vaccinations as a puppy and this can easily lead to many problems as the dogs get older. Heart worm is just one of dozens of things that one would have to check for in order to insure a dog is healthy but at a 250 or 300 adoption fee there is no money to do such tests.
    There are actually shelters that make a profit off their $300 adoption fees and they simply need more dogs and puppies to get more adoption fees cand the donations that frequently follow an adoption so they have resorted o impoing all sorts of dogs from anywhere.
    Ct dept of animal control has been aware of this issue fr years and the ct legislature just passed a law that takes effect October 1 of this year that will put limits on imports, require isolation periods and require multiple vet examinations nd medical records before and after the animals enter ct. The animal activists and rescue groups say that the cost of the new bill will put ct shelters out of business because it will be too expensive for them to continue bringing dogs in from out of state and there isn’tenou locL ogs for them to rescue!
    Gee is it better to bring sick dogs into the state that unsuspecting adopters have to spend thousands on as well as put our local dogs At risk of new illnesses?
    Over 150000 dogs were brought into the. US last year from just Mexico and Puerto Rico. The animal activists won’t tell you about that. They just want to make sure that you stay away from pet stores where dogs are examined, tested, vaccinated and guaranteed which is one of the reasons they cost more than at a shelter! DUH?
    This is a very important story that no one wants to talk about. Maybe Dan should take the time to check it out. You would be both surprised and disappointed.

    • No matter how poorly CHS might handle a specific situation, it is never better to purchase a puppy from a pet store than to adopt from a shelter! Every puppy you see at a store comes from a mill. That means horrendous and disease-ridden conditions for not just the puppy but his entire family. They cost more because it is a for-profit business that incurs large “inventory” losses due to theie inhumane practices. And guess what? Most of the dogs tou see at

  7. Wow, I for one will welcome a more stringent animal control law. Massachusetts has a similar one, which is why CT and NH have become the drop off points for the southern ship-ups, including those pets designated for MA families who come across the border.

    With an estimated 2 million animals put down every year due to lack of space in shelters, there is a huge surplus of pets needing homes, including puppies & kittens and a quarter of them are purebred. There are specific breed rescue groups across the country as well as local shelters and private rescue groups.

  8. Dog Lover- As someone who works at a dog rescue I can tell you that you are way off base. If you think that rescues are making a profit off of a $300 adoption fee then you really know nothing about the costs associated with rescuing an animal. Please take a minute to consider the cost of spay/neuter, heart-worm treatment, flea prevention, heart-worm prevention, food, vaccinations and any special treatments necessary for sick dogs. While I agree that there are people looking to make a profit off of animals, It is very rarely the rescue group. Animals are often moved to areas where there is a demand for them. Several shelters in New Orleans, where I live, transport dogs up north because there are more homes for them there. I am very disappointed that someone who calls themselves a “dog lover” would say anything remotely positive about the way that dogs are tested and treated in pet stores. Perhaps you have never heard of puppy mills. Also I would love to know where you find your information regarding this issue.

  9. Wondering if there is an update available on this story.
    How is Precious?