I find that I absolutely must speak out on behalf of Marina Baktis from Mutts and Moms in Pasadena given the shaft she is presently getting from the press as a result of Ellen Degeneres' "Faux Paw".
I am disgusted by the hate mail and posts I am reading everywhere that are attacking this woman, Marina Baktis of Mutts & Moms.org, for doing the right and responsible thing.
Marina Baktis is not cruel nor heartless, but instead one of the most responsible dog adoption agency owners I have ever dealt with. And, I have dealt with many- including shelters, humane societies and other dog adoption agencies.
Above: Marina, lovingly holding who is now my dog, Indie, at her store in Pasadena last May.
At Mutts and Moms.org they care so much about the placement of the dogs, and are so concerned about people who may simply 'give the dog away to god knows who' if they can't deal with it, that they make it very clear in their contract that the dog MUST be returned to them so they can be assured of placing it in the "right" great home. Ms. Baktis is extra stringent in finding the best homes for dogs because she loves them so very much.
Do you know how many people treat adopted dogs like crap??
Or fail to consider things in the environment that may be wrong for the dog like other pets or ruthless kids or the neighborhood or the hours kept by the owners, etc.?
Do you know how many people just give them away to others who say they can care for the dog, but really can't?
Why do you think we have so many dogs in shelters!?
Portia de Rossi clearly signed the contract -and no doubt had lengthy discussions with Marina, who, I know, from personal experience, makes it very clear that Mutts and Moms takes it upon themselves to be responsible for the dog's happiness if the adopter cannot keep the dog for whatever reason. And that's no easy feat. Marina puts the dog's needs FIRST over crying kids and weepy talk show hosts.
Marina Baktis didn't interview this 'hairdresser' or go see the home or the other dog that lives there to make sure Iggy would be safe and happy...therefore she cannot -in good conscience leave the dog there. Don't people understand that?
Sure, I love Ellen like the rest of America, but she's not trained to recognize the best home for a dog! She couldn't even keep Iggy herself! That says something right there.
Why didn't she (or Portia) just tell Marina that she may have found an appropriate family for the dog and let Mutts and Moms interview the family themselves?
I personally adopted my fabulous dog from Marina Baktis last May and I was so impressed by her deep concern and need to know all details before releasing the dog to me. She continued to e-mail me and stay in touch after the adoption to make sure Indie was (and is) happy.
Unfortunately, a few tears from Ellen and pics of sad kids' faces have turned the public against one of the kindest, most giving and responsible dog lovers in this country. After all, Marina devotes her life to finding homes for dogs. And good homes at that!
above: photo by Monika Hummer
Above: My happy dog Indie who I adopted from Mutts and Moms in May of 2007.
And who turns 1 year old today!!!!!
Happy Birthday Indie!
Addendum 10/19/07: Clearly this post, as well as the accompanying comments on here and on other blogs, have hit many nerves and upset many people. No, I am not aware of all of the details concerning this situation. Nor am I privy to the conversations that have gone on between the involved individuals. So, perhaps it was unwise of me to address this issue at all.
I have been called an apologist, a nazi and accused of personal attacks without rational substantiation. Clearly, not my intention. I merely put this post up initially to illustrate that I, personally, had a wonderful experience with Mutts and Moms who now has to close their doors on a benevolent and much-needed service.
I am sorry for all the parties involved in this. And sadly, there is no 'winner'.