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Oreo Is Dead

By A. G. SULZBERGER For The New York Times

Oreo, a dog that was nursed back to health after surviving being thrown off the roof of a six-story building, was killed Friday by lethal injection.

A two-year-old pit bull, Oreo was euthanized inside the New York City headquarters of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, after the organization rebuffed last-minute pleas to spare its life. The organization called the dog a danger to the public.

On Friday morning, Oreo received a last meal of “premium quality” kibble and canned dog food. She was then given a sedative to keep calm during the procedure and brought into a small room used inside the headquarters for behavioral analysis. Oreo was then injected in the leg with an overdose of sodium pentobarbital and was pronounced dead shortly after 3 p.m.

Oreo was the 107th dog euthanized at the facility this year, through October.

Oreo’s case came to public attention in June when his owner, Fabian Henderson, threw him off the roof of his apartment building in the Red Hook Houses in Brooklyn. Mr. Henderson was convicted of animal cruelty and is scheduled to be sentenced in December.

Oreo broke two legs in the fall. News reports of the incident, accompanied by photos of the brown and white dog with his front legs in casts, triggered a flood of adoption offers and financial donations to help pay for the medical care.

However, as the dog recuperated from those physical injuries under the care of the ASPCA, the dog was increasingly viewed as much a danger – difficult to control and “unpredictably aggressive,” according to an organization spokesmen.

News of Oreo’s death provoked angry reactions among supporters who had been frantically lobbying the ASPCA to delay the euthanization, to allow time to negotiate a deal to transfer Oreo to an animal sanctuary in the Hudson Valley.

In one appeal, Camille Hankins, the director of Win Animal Rights, sent an email message to the ASPCA begging for clemency and accusing the organization of completing “what the animal abuser who threw her off that Brooklyn roof top, set out to do.” Protesters also gathered briefly at the headquarters Friday morning.

The ASPCA rejected those pleas, citing the evaluation of staff and an outside veterinary behaviorist that Oreo simply could not be rehabilitated. “Animal cruelty isn’t pretty and doesn’t always have a happy ending,” said the society’s president and chief executive, Ed Sayres, “It is ugly and sad and, ultimately, tragic.”

The dog’s former owner, Mr. Henderson, was not on hand to witness his pet’s final moments.

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Lorie Ferguson
Lorie Ferguson
11 years ago

How very very sad this poor animal had to come to such an untimely death. I hope the owner suffers for a very long time. There should be a screening process for people to own animals. It's a responsibility and commitment that unfortunately a lot of people don't think through before they get a pet.

Lorie Ferguson
Lorie Ferguson
11 years ago

How very very sad this poor animal had to come to such an untimely death. I hope the owner suffers for a very long time. There should be a screening process for people to own animals. It's a responsibility and commitment that unfortunately a lot of people don't think through before they get a pet.

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