Group claims PETA shelter euthanized nearly 2,000 animals in 2013

Animal rights organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has certainly made a controversial name for itself over the years.

From eyebrow-raising ads of naked celebrities to supporting the notorious Animal Liberation Front — a group that has been responsible for arson, firebombs, and death threats — PETA and their president Ingrid Newkirk certainly aren’t afraid to stir the pot. Just last week, the group took some flak for passing out pamphlets depicting cows being electrocuted at a Los Angeles elementary school.

But today, the organization has once again found itself the subject of controversy after an annual review revealed their Norfolk, Va., euthanasia numbers.

According to a report released by The Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) last week, PETA euthanized 1,792 cats and dogs at its shelter in 2013 alone — that’s roughly 82 percent of the animals they took in during that calendar year, and an average of five animals killed per day. The CCF claims the numbers come straight from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, which requires all shelters to disclose their numbers for the year.

According to the official numbers from the VDACS, a total of 1805 dogs, cats, and other companion animals were euthanized by the PETA facility in 2013. That breaks down to approximately 81 percent.

“The delusional animal rights group is talking out of both sides of its mouth — on one side preaching animal rights, while on the other signing the death warrant of 82 percent of cats and dogs in its care,” says CCF Senior Research Analyst Will Coggins.

Though PETA operates under a $32 million budget, and though Newkirk once told The Virginian-Pilot the shelter could “become a no-kill shelter immediately,” but it would mean they “wouldn’t do as much work,” the organization’s pet shelter has euthanized over 31,000 animals since 1998.

PETA insists the euthanized animals were unadoptable, and instead has chosen to focus on the adoptable pets their shelter has to offer. The organization also documents its work in a new video.

“The nearly 400 adoptable animals PETA received were placed in carefully screened, permanent homes or transferred to the Virginia Beach SPCA and other high-traffic open-admission shelters for a chance to be adopted,” PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch said in a statement.

This isn’t the first time PETA’s animal shelter has come under fire. In June 2005, two PETA employees were arrested after they were caught dumping the bodies of euthanized animals in a North Carolina supermarket dumpster. They were charged with multiple counts of felony animal cruelty, but found not guilty.

Sources:, The Daily Mail,

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