On June 18, 2009 New Yorkers were outraged and saddened to hear that a one-year old pit bull mix was beaten and thrown off the roof of a six floor building in Brooklyn. Oreo suffered two broken legs and a fractured ribcage, but miraculously survived the fall. After months of rehabilitation, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was able to repair Oreo’s injuries.
Despite Oreo’s physical recovery, the ASPCA made the decision to euthanize the pit bull on November 13, 2009. Following months of both physical and obedience rehabilitation, the ASPCA determined that Oreo’s erratic aggression made her a danger to both humans and other animals.
Oreo’s euthanization elicited sadness and anger from animal lovers throughout the state. Protestors rallied outside the ASPCA building early Friday morning. Many animal activists felt that Oreo should have been given the opportunity to be adopted by one of the hundreds of families that wanted her. Pets Alive, a non-profit animal sanctuary located in Middletown, N.Y., sent many unanswered correspondences to the ASPCA in hopes of taking over responsibility and rehabilitation of Oreo.
In response to their decision, ASPCA spokesman Andy Izquierdo stated, “We’re saddened by the outcome, but we truly feel it’s the most humane decision for Oreo.” Mr. Izquierdo further stated in response to the protests, “We understand the outcry. This poor animal was thrown off a roof, but this is a decision made by several behaviorists. This is a dog that is not only highly aggressive but unpredictable.”
Fabian Henderson, Oreo’s abuser, was charged with Felony Aggravated Cruelty to Animals for throwing Oreo off of the six-floor building. Henderson plead guilty to this charge and will be sentenced on December 1st.