Fourth Dog Dies in HSUS Custody

We wrote recently of the three Great Danes being held by HSUS in a secret location since a June seizure in New Hampshire, including one that had died of painful intestinal bloat. News broke over the weekend that a fourth dog, a 15-month-old puppy, has died while in HSUS custody.

The cause is yet to be determined, but so far the story is questionable. Apparently, the dog died in its sleep. Does that make sense for an animal only 15 months old?

Additionally, the state—which we can extrapolate to mean the vets and vet techs at the HSUS site—apparently thought the dog was 3 years old, when it was only 15 months old. How does that mistake get made?

We suspect the cause of death may again be related to bloat, which is a common occurrence in Great Danes. Bloat can be prevented by feeding modest portions to the dogs several times a day (as opposed to large portions), preventing stress after a large meal, and monitoring the dogs for symptoms of bloat, such as retching or signs of pain.

Did HSUS have 24/7 monitoring of the dogs? With $50 million sitting in the Caribbean, HSUS can certainly afford it. If the dog died in its sleep—especially if it was related to painful bloat—someone should have noticed.

We’ll be on the lookout for more details, but one thing seems clear: The group that calls itself the leading provider of animal care in the U.S. is failing to live up to its own hype.

Posted on 11/14/2017 at 9:55 am by Humane Watch Team.

Topics: Courtroom Drama


  • laurelladesborough

    Sounds like these animal rights idiots don’t know much about Great Danes…so can they be sued for abuse? Sounds like a good idea to me.

    • kasualobserver

      they no little to nothing about any breed! most have a very limited amount of thime they spend with the animals and I would venture to guess, the areas these dogs are in only gets cleaned once a day and more than likely, they only get fed/watered once a day, otherwise, why the ‘secret location’? answer… they don’t want people taking videos of the lack of care they are getting and as long as they have a vet… or two… to side with them, ($$$??), we may never know the entire real story.

      • Jane

        More likely they are filling to the brim the livestock buckets they received and call them “Specialised” containers, with dry kibble so the dogs can have full access to food and water, all they can eat = death for these dogs..

  • Deb Harlow

    I am not a fan or supporter of HSUS by any means. I have done rescue for over 13 years. In fact if someone says “oh you save dogs? I love animals too and give to HSUS” I tell them all the reasons to support a local Humane Society or Rescue Group instead.
    In my experience it IS common for ages to be estimated incorrectly by vets, shelters and volunteers — particularly between 1-1/2 and 3 years old. Both are young adults. It’s not a big leap at all.

  • help4all

    I don’t know the situation these dogs were in but if the dogs are dying in HSUS care would it have “maybe” been better to leave them with their owner and work with them. You don’t take something into your care to protect it and than have them continue to die in your care.

  • Sarah Conant

    While the vets are likely uneducated about their needs, bloat is NOT preventable! There are recommendations on methods to reduce the risk but bloat can occur even on an empty stomach, there is no rhyme or reason to it and it also happens to active, healthy danes. Although I do not know the health background of the 15 month old, I know more young adult Danes die from heart issues than bloat, this is a breed predisposed to those health issues.

    • ejstruan

      However, it is frequently recoverable. There’s no indication they are trying … certainly not from the dead silence of the expert veterinary staff.

  • laurelladesborough

    Here is my problem. I see many cases where “humanes” go out and confiscate, (they call it rescue), birds, animals, herps, even farm animals, and in the process they damage them because they don’t even know how to collect them responsibly. Some are killed during these confiscations. Some die afterwards due to inappropriate care and housing. Now, IF an owner can be charged with abuse, why cannot these “humanes” be charged with abuse and cruelty when the confiscated animals end up damaged and often times dead????? If it works for owners, it should work for these rescuers…IF they don’t know how to collect critters, they probably don’t know abuse or cruelty either so how do they have ANY credibility???

  • MisterCadet

    Exactly. HSUS claims to provide “direct care” to more animals than any other animal organization. In reality, HSUS doesn’t provide what 95% of donors assume when they read the words “direct care.” HSUS doesn’t provide full-time care/housing to a single dog or cat anywhere in the world. HSUS’s “pet wellness clinics” are community events HSUS “helps coordinate.” To be incredibly generous, I will see that HSUS’s assistance is INDIRECT care. Too bad they hoodwinked the local authorities in New Hampshire and the media everywhere. What a mess HSUS has made of this case.