The allegations are overwhelming: Almost 90 percent of the animals entrusted to her, mostly dogs and cats, are said to have killed Peta at their headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia in the course of 2012. This is now reported unanimously by several German newspapers such as the "Süddeutsche Zeitung", "Die Zeit" and "Focus". The basis for the reporting is the information from the Virginia Department of Agriculture, according to which 1,877 animals were admitted to state peta shelters last year, of which 1,675 were euthanized. In total, more than 29,000 animals are said to have been killed by Peta in the past eleven years.
Peta shelters: put to sleep instead of mediate?
"They claim to stand up for the rights of animals. But they do not approve of the animals 'right to life. Instead, they claim to want to kill the animals' as painlessly as possible, even if that was not necessary," claims the American animal rights activist Nathan Winograd. His article, published in the "Huffington Post", got the serious allegations against Peta rolling.
Allegations against Peta are not new
As early as 2010, the meat and tobacco industry interest group "Center for Consumer Freedom" published a report by the Ministry of Agriculture, which showed that the shelter at the Peta headquarters was lacking in space and that no efforts had been made to adopt the animals facilitate. 90 percent of the animals are said to have been killed within 24 hours of their arrival at Peta, since they were classified as "immediate".
Dog puppies in good hands at Peta?
Baby dogs playing: Adorable four-legged friends
What Peta says about the allegations
"There is nothing secret or revealing about it. Peta does not admit anything, but transmits these figures to the competent authority itself," Edmund Haferbeck, consultant at the sister organization Peta Germany, told the Süddeutsche Zeitung. Peta also comments on her website on the allegations. A Peta spokesman explains that only "sick, injured, aggressive or non-placeable" animals are put to sleep in the organization's animal shelters. "Four to six million animals are released in the United States each year," reports Peta campaign manager Nadja Kutscher. That is too many to pass on any animal.
Peta: No-kill shelters only take healthy animals
Nevertheless, the accusation of animal lovers seems that the proportion of animals passed on is very low - too low? The question remains to be clarified: are the animal shelters really so dramatically overcrowded that euthanasia is inevitable? Peta also provides a possible answer on her website. There the organization draws attention to the two concepts of animal shelters common in the USA. So-called "no-kill shelters" would not put animals to sleep, but would not take sick or behaviorally disturbed animals in the first place because they could not be mediated. Healthy animals are also often not accepted because the facilities are chronically overcrowded.
Peta promises death without pain
However, the animal rights organization would not reject any animal. However, since there are comparatively many abandoned animals in some states, especially sick and behaviorally disturbed animals could not be mediated. Euthanasia is therefore usually the only way to enable these animals to die without agony. At Peta, this procedure would only be carried out by veterinarians, without the animals suffering from pain. To do so, the organization accuses other animal shelters that would instead gas, shoot or shoot sick and unreliable animals or let other cruel deaths die.
Targeted by lobbyists?
That Peta repeatedly gets into the headlines because of euthanasia in their own animal shelters is, according to their own statements, primarily due to interest groups from the meat and tobacco industry, of which the above-mentioned association "Center for Consumer Freedom" would particularly stand out.
The controversy over American animal shelters has now been intensified by the allegations against Peta. From the point of view of all animal lovers, it remains to be hoped that the focus of this discussion will remain on the welfare of the animals.