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Terry Ward

Here is the real story behind the snark story..not that any of the robots care...


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National Animal Interest Alliance

Hi Terry. You may be interested to learn that all 22 charges against Wendy Willard were withdrawn last October:


Not one charge, not half the charges, but all of them.

At the very least, this means the PSPCA botched the job -- apparently botching it so badly as to earn a lawsuit for their behavior. That is the real story, and the point of the above article.

The treatment of animals is an important issue, one worthy of several blog posts in its own right -- but what we are discussing here is the alleged behavior of the PSPCA toward a dog owner, behavior that really should be quite alarming... well, unless you're the type of person who thinks Rodney King deserved to be brutally beaten because the police believed he was on PCP (even though toxicology reports indicated he wasn't), or that Wendy Willard deserved to have her rights violated because somebody believed she was abusing her hounds (even though all charges were later withdrawn).

margaret byrd

I never met Mrs. Willard but I wept when I read what had been done to her and her animals. I pray on bended knee she wins a vast fortune in court. I hope she makes them hemorrhage so much money that they will NEVER contemplate treating another animal owner with the cruelty, viciousness and disrespect with which they treated Mrs. Willard.

Terry Ward

This was an interesting all-night investigate-the-truth project.
Arguing with you folks is like juggling water moccasins but I must have a death wish.
You all are clever enough so sound all nicey-nicey and 'balanced'.
And slick enough to downplay the fact that this was an extraordinarily complicated case with many many players.
Painting the breeder/handler as a woeful victim serves only to propagandize.
But then you know this .
Willard is not an ignorant Neanderthal and Philly is not Monet, Missouri.
There aren't many knuckleheads in Pa. looking for 'animal rights terrorists' under every rock.
Some, but not many.
She was very well aware of the climate in Pa. regarding breeders at the time of this incident.
Willard had a barn full of dogs .
PSPCA stopped by and left on her door a written notice that she needed to contact them.
She ignored that notice.
When the PSPCA stopped by again, Willard began throwing rocks and screaming at the officers, behavior appropriate to Palestinian 10 year olds, not educated American women with animals in their care.
From that point on the whole thing became a a mad circus.
The key to this Pandora's box?
Had Willard been actually more concerned for her animals than for some unknown whacko anti-government anti-animal-rights agenda this all would have been sorted badda bing.
She wasn't.
As always, the dogs suffer, the breeder is an 'abused victim' and some 'special interest' attorney be chargin' $10,000 a month to 'sort it out'.

While the 'special interest' propaganda machine points the blame stick everywhere but where it belongs.

There are wonderful breeders/handlers and there are thugs.
Most lie somewhere in the middle.

The 'middle', though, serves no agenda or EITHER side of this issue.

Terry Ward

So, following your 'logic'..if I were to instigate a lawsuit against former President Bush for blowing up the Pentagon, would that mean he 'earned' it?

I think not.

Hopefully this lawsuit will reveal what many people close to this fiasco know...
that Willard is not all she claims to be.

As an 'animal interest' alliance I do find it curious that you choose to side on the interests of the owner.
Possibly a better name for your organization should be the National Property Owner's Interest Alliance.

That you all believe animals to be 'property' is no secret.

One wonders then, if animals are property, why are there laws against abusing them?

I cannot find one instance of anyone who has been arrested for abusing their coffee table.

Julian Prager

Terry - ignoring the facts and making up others does not help the discussion. Wendy was not a breeder and hadn't been one for some time. She was a pack owner who worked her dogs with others at hunts. Breeding had nothing to do with this as far as Wendy was concerned.

PSPCA left a business card in her door without anything else on it - no request for contact, nothing. Just as most people would with a random card stuck in her door, she ignored it.

If you weren't there, you cannot know what happened when they came back and neither can I. However, the fact that no assault charges were brought against her at least suggests there was insufficient evidence to support those allegations.

I don't know what "anti-government and anti-animal rights agenda" you think she was devoted to, but she was obviously devoted of protecting her constitutional rights. It is puzzling how you can think that PSPCA claiming dogs had Lyme's disease but not treating them for the disease and having them arrive at the rescue group they gave them to with undiagnosed and untreated URI's is proper care for any animal by the PSPCA. In fact both are potentially chargeable to PSPCA as animal cruelty under the PA cruelty law.

Barbara Reichman

Who is arguing? Did you even read the suit, or are you going by whatever version of the truth you read as a night time story?

Having a "barn full of dogs" is not a crime. Breeding a few litters over many years is not a crime. Ignoring a business card on your door is not a crime.

Willard concerned for her animals? Might I remind you that the dogs weren't suffering under Willard's care, but definitely suffered at the hands of PSPCA.

There are wonderful animal control officers and there are thugs. And sometimes they get caught and have to take responsibility for their thuggish actions.

Terry Ward

Having a barn full of dogs in Philadelphia and ignoring ANYTHING 'on the door'...or anywhere else... from the PSPCA is a crime of thoughtless stupidity.

Would you do that?

Would YOU risk your animals' well-being by ignoring a state or federal entity who governs...like it or not.. the ownership of your animals?
I think not.

Regardless of the spin you folks are trying to put on this, this was Willard's fault.
Had she conducted herself like a reasonable adult and not a brainless bimbo and handled this before it got out of hand, she would likely today be out there harassing helpless critters with her pack intact.

But she didn't, and isn't it convenient for all your little agendas?

Dr Arnold L. Goldman

The animal world seems to bring out the most extreme emotion in every side of every debate. Let's step back a bit.

None of us here, regardless of what we read or will read, get to determine the guilt or innocence of any party involved in this matter. Ms. Willard and the PSPCA will have their day in court and a judge and or jury will make a determination of fact and law. Debating it here further, is a waste of time.

Terry Ward

"Constitutional rights'?

'Property' again.
Same old libertarian canard.

Whenever I hear that in an argument concerning animals my snarkmeter begins to boil over.
Who gives a rat's a-- about their constitutional rights when the well-being of their animals is the issue?

This is not frigging North Korea.
If someone has their animals taken away then they have done something wrong.
And if, on the off-chance that they HAVEN'T-it would be all over the Internet like maggots on a mill-dog.

Next I expect to hear about the Great Vegan Conspiracy To Eliminate Agriculture.

Stop assuming everyone is stupid.

Terry Ward

Very true.
But the anti-animal propaganda machine is using this fiasco to further their lame agenda and we have decided not to take it lying down in our basket...so to speak.

National Animal Interest Alliance

Terry: while truly impressed by the effort you are putting into your ad hominem attacks upon Wendy Willard, the fact remains that it is the PSPCA facing the lawsuit, not Ms. Willard.

Dr. Goldman: thank you for your thoughtful contribution. While I am sure we will continue to debate this issue up to and well beyond the court date, you are correct that these issues bring out extremes of emotion. I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing, though. I consider it a testament to just how incredibly important animals and animal issues are to people.

Barbara Reichman

An interesting set of assumptions being laid out here. You comment, "...ignoring ANYTHING 'on the door'...or anywhere else... from the PSPCA is a crime of thoughtless stupidity." Why? Because they see themselves as all-powerful? Recent court cases suggest otherwise.

I'm asked, "Would YOU risk your animals' well-being by ignoring a state or federal entity who governs...like it or not.. the ownership of your animals?" No, I probably wouldn't. But PSPCA is not a federal or state entity that governs the ownership of my animals. Even if they were legitimately part of the government (and they're not), they still wouldn't govern my ownership.

I might even agree that this was handled badly, but I tend to find fault with the PSPCA folks. If they really wanted to have a conversation with Willard, they should have left a note saying so, not a business card. Or made a follow-up phone call. Or written a letter.

But the best is the last, "If someone has their animals taken away then they have done something wrong." Bingo. And there it is, in a nutshell. If you are accused, you MUST be guilty. Why bother with that pesky old judicial system when it just slows everything down?

Terry Ward

Ah Dr, Goldman...
'Animal Supremacists' huh?
Puppy-farms are 'sensationalist' constructs devised by 'animal rights' nutters, yes?
"Designed to evoke the emotion and image of cruelty"?
The IMAGE of cruelty?

With all due respect Sir, you do WHAT for a living?

We see you do come here all nicey-nicey and 'balanced' while spouting in backrooms the Great Vegan Conspiracy twaddle to any bozo with mashed banana for brains who will listen.
Makes me want to hug my vet.
My wonderful brilliant caring humane vet.

Terry Ward

Having your animals taken away, or your children or your car is not 'the judicial system'
It is some form of law enforcement.
Like it or not, guilt or innocence has nothing to do with it.

It is what allows the police to remove a child from a crack house or arrest a man who is threatening your neighbor's daughter.

The judicial system comes later.
Guilt or innocence is decided later.

It would be best to understand this when arguing these things to avoid sounding like Sarah Palin.

Terry Ward


One of the most widely misused terms on the Net is "ad hominem".
It is most often introduced into a discussion by certain delicate types, delicate of personality and mind, whenever their opponents resort to a bit of sarcasm.
As soon as the suspicion of an insult appears, they summon the angels of ad hominem to smite down their foes, before ascending to argument heaven in a blaze of sanctimonious glory. They may not have much up top, but by God, they don't need it when they've got ad hominem on their side. It's the secret weapon that delivers them from any argument unscathed.
The mere presence of a personal attack does not indicate ad hominem: the attack must be used for the purpose of undermining the argument, or otherwise the logical fallacy isn't there.
It is not a logical fallacy to attack someone; the fallacy comes from assuming that a personal attack is also necessarily an attack on that person's arguments."

National Animal Interest Alliance

Terry, if you slow down with the insults long enough to actually read Barbara's comment, you should be able to see she was talking about deciding guilt and innocence (see: "If you are accused, you MUST be guilty."), which is indeed part of the judicial process.

Also, with this: "the attack must be used for the purpose of undermining the argument, or otherwise the logical fallacy isn't there." you just proved yourself to be engaging in the ol' ad hominem fallacy.

Well, unless you were simply attacking Wendy Willard's character and mental faculties in order to be a big meanie, and not at all interested in pecking away at the credibility of the lawsuit against the PSPCA...

Terry Ward

Now we are playing semantics and I am not a lawyer.
Neither are you it would appear.
So this is hogwash.

Her dogs were taken by someone or something who thought she broke the law, and had some authority to do so. This is enforcement.

She went in front of a judge who made a ruling.
This is judicial.

I did not claim, not that it's relevant, that Willard was 'guilty'
I said she was thoughtlessly stupid in ignoring anything from anyone who has any power whatsoever over the fate of her dogs.

I will stand by that until it is proven otherwise.

Yes, my 'bias' is against her and for the dogs.
But my bias is neither salient nor relevant.

Terry Ward

For the sake of argument, I live in an urban location in a rented house, have neighbors and have six dogs.
I know that my animals live better that most humans on the planet, but do you know that?
Because I say it does it mean it' true?

Does ANYONE other than my vet and my closest friends know for certain how well my dogs are cared for?

I would no more ignore a visit or a 'card' from the PSPCA or the ASPCA or the HSUS or the dog catcher or the UPS guy for that matter than I would rip out an eyeball.
And I do not know anyone who truly cares for their animals who would.
Do you personally know anyone who would?

Terry Ward

By the way, I said " If someone has their animals taken away then they have done something wrong"

Nowhere did I use the word' guilty'
Semantics again.

If she is guilty the judicial system will decide that.
From what i understand, the original judge did.

Barbara Reichman

Hypothetical question: if the court rules against PSPCA and the individual employees, will you agree then that they acted badly? Outside the bounds of their authority and the law?

Terry Ward

Maybe... with two caveats.

The evidence against is overwhelming but she nevertheless walks.. ala Oj and Casey Anthony

She wins because of suppressed evidence, which is all too common and of which we will likely never know.

So the answer is yes and possibly no.

Terry Ward


Terry Ward

Non-hypothetical question:

Is there are reason why you omitted the fact that Willard's attorney is an NAIA board member?

Just Jes

As an ACO you absolutely must follow the letter of the law in how you handle a "potential" violation. ACO's must be accountable and not break rules, violate constitutional rights, etc, because when they do, even if the animals in question are at real risk, it means the ACO's become ineffective in protecting the very animals they sought to help.

We don't live in North Korea (thank GOD!). Where government is heavy handed and those they govern have no rights what so ever. In North Korea we wouldn't even be able to have this conversation. So again, I am thankful to live in the US. Being a citizen here guarantees we have protected constitutional rights. Governmental agencies in that respect must follow set laws and procedures to ensure that while upholding the law, they are not breaking it. Our forefathers put in place a system of checks and balances to ensure that governmental agencies or those given the power to enforce law, do not over step their authority while doing so.

A court of law and the PSPCA was given ample time to prove a case of abuse, neglect or even "over the limit law" against Ms. Willard. And under current Penn Law they were not able to prove a case against her. That is fact.

Now, the PSPCA and their practices and "potential" violations of the law are being called into question in this lawsuit. I look forward to seeing how the case resolves.

We cannot pick and choose which laws we uphold and which laws we allow to broken. There has to be mutual accountability on every one's part. Be it animal owner or animal control officer.

What we all know to be sad and true is that when people who hold positions of power and have been afforded the job to protect animals, they loose all their credibility when they fail to follow the very laws they are sworn to uphold.

We cannot simply throw law out the window when a crime is committed, be it against an animal or person and every accused person has the right to defend themselves in a court of law BEFORE final judgement is passed.

Wendy Willard was afforded that right as are those she now accuses.

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