Motion Asks Law Professor To Oversee Dogs Seized From Vick Property

Vick pit bull

Federal authorities have filed a motion suggesting that a Valparasio law professor to become the guardian-special master to oversee the outcome of dozens of dogs seized from Michael Vick’s home.

According to the motion filed in federal court on Monday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Richmond also asked that each of the 48 pit bulls be spayed, neutered and have microchips implanted.

Animal law expert Rebecca Huss has been requested to oversee the disposition and possible placement of the dogs.

If Huss is appointed, she would travel to Virginia to evaluate the dogs and make recommendations on their future. The court would then carry out her recommendations. There is no deadline for the process.

A spokesman for the Valparaiso University School of Law said: “her goal is, and the court’s goal is, to find the best possible future for the dogs and the humans and other animals with which those dogs would come in contact.”

Source: Canadian Press

(Thanks menusux)

23 Responses to “Motion Asks Law Professor To Oversee Dogs Seized From Vick Property”

  1. Nora and Rufus says:

    Happy to see that all dogs are being accounted for and cared for. Hopefully this attorney is someone with a compassion and a far sighted vision for the poor Bullies. May God watch over these dogs and their people.

  2. Anonymous says:

    With all duerespect to “Nora and Rufus”: Obviously you love animals, BUT, these dogs are still in agony from a physical, spiritual and emotional point of view. They will never be “normal.” The kindest thing to do for them is to give them an injection and “put them to sleep.” They will never recover psychically from the torture and degradation they endured. Allow them some true Peace. Let them go. Let them rest. Let them truly heal. It is certainly a tragedy; however, well-meaning people carry this too far by thinking the dogs will be better off kept alive. They will suffer until the end of their days. I have pit bulls. They are a loving breed. Have compassion for these 48 victims and end their suffering, PLEASE!

  3. Nancy says:

    “In agony from a physical, spiritual and emotional point of view.”????? We are talking about dogs here! Their wounds have healed, many of them need socialization and training, but there is nothing “spiritual” in the dog psyche. Who are you kidding? Dogs do not “agonize” over the past, only we humans do that. The Vick dogs have already put the past behind them and have moved on to live and begin to enjoy their new existence. Things for them will only improve now they have been given a decent chance at life. News coverage showed puppies gamboling at the feet of the animal control people as they loaded up adults; their tails wagging joyfully as they tried to play with officials. No phsyical, emotional or “spiritual” pain to be seen, yet you would condemn them to death for some imaginary pain that exists only within yourself. Get real!

  4. Debra says:

    With all due respect, you are so stupid and you don’t even know it.

  5. Lynn says:


    Debra: Who are you referring to? No matter - calling someone names never solved anything.

    Nancy: Not all dogs get over past issues as quickly as you seem to think. Ever see a fearful dog?

    Nora and Rufus: You don’t know for certain that these dogs will be fearful and distrustful of humans, or that they will suffer deep and chronic anxiety as a result of what they’ve been through. I wouldn’t be too quick to condemn them to death. If they appear to want to be appropriately socialized they should be given the chance.

  6. 2CatMom says:

    I thought these dogs had already been evaluated, what’s up with this? Didn’t the ASPCA and one of the Bully Breed Rescue groups go through an thorough evaluation of the dogs - passing all but 1.

    I hope this isn’t an excuse to ignore their evaluations.

  7. straybaby says:

    October 16th, 2007 at 9:36 am,

    so by your reasoning, any dog that’s ever suffered abuse should be put down.

    my dog would beg to differ, as would i.

  8. Nora and Rufus says:

    HELLO! I DID NOT POST THAT RIDICULOUS BLOG SAYING THAT ALL THOSE DOGS SHOULD BE PUT TO SLEEP!!!!!!!! I have noticed that some peoples names remain in the Name box after they post a comment. That is obviously what happened after I posted my comment that was the FIRST ONE posted in this column TODAY. NOT the second one. Whomever did that. GO TO HELL. I WOULD NEVER POST AN IGNORANT AND SIMPLE MINDED COMMENT LIKE THE 2nd one here today that so stupidly states that those dogs do not deserve a life!!!!!!

    ITCHMO ADMIN: There is an occasional bug in the system that may have done that with the comment. We changed the second comment from your name to Anonymous. Sorry about that.

  9. Lynn says:

    Nora and Rufus: My apologies. I saw your screen name and the statement of 9:36 AM and quite frankly couldn’t believe the statement was coming from YOU! I reread it several times and still couldn’t believe it. The first sentence didn’t even read right.

    Still, I felt I had to respond to whomever wrote the posting of 9:36AM. And I still mean what I wrote.

    Only now I know it wasn’t Nora and Rufus who wrote that. My sincere apologies again, Nora.

    Itchmo - something DEFINITELY is wrong with the website today. Did you do some maintenance last night? Even I noticed that I had lost two whole comments……something is way off today.

    ITCHMO ADMIN: We haven’t changed anything with the website. We will keep an eye on things. We changed the poster name for the comment that was under Nora and Rufus’ name. There is an occasional bug that does that with poster names.

  10. Debra says:

    I am referring to the Nora and Rufus poser. Dogs do not suffer spiritually. They live in the moment. Yes, dogs do sometimes suffer long-term damage and sometimes irreparable damage and but across all breeds they have the most amazing ability to recover from incredible adversity and abuse. There is every reason to believe that these dogs can live wonderful lives–to love and be loved. The histrionics “Allow them some true Peace. Let them go. Let them rest. Let them truly heal.” is simply an over-the-top ridiculous masquerade of compassionate concern. I have no patience whatsoever with anybody whose solution for abused, old or unwanted dogs is DEATH. Is poser a member of PETA, perchance?

  11. Nora and Rufus says:

    Lynn, I knew you did not know. And I know that you are a real sweetheart. Thankyou. I so enjoy swapping fond memories of pets past and present that we all love and so many of you are just great people and Rufus and I appreciate so much the kindness that I feel from so many of you! Thank you so much ITCHMO Administrator for setting all this straight!!! LONG LIVE ITCHMO.

  12. EmilyS says:

    Something is missing in this story.
    The ASPCA team already evaluated the dogs and assessed that all but one should be given a chance at new lifes. So what is this motion about???

    At this point what the dogs need is to get out of the shelters they are in, where I understand they have limited interaction with people and into the rescues that will begin the process of their “rehabilitation”

    A reminder to all to read what BadRap (part of the ASPCA team) has to say:
    (scroll down to read the Vick story and others about “fighting” dogs)

    Those of you clamoring to kill these dogs “for their own sakes” need to examine what’s in your hearts. The victims of dogfighting cruelty deserve every chance. They deserve to be protected from additional cruelty pretending to be compassion.

  13. highnote says:

    This is not the subject but important that everyone knows about the problem in our corn this year because it can kill our pets if put in any of the food.

    Toxic mold aflatoxin found in Iowa and S.Dakota corn By Lisa Shumaker
    2 hours, 26 minutes ago

    CHICAGO (Reuters) - Farmers in northwestern Iowa and southeastern South Dakota have found aflatoxin, a mold that can cause cancer in humans if consumed in large amounts, in their recently harvested corn, said a researcher at Iowa State University and a county extension agent on Tuesday.


    With several parts of the Midwest having gone through a scorching summer, more farmers in the Corn Belt may find aflatoxin, said Don White, professor of crop sciences at the University of Illinois.

    “We’ve had the environment for it,” he said. “I would think there are going to be scattered pockets.”

    Farmers in southeast Nebraska found a few loads of corn in three counties with aflatoxin in late September, with no new cases reported lately, said Tamra Jackson, plant pathologist at the University of Nebraska.

    The extension office in Plymouth County, Iowa, has received 20 to 25 reports from farmers, with levels mostly between 20 and 100 parts per billion. The highest level found was 600 parts per billion, said Joel DeJong, extension field agronomist.

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration limits aflatoxin for food or animal feed to 20 parts per billion. Countries importing U.S. corn often demand even lower limits.

    In addition to Iowa, the nation’s top corn producing state, aflatoxin has been found in neighboring Union County in South Dakota. Both areas suffered high temperatures and a drought this summer, which favor the development of the toxin.

    Aflatoxin is a byproduct of a fungus that grows on corn, peanuts and other crops. Consuming aflatoxin in large amounts can cause liver cancer in humans or kill animals.

    In 2005, the FDA found that 76 dogs died after eating Diamond Pet Food made at the company’s Gaston, South Carolina, plant.

    The Farmers Cooperative Co, which has three grain elevators in northwest Iowa, has rejected about 25 to 30 percent of the corn brought in for having more than 20 parts per billion of aflatoxin, said general manager Roger Price.

    “The harvest is barely started here,” he said. “The fact that it’s on everyone’s radar screen is very positive.”

    The last time aflatoxin was found in the Iowa corn crop was in 2005, when it affected the southeast corner of the state.

    “It was probably more widespread in 2005 than it is this year,” said Charles Hurburgh, professor of agriculture at Iowa State.

    The toxin-producing fungus, Aspergillus flavus, thrives in hot days and nights with temperatures near 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).

    (Additional reporting by Christine Stebbins in Chicago)

  14. Lynn says:

    EMILY: Thanks so much for setting things straight and changing the name of the second posting to “Anonynmous.”

    Nora and Rufus: Thanks for understanding - YOU are the real sweethearts!


    Now….back to the issue at hand…..

    Yes, it does seem as though we are jumping through the same hoops all over again. Maybe there’s a lot more to this story than we know about? Before today’s story, I though it had already been decided that the dogs would be retrained and resocialized………I inferred that this was with the intent of placing them into homes. [And if so, why is Huss needed?]

    Can someone clarify, please?

  15. Pit Bull Lover says:

    Ya know, when I read Anonymous’ “I have pit bulls.” statement, I thought to myself, “What? Dead, stuffed, and mounted?” Just my morbid sense of humor, folks. I certainly don’t think every dog in the world can be saved, but if any of Vick’s (former) dogs possess the conditional possibility of rehabilitation, they deserve a chance.

    I’m hoping this attorney is kinda like a “guardian ad litem” for the dogs, with no hidden agenda except to act in the dogs’ best interests, legally speaking.

  16. straybaby says:

    i have to wonder if the reporter got it wrong. why would an animal law expert be evaluating the dogs? she’s a law expert, not behavior unless they left that out?

    if she’s to “oversee the disposition and possible placement of the dogs.”, i would take that to be watch over the situation and make sure the judge’s and aspca’s orders/recommendations be carried out and to act in the best interest of the dogs. she may go down and “evaluate” the situation as it stands now and set the wheels in motion for things to move forward, but i really don’t see the judge in this case giving a law professor the job of evaluating dogs in the same manner as a trainer/behavior expert would. she will prob oversee the dogs through their rehab via the various groups and possible placement as a representative of the court, not as a hands on person?

  17. trucorgi says:

    From http://sportsillustrated.cnn.c.....=si_latest
    today “U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson acted on a government motion requesting animal law expert Rebecca J. Huss serve as the guardian-special master to oversee the possible placement of the 48 dogs, or their euthanasia.”
    “The court will be responsible for carrying out Huss’ recommendations.”
    Being that Huss is an animal rights activist, I fear the dogs will soon be dead.

  18. straybaby says:

    from the same SI article:

    ” The motion filed Monday acknowledged the government has “not ruled out the possibility” additional dogs may be euthanized after further evaluations are completed, but said other placement options are preferred.”

    i don’t know how Huss’s opinion would be able to override a team a animal behavior experts. i think they may have left the door open that more dogs may need to be euthed if after a time they prove to be unsafe, but i think that would come from the animal experts not an animal rights lawyer. hopefully, she is just overseeing the process as eyes for the court and to make sure everything is on the up. i’d hate to see this go down hill :(

  19. trucorgi says:

    I hope you are right and I am wrong but she is now their legal guardian and she can bring in her own “experts”, like Peta and Hsus. We already know what their opinion is. The court must accept her and her “expert’s” recommendations.

  20. pit bull mommy x4 says:

    Anonymus, if you truly understood your pit bulls you would know they will heal and be normal given the chance, During my time as a pit bull rescuer and owner I have seen this breed overcome things others breeds never would. Yes this breed has been breed as fighters and for agression, but they were also breed loyalty and above all to love their humans. Given a chance these dogs can live long and healthy lives, with responsible owners. Please note I said “RESPONSIBLE OWNERS” not owners who would put them to sleep because of their past at the hands of Human beings. Not someone who would give up on them the first time something goes wrong. Owning a pit bull is not for cowards or those who remain anonymous. Stand up and be proud of your PET BULL, I know I am.

    By the way, on Saturday October 21st my oldest girl, a former chain dog and nearly starved baby a rescue will take her CGC and TDI test. I was told to put her to sleep at rescue. Good thing I had more sense than that.

    One Proud Pit Bull Mommy

  21. Lynn says:

    Put Bull Mommy X4 - and very proud you should be!

  22. 2CatMom says:

    Here’s a link to her credentials:

    Anybody have the ability to get access to the papers she’s published to see where she stands on issues?

    I’m going to email badrap and see what they know.

  23. 2CatMom says:

    I’ve sent a second email to Badrap, I’m really disappointed that I haven’t heard back from them.

E-mail It