For the the original blog on the disappearance of Bones click here. Fore more information on the Bones disaster please click here. And for still more click here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and finally here.
The Lexus Project has posted their thoughts on the death of Bones. This statement appeared on their public Facebook page on 9/29/2013.
Bones is dead. We exhumed his body. Please read.
On 9/29/2013 this statement was added "We didn't think it was necessary to announce who referred TLP to Kat, but apparently others disagree. One of the groups that referred her was "URGENT Ohio". They do advocate for dogs and they made a BIG mistake so please don't take way from what they do do. I'm sure they feel just as bad as we do, possibly worse since we are not an adoption or placement group and Bones was one of our very first non greyhound cases, we were led to believe that this was THE only place for Bones to go. As long as they learned from their mistake and sees now what a deadly mistake it was, there's no reason to undermine the good they do."
It will be interesting to see if a cause of death can be determined, starvation seems unlikely but certainly possible, however it stands to reason that there would be a substantial difference in weight between a living dog and a skeleton exhumed nine months later. The weight difference as the result of decomposition seems worth consideration.
The Lexus post discusses the two other dogs that Sutter claimed went missing from her operation. Lexus states that Sasha was shot in the head and buried in the yard and that Bear was buried in the yard as well. The Toledo Blade does not report these facts, only suspicions of these charges.
Apparently the Blade had a reporter and photographer on site when Bones skeleton was found but the article states that police were called only after the remains were found. Police refused to view the yard or the remains, this was an illegal search. What authority did the Lexus Project volunteers and the Toledo Blade's photographer and reporter have to be on the property? Would any evidence obtained by illegal search be of any use? I don't think so.
Take a look at the slide show provided by the Blade. What responsible legal organization would send a designated dangerous dog to this tiny home on a street of small yards without fences, to live in a garage with fifteen other designated dangerous dogs? Lexus Project did. It must be kept in mind that the Lexus Project has initiated an effort similar to the one used to "save" Bones. This time they want to save Onion, a dog that killed the grandchild of the owner. If they "save" Onion will they use more care in selecting a long term dangerous dog facility than they did when they chose the North West Ohio Underdog Rescue?
Did the Lexus Project "save" Bones? Even if Sutter had been the lion tamer that the Lexus Project thought she was, is living out the rest of the dog's life in a little garage behind a tiny home in Toledo Ohio really living? Would this "life" be significantly better than humane euthanization in New York? Will this mess be repeated with Onion?
What about Onion? What has been the quality of his life since the death of Jeremiah Eskew-Shanahan who was attacked and killed by this dog at the toddler's first birthday party in the spring of 2012?
This is Onion, this is how he has "lived" for the last year and a half. Is this "living"? The Lexus Project is responsible for this.
The Lexus Project works hard to rescue Greyhounds and this is a commendable effort, I respect this greatly. I can't respect the meddling in vicious dog dispositions. This should be a local matter, decided by those close to the investigations and having a stake in the community, without the bullying by out of state animal rights lawyers. The interstate transport of violent dogs should be regulated by federal law.
For video of the former site of North West Ohio Underdog Rescue and the current location of this "rescue" please click here. Note that the Lexus Project is now trying to get a court order to dig at the Luann Ave. location. A bit late. It should also be noted that the Lexus Project no longer owns Bones, he was signed over to a local bully rescue group in April.
Update 10/1/2013 The New York Times quotes veterinarian Stephen Graber as stating “I can’t positively say he was starved, but I would bet he was in an extreme state of malnutrition.” Malnutrition is inferred from skeletal measurements, the malnourished do not grow to expected size. This was a massive adult dog and there is no proof of, or reason to believe that the dog was sick or starved. This is not the cause of death that the Lexus Project hoped for.
Per the Times article, Robin Mittasch of the Lexus Project organized the dig at the Luann Ave. property although the Lexus Project no longer owned the dog and had no legal authority to be on that property. Did she think to run this idea past her husband, Rich Rosenthal the attorney? Can you imagine the breakfast table conversation? "Rich, I'm thinking about organizing some of our volunteers to trespass and dig up a property in Toledo Ohio. An illegal search for the remains of a dog we don't own. What do you think?"