Lux, The Cat Labelled “Violent” Taken to Oregon Shelter

lux so called violent cat

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

The so called “violent” cat, Lux, who held his family hostage on March 9, has been turned in to the Multnomah County Animal Shelter (MCAS). KGW Channel 8 News out of Portland broke the news March 17. I report this to the PoC family with great sadness today.

This situation has created mass hysteria in the cat world, mainly because Lux’s owners, Lee Palmer and Teresa Barker, were adamant Lux would remain with the family. They did state that therapy might be a solution for Lux, who trapped his family (including the family dog) in a bedroom after having his tail pulled and being kicked by Palmer. The couples 7-month-old toddler was scratched by the family cat after the child pulled his tail. For some reason, Palmer decided to kick the cat, and was shocked when the cat fought back.

To hear the family and their excuses for dumping Lux at the Multnomah shelter, the cat is only there for an evaluation. Palmer insinuates he has called in professional help to deal with his cat’s emotional problems. In other words, the shelter situation is temporary, Lux is not up for adoption, and will be home in the near future.

There’s been a lot of hate radiating on Palmer’s Facebook page, with the majority stemming from Lux being kicked after the 22-pound Himalayan defended himself after being physically harmed. Shouldn’t a cat be expected to defend itself in order to make the pain stop?

Lux at Multnomah County Animal Shelter (MCAS)

This situation is sad all the way around. Jackson Galaxy has offered to help with Lux, what I’d expect to be mediation between cat and owner. Not only that, rescues and individuals from throughout the U.S. have offered to take Lux in until a loving home can be found. I apologize, but a home where the family cat has it’s tail pulled and is physically abused isn’t a loving home. If either of the owners or their child had been kicked, someone would be going to jail on criminal domestic violence charges.

It’s likely a thin line for the Portland police on whether Palmer could legally be charged with animal cruelty. I feel sure from following his Facebook page that Palmer doesn’t believe he’s done anything wrong. Neither did his offspring do anything wrong. There’s a balance that must be considered when a cat and a small child share the home. Both must be monitored and taught to respect each other. That universal word “aannkkkk” seems to do the trick, whether spoken to a child or an animal. Try it when your own child (or cat) is about to do something you’d rather they don’t do.

Everyone needs to consider Lux a bit more. You don’t take a cat you care for to a shelter and just drop them off. There are diseases that are easily picked up in even the best maintained shelters in the U.S. Infections such as feline panleuk, calicivirus and upper respiratory infections spread quickly, especially when dealing with a stressed cat. There’s no way Lux isn’t under stress in a shelter environment. Shelter’s are noisy, with dogs barking day and probably during the night, while the staff is gone.

I did a bit of research into MCAS, and found they’re the only open door shelter in Portland. They’re the primary agency for lost pet care, animal abuse situations and animal rescue. Nothing on their website mentions evaluation services.

I’m curious how the readers here feel about this latest development? Do you believe Lux is really in a shelter for an “evaluation.” Has the family actually given him up and had hoped the news media wouldn’t learn about this tragedy (to me, that’s what this is). Or do you believe Lux is just there for a cooling off period until the family decides what to do with this poor cat. Please leave a comment on what you believe is really going on between Lux and his family.


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Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

43 thoughts on “Lux, The Cat Labelled “Violent” Taken to Oregon Shelter”

  1. Lux is described as a Himalayan?

    I’m pretty sure that given the right owner and environment he would be less stressed and less likely to have a hissy fit.

    Mr Minns bit the vet last night, but Minns was getting stressed and he gave a warning (which the vet missed) and I said he was warning he would bite (which the vet also missed!) so he then gave a very quick warning bite (which broke skin as the vet pulled away). However that’s what a stressed cat will do if there’s no escape route and the warning signs are ignored. He’s also a one-person cat. Back home without any stressors he was back to his snuggly, cheerful self. Maybe Lux falls into the same category.

        1. Thanks, Michael. I did miss Pam’s comment.
          Did some investigating and, yes, this is a county shelter, no different than any other kill shelter. And, they have a 70% euthanasia rate!
          I won’t go into how my blood is boiling, because I’m sure you know. I’m furious at these “owners”. Lux is going to be killed. Maybe not today, but soon…
          Elisa must have been terribly misinformed.

          1. I was going by the comments on Facebook. A lot of kill shelters are thought no kill. People in Greenville are under the illusion its no kill. Now I need to find those posts and tell the people Lux is at a high kill shelter. Usually any who advertise open door are

            1. Good. Thanks.
              And, it pisses me off that the only way to contact them is by phone. You bettcha that I’ll be dialing tomorrow.
              I can’t describe what I would like to do to Mr. Asshole Palmer right now!
              Sorry, Michael. You know how I feel about kill shelters.

          2. If Lux is killed I hope there is an uproar of disapproval. Of course it will all fade away once it is no longer newsworthy and another cat will have been killed for no reason.

  2. No warm and fuzzy feelings here.

    Sorry to be so pessimistic but, in my opinion,

    These people took Lux to the shelter for “evaluation” in hopes of quieting the public outcry.

    These people do not want a positive outcome for Lux or else they would have spent the $$ for a valid evaluation or would have rehomed him to one of a multitude of people interested.

    An “evaluation” will most likely be done by the shelter vet and, possibly, an independent vet being called in (again, to try to appease the public).

    Lux will be deemed unsuitable to remain in the “owners” home or to be adopted.

    Lux will be euthanized as a dangerous cat. If that isn’t justifiable criteria for the no kill shelter to kill Lux, they will call a kill shelter to take him. That’s how it works here, mainly, to relieve overcrowding in no kill shelters. In that way, they can still claim to be no kill.

    1. Forgot…

      I think they blew off Jackson Galaxy’s offer because they really aren’t interested in trying to keep Lux and may be afraid that more truths about them will be revealed.

      1. Absolutely correct. Jackson Galaxy would have spoken the truth and he knows that the problem emanates from the behaviour of the people that care for this cat or a least, that is the highly likely source of the problem. The cat’s owners have made a strange decision in handing over their cat to a cat shelter. The handover was not done with the intention of the cat being re-homed as I understand it.

    2. These people do not want a positive outcome for Lux

      Agreed. I wasn’t sure of the reason why this cat was handed to a cat shelter but as you wisely say they probably want a bad outcome to pass the buck, to get rid of the problem. It is almost a physical act of passing the buck and getting rid of the problem that is causing them to receive internet criticisms.

  3. I’m glad the cat is out of that home. Those people are toxic. I’m sure that wasn’t the first time that cat was abused by the toddler or the father. I hope a rescue or a kind individual will step up for the cat now.

    1. You and I both know the reason behind this problem: the cat’s owners. Everyone who knows cats knows that. The only people who don’t know it are the people who own the cat. Thank you for visiting and commenting.

  4. It’s “just a cat”- It’s outrageous how some people think like this. Why they turned down that precious gift that Jackson Galaxy offered is a CRIME. Yes, a crime!

    Makes me sick to my stomach. It is unspeakable.

    1. A good 50% or more of the population of the world think that a cat “is just a cat”. It is a very negative saying and a hopeless one in respect of the welfare of the domestic cat. You will never have good cat guardianship for a person who thinks a cat is just a cat.

    1. I agree, Natalie. I know it sounds harsh but it is the cat’s owners who need to seek a bit of therapy. Once again this story is actually about people and a cat is caught in the crossfire.

  5. Ruth aka Kattaddorra

    I hate those ‘owners’ Why the hell couldn’t they just let Lux go to someone who would love him and treat him kindly?They’ve had plenty of offers, but no they have to show he is their ‘possession’ and be spiteful and pretend the cat is going to the shelter for evaluation.
    I just hope they don’t get him back to go on abusing him. If they were so scared of him that they had to shut their stupid selves away and phone the police then they obviously shouldn’t be allowed within a mile of any cat.

  6. yea it sucks:( i hope bad karma hits them majorally. Its just makes me so mad when animals are abused in this way.

  7. I hate people – that poor cat. If something bad happens to that cat I truly hope that the familly who did this to Lux suffers threats and provocations for the rest of their stupid lives. I also hope they never sleep comfortably at night again in fear some crazy animal activists will come and skin them alive in their sleep.

    1. You are definitely a candidate for the living in the middle of Siberia like that lady we discussed about a month ago . I confess that I have similar feelings about people when I read stories like this and, you know, that this is a high profile story but I am convinced that there are many hundreds of thousands of similar stories that are never reported.

        1. The word or phrase “no-kill” is very flexible in the world of animal shelters. The management make it mean what they want to make it mean so at the end of the day nobody quite knows what it does mean.

  8. Yea its very sad. I do hope some responsible loving person can take this lovely cat to a forever home. Its very destressing. Feel so sad for cat.

  9. Bad news for me and millions of other people who genuinely care for cat welfare.

    You don’t take a cat you care for to a shelter and just drop them off. There are diseases that are easily picked up

    Good point. Lux’s owners are just not switched on. They have a poor attitude to cat caretaking and they are digging a hole for themselves and their cat.

    The fright the cat will get in being in a strange place in a cage will make him aggressive again (potentially). Lux needs the opposite: calm and TLC.

    It breaks your heart to read about this. If he is aggressive in the shelter might they decide to euthanise? No idea. But they have the equipment and they are used to doing it. Not a good situation.

    Lux could have been adopted by one of thousands offering to look after him. Far better solution, obviously. The Palmers are just doing it all wrong.

    1. I don’t believe the shelter would dare euthanize him. His fame may have saved his life as far as euthanasia. I just wonder whether the owners were being secretive until news media jumped on this.

      1. It is seems extraordinary to me that he has been taken to a shelter when there were obvious better options: rehoming direct. People are gagging to look after this cat.

        Perhaps this is a very good shelter where he is safe and content. I doubt that.

        1. Michael, this is a public shelter and it is definitely not a “no-kill.” Check their website – the following numbers for 2013 cat intake and disposition are posted: Intake: 4,324. Euthanized: 1,538; Euthanized at vet: 48. Escaped/stolen: 3. Died in cage: 10. Died at vet: 1. They don’t have too bad a record for adoptions (700+) and transfers (hopefully to other rescues/shelters that ARE no-kill), but 1,586 total euthanized isn’t “no-kill.”

          1. Glad you cleared that up Pam. From reading their comments it looked like a no kill. Some people even think the shelter we pulled from was no kill but more than 30% never made it out

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