During my working life, I wore 2 hats. One was with BBC Radio, the other was in the legal profession. But both overlapped in so far as I was trained to carry out full research on a subject, check the wording of whatever I wrote and include references where possible to substantiate my claims. This work has stood me in good stead, especially publicising some dishonest working practices by a firm of solicitors which I, with the help of the BBC, exposed on television. There was nothing the solicitors could do about it because the report was full of fact and backed up, and also passed by the BBC legal department.
So when a post is published on one of my facebook pages which is libellous, completely unfabricated and with no proof of the claims made, I see RED!
The accusation was made by someone who does not, as far as I am reliably informed, have a podenco, has not been to Spain, has not visited a perrera, has not met most if not all the podencos for which she raises funds to release from death row. As far as the word on the jungle telegraph also goes, some of the adoptions of these dogs have been unsuccessful and because there is no backup in the countries if a problem should arise, other rescue associations have had to step in to help the podencos – the innocent victims.
This week this person made a libellous attack on one of my facebook pages against a couple who have been fostering and rehoming podencos from an established recognised and respected animal rescue association for several years. Indeed, their story is one of the first ones to be published on my weblog Podenco Post. This couple drive from the UK to Europe usually at their own expense,to collect the podencos, which have full Pet Passports, and take them back home to foster and assess their characters. Once this is done, they are very careful about placing the podencos in forever homes. Should a problem arise which cannot be foreseen, the podenco returns to them.
If they can recoup some of their travel expenses, so much the better to help fund the next trip.
Not content with this, another post was published by the same person which was inflammatory against the rescue association/refuge.
I deleted both these posts.
To accuse these people of importing dogs to sell to gypsies as bait for dog fighting, without substantive proof, is libellous. I have demanded she apologise which she refuses to do.
Add to this, she has also set herself up as an authority on podencos. A recent post claimed that all podencos are trainable! The danger with such claims is that, again, a podenco is homed and there are problems when the adoptant finds that ‘not all podencos are trainable’. Some can never be let off leash outside of a very secure garden. She claims ‘I could write a book about it’. Really, what exactly about, with what authority?
Over the last couple of years, as the plight of the podencos has overloaded on publicity on facebook – good for the podencos in one respect but bad when inexperienced people think they can rescue and rehome them easily and without experience of the breed. I acknowledge that these people have big hearts and want to help the puppies and young hounds on death row in the perreras.
But instead they should focus and channel their help to recognised and established podenco rescue associations whose refuges are overflowing with podencos already saved and waiting for forever homes. Home these hounds and it makes room for a dog from a perrera. Don’t focus on dogs in a perrera which have never been in foster, never known living in a house, aren’t toilet trained, possibly already have leishmania or ehrlichia...
I know it’s hard to do that. My heart breaks every week at the number of dogs in perreras – the sheer waste of life and mountain of a problem for the hunting dogs in Spain.
But let’s get our priorities right. Help the hounds already saved and in foster and refuges...
And don’t be so arrogant as to make libellous accusations against those who have been working for years helping these hounds.
Don’t add your name to the list of keyboard bullies on facebook.