This is a veterinarian who should never have been a veterinarian. He was a failure from the beginning as far as I am concerned. This veterinarian worked in the United Kingdom. He is Gary Samuel, 49, and his assistant is Rochelle McEwan, 28. Both have been found guilty of animal cruelty offences after police found 30 dogs and cats in the back room of their clinic in a squalid basement with no access to water or food and in faeces-covered rooms.
Predominantly dogs are involved but there are cats as well. Most of the dogs were huskies and they were found in a pitch-black dungeon which was accessible by a trapdoor that had been covered by a carpet.
Samuel and McEwan have been convicted of six offences under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 at Leeds magistrates Court.
It would seem that the RSPCA discovered the abuse of these animals inadvertently because they attended the clinic on another matter but then found the animals in cages in a back room and in the vet’s living quarters and as mentioned in the basement.
Most of the dogs were found in the basement living in pitch black conditions. There were faeces everywhere. Most of the cats were shut in one room which was also covered with faeces.
The other matter about which the RSPCA was visiting the clinic was also a bit bizarre because we are told that Samuel was threatening his assistant with a hammer. Clearly this was a workplace that had gone completely awry. Removed from the clinic were 22 dogs and a cats. Five of them have sadly been euthanized on the advice of another veterinarian. All of the dogs bar four have been signed over to the RSPCA. The remaining four are in the care of the RSPCA pending sentencing of these criminals. Six of the cats have been rehomed as have 15 dogs.
Samuel and McEwan were in a relationship. They lived above the practice. They were both in a position of trust with respect to their clients and their patients. They were obviously in profound breach of that trust. For a veterinarian and a veterinary assistant to be engaged in this sort of animal abuse clearly indicates that they are and were unsuited to their work.
Until this secret of horrific abuse was discovered, customers were visiting the clinic as it was a totally normal veterinary clinic with no idea what was happening in the basement.
Samuel and McEwan were found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering and failing to meet the needs of the animals in their care. They will be sentenced at Leeds’ magistrates Court next month.
This UK case echoes some of the cases around the world including in America where veterinarians have exposed themselves through their actions as being unsuited to their profession of choice. I hate to say it but I would argue that any American veterinarian who promotes declawing of cats and who carries the operation out for the convenience of his/her clients is also unsuited to the profession. Believe me there are many thousands of veterinarians like this.
The well-known and notorious Kristen Lindsey is another veterinarian who comes to mind as being wholly unsuited to her chosen profession. Greater care needs to be taken by veterinary schools before enrolling students to check that they are psychologically suitable. A key element of the profession is the attitude of the individual towards animals. They need to have compassion and tenderness towards animals coupled with a great willingness to assist and improve the welfare of the animals concerned.
The source of this article is the Times newspaper dated Saturday, 23 January 2016.