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The DoveLewis Emergency Animal Clinic is only interested in helping companion pets despite, their "relationship' with the Portland Audubon Society. More help is needed for wildlife!! Please Help!!
Dear concerned animal advocates,

I feel it is my duty to inform you of a very unfortunate situation that occurred at the DoveLewis Animal Emergency Clinic on NW Pettygrove in Portland on July 10th 2006.
As my family and I went for a casual stroll through the neighborhood park we discovered an injured crow fledgling. It appeared to have a broken wing and a possible broken leg as well. We took it to the Portland Audubon Society only to realize that they were closed, and that their overnight animal box was no longer a continuing practice. There was a sign however, directing those with injured animals to bring them to the DoveLewis Emergency Animal Care Center on NW Pettygrove St.
I brought the injured fledgling to the care center. As I was waiting in the lobby, a confrontation was occurring between a nurse technician and a citizen who apparently brought in an injured bat. The nurse had just relayed the news that the bat was to be destroyed, and that there was nothing anyone could do. The citizen was explaining that the bat had an injury do to a crash in to a wall, and that the "neuro problems" they were witnessing were a result. The nurse said that even though she witnessed the accident there was no way to be sure if the bat was rabid or not, therefore had to be put down by law. When I approached the front desk a very disgruntled tech asked me what assistance was needed. I explained to them the situation. Unnerved by what I had just witnessed, I first asked what their policy was regarding custody of the bird. They were not very forth coming, only to say that an evaluation would have to be made. They did state that their goal would be to determine whether they could stabilize the animal, and that if they could, they would, and that they would keep the animal in safe keeping overnight until it could be turned over to the Audubon for further care and evaluation. It was at this very sudden moment, before I could say anything, a nurse tech rushed out to the lobby and confiscated the box.
After a while, a different nurse tech approached me and explained that bird had been evaluated, and that the injuries the fledgling had endured would probably not allow the bird to fly again. I then asked, if they would still turn the bird over to the Audubon society since it was not in immediate peril. They told me that they would not. With the apparent disorganization of the facility at the time, as well as my knowledge of common fledgling injuries, I did not feel satisfied with this response and proceeded to request for the fledgling to be returned to me immediately so that I could personally take it to the Audubon in the morning. They refused, claiming that this would be an "illegal" practice. I asked once again for the bird to be returned to me. They said no. I then explained my frustration of why... when I specifically asked what their policy was... that they were not forth coming and took the bird before I could say anything. Another tech at this point told me to calm down, which I was... up until the very moment he made his statement. The conversation then became a heated argument. They then said they would talk with a superior, and had me wait in another room. A few minutes later a veterinarian doctor approached me and introduced herself. She explained that she personally evaluated the bird, and that its injuries were most likely repairable, and that they would turn it over to the Audubon in the morning. She in fact assured me of this repeatedly. Feeling like I was being placated, I then asked why this explanation was completely different from the one given before. She explained that she didn't know why, only to say that she was the first "actual" veterinarian to examine the bird and she didn't know who examined it previously. I then explained that I no longer trusted their explanations, and requested once again for the bird to be returned to me. She then reiterated the fact that they would not give the bird back and that if I did not leave they would call the police. I then made one final request. I said that I would leave if the hospital would publish a public disclaimer in their lobby (FOR ALL TO SEE) that any native/ or non native animal received on behalf of the Audubon Society would not be returned under any circumstances. I also explained that their office was misleading, and that citizens have the right to know their policies (that they were consistently claiming to be actual law) before making a decision. She was flabbergasted by my request and told me she would not and could not fulfill this request. At this point she stormed out of the room, where as the original nurse tech came back in to take her place. This time she told me that the bird was now apparently sick, giving me yet another complete opposite evaluation of what was just previously given by the vet. The nurse tech proceeded to ask me to leave threatening to call the police. I said I would leave but that I wanted the name of the veterinarian so that I could lodge a formal complaint. She said that she would not give me her name and that I could get that information back at the front desk. When I approached the front desk another nurse technician was already on the phone with the police.
I waited outside for the police to arrive. When the officer arrived he immediately went to speak with the office. He then came back outside to speak with me. He was very nice, and asked me my side of the story . I explained what had occurred, and why I was frustrated. He sympathized with my story somewhat, but explained that they were not going to give the bird back and that there was nothing he or I could do. He then asked me what I wanted him to do. I asked if he would get the name of the doctor on duty so I could lodge a proper complaint. He then went back in and made the request. When he returned, he gave me back a card for their general compliant number, explaining that they did not want to give the Doctors name. He then took my name, birth date and address. In conclusion, he asked if I was satisfied with my police service...gritting my teeth, I answered yes.
The next morning I made a call to the Portland Audubon Society. I spoke with a very nice animal care representative there. I asked her what the usual policy regarding overnight care of injured animals at the DoveLewis Center was. She stated that if the animal was stable, they are supposed to hold the animal over night until the Audubon can retrieve it the next morning for further evaluation. After describing the apparent injuries of the baby crow she stated that she felt that their would have been a good chance that they would have been able to help in the recovery. She also seemed shocked by my story, and said that she would place a call to the center to check the status of the fledgling and to see if she could arrange a pick up. She also said that I could call back later in the afternoon to get an update. When I called back she gave me the unfortunate news that the fledgling had been destroyed by the DoveLewis Animal Center.
I beg any and all caring citizens to contact the Dove Lewis Animal Center and request public notice of their policies, and question their contradictory methods of practice. I also ask that you would contact the Portland Audubon society and request that their code of ethics and practices be held to standard with any and all other institutions that work in solidarity for the cause.

Roz Readel, LVT 503/535-3391 (ext38) fax: 503/535-3394 email:  rreadel@dovelewis.org
1984 NW Pettygrove
Portland, OR 97209

POrtland Audubon:

phone: phone: 503/880-8362

Dove Lewis SUCKS. 12.Jul.2006 20:04

disgruntled and hating them

I am appalled to learn of this. And I would add that if you have an injured wild animal, be very, very careful about where you take it. If you can treat it yourself, you could be better off doing so. Any animal considered a "vector" (skunk, raccoon, opossum, bat, and many others) is usually killed (euthanized). This, despite the easy solution to rabies fears -- keep an eye on the animal to see whether or not it develops the disease. If you take an animal like that to the vet, or even to audobon, they will "confiscate" the animal and kill it. If you try to protest, they will take it anyway, and call the police on you. They are even instructed in their training that, if someone calls for information about a wild animal, they are to get your contact information first, so that if you refuse to give the animal up to them, they can send wildlife officials to your home to charge you with a crime and make you give it to them.

While I am on the subject of Dove Lewis, let me add that I once took an animal friend of mine there in an emergency, and was kept waiting in the waiting room for more than 4 hours in the middle of the night. When I was finally allowed to bring in my animal friend, i was to be seen by some airheaded vet tech who recommended test after test, never was able to tell me what was wrong with my friend, and used a lot of jargon that even she was baffled by. In the end, they kept me waiting for more than 4 hours, they charged me a FORTUNE, more than you can imagine, and never did help us. The next day, I took her to my regular vet, was charged $34 for an office visit, and given a real diagnosis and treatment. Stay the hell away from Dove Lewis. They may be the darlings of the corporate media when they want cutsy animal stories, but they SUCK. They charge too much, they are callous, and they are barely competent.

dove lewis 12.Jul.2006 22:10

former employee

It is a difficult situation. During my time at the hospital, the staff encouraged the person bringing wildlife in to keep it overnight if they could - I guess the policy has changed? Did you sign anything when you brought the animal in? I ask only because usually if a person signs a document related to emergency care and especially involving a native, wild animal, it could be some legal hoo-ha.

DL is beset by many problems, but also has a lot of dedicated people willing to go the extra mile for any animal. Part of the problem is that DL is a non-profit and run by a board of directors, rather than a "captain" who takes responsibility, takes names, and kicks some ass. There are many people on the board, and they all live in different parts of town and have their own careers to take care of. DL's admin is pretty large and takes up a good chunk of the budget. Without a clear leader, the mission and policies become vague and of course bad stuff like this happens. I have witnessed plenty of it. But I must also say that I have also witnessed some pretty heroic & compassionate stuff as well. Part of it depends on who is on shift at the time. The best remedy would be for the board to be abolished and replaced by a single, passionate, experienced, courageous and fair individual... I know this doesn't help the crow or other wildlife at this point.

I am sorry for the crow and I am sorry you had to experience this. Although his departure from this world was not ideal, at least this crow had you for a little while and did not die in the street or get eaten by some other animal. You did the right thing and you made every effort to assist. Maybe you know some people who would be interested in and dedicated to having a hardcore urban clinic fullly supported by their community? There must be some, even if they each only donated 7 hours per week, with rotating captains and open Friday-Sunday. And it doesn't have to be high tech - sorry for the cliche but remember all those stories from that certain rural, English vet? Eventually, enough people would be impressed enough to volunteer themselves here and there...why the f*** not?

so how much money goes to the board of directors? 13.Jul.2006 13:56

I know of similar

"causes" where they have a board of directors that seems relatively disconnected from the organization. I don't understand why organizations need boards anyway--it really seems to me over the years that the boards have people on them that hold things up, and I have never really liked boards of directors.
It's never as if a person walking into Dove Lewis with an injured crow would think, "Quick, I have an injured crow, I need to get to a board of directors as quickly as possible!!!"
That's shitty what Dove Lewis did!!! Really crappy and they seem positively evil. They seem more like a front operation for killing innocent animals and a gateway operation for breaking sick policies into society and a business where there are otherwise some of the best people.
And, I will never forget the pleas that Dove Lewis put out there on the radio not too long ago for lots of money that they needed to build their new facility---for such a good cause, "the animals need it," etc. When I first heard their campaign for money on the radio, I thought it was some sort of a scam because I am an animal rights activist, and I never heard of this Dove Lewis new facility cause.
Animals don't need buildings, they need love, and the rest will follow.

Don't condemn them 13.Jul.2006 16:25


I have had to take animals to Dove Lewis many times over the years. The staff was always attentive and caring. There have been some long waits, but each time they explained to me that animals with more immediate life-threatening problems were getting priority. Although they may not have handled the crow situation in the best way, I too would have hesitated to return an injured wild animal to someone who may have no knowledge as to how to care for him/her. If the crow was so badly injured that he would not be able to fly again, it wouldn't be right to subject him to a life of caged confinement. Before condemning Dove Lewis for their mistakes find out about all the animals/people they have helped.

Please Don't Miss Understand 13.Jul.2006 21:31

Very Upset Citizen

Please do not miss understand me. Facilities such as these often do good by those with companion pets. However, a facility such as this is NOT equipped, nor knowledgeable on wild life care, let alone birds. Please let me remind everyone that this center was supposed to keep stabilized injured wildlife overnight in safe keeping until the Audubon Society could evaluate the situation better. Wild Life animals are NOT getting this opportunity. Secondly, I would not have kept the bird, I made it very clear that my intentions were to take the bird to the Audubon myself in the morning. (A side note however....I do happen to know a bit about birds and I have successfully rehabilitated and released many in the past.)
I WILL condemn DoveLewis for its actions! Yes...they have and do help many companion pets, and I am sure that as many that have had bad experiences with them, there are just as many with good.
But that IS NOT THE ISSUE. The issue is, that there was an agreement created between the Audubon Society and the DoveLewis Center regarding how wildlife animals are treated. There is a clear miss communication between the two facilities. If the Audubon is going to direct people to this center, people, especially those who have had interactions with the Audubon in the past, might expect (such as I did) a similar attitude, and ethic towards the situation, as well as policy. There is a very CLEAR difference between how the two facilities are run. These ethic and policy differences need to be made public, so people can make a more informed decision in regards to the safety and well being of any found wildlife in need. I would also be so bold as to suggest that if the DoveLewis Center does not make its policies public and change its attitude towards wildlife care, that Audubon separate any and all current relationship to them.

Thank You 15.Jul.2006 09:54

Den Mark, Vancouver

I appreciate the o.p. sharing this important info about DL. I agree with what was said. Some professionals do not know where their expertise ends, & this seems to be the case with DL. I would've been angry, too, with DL's lies & threats. My concern for the animal would have outweighed restraint, & i would've seized the bird & left. I recommend filing complaint with the state veterinary board. I recently found a squirrel with apparent broken leg, & i expected & received concern & service for the little guy from our local animal shelter in Vancouver. I would not have tolerated anyone on a power-trip acting as self-appointed executioner. I was a ten-year volunteer with Oregon Humane some time ago. I left over such a power-trip incident. I happen to love huskies. One day i saw a handsome healthy husky on "death row", because he was a "runner". (ALL huskies are runners!) I asked for a few days for him while i worked to find him a home. One day later, i found a perfect home, in the country, near Camas, with two other huskies, but he had already been put down, because one person decided that she & she alone would rule on that dog's fate. She was the expert; i was merely a volunteer. That hideous attitude pervades too much of life. And we must confront it.

Looking up to local Audobon? 05.Aug.2006 10:31


In my experience, Audobon is only concerned with native species, not crows or other species that indicate overdevelopment. They are anathema and better off dead. That place evidences little concern for animals not part of its utopian agenda.

I agree to this.. 19.Aug.2006 06:10

Mayur Keshav

Yes,this is a serious issue at hand.I am responding to this because i myself have found an injured crow only today and and am trying my best to cure it.In india we have no proper facilities for birds.I am appalled that DL would do such a thing.I think that every person has a right to see to it that animals are properly taken care of.I feel that putting an animal to sleep is very disturbing as they too have the right to live..

Dove Lewis being non profit is a joke 03.Nov.2007 22:16

Doug rockndetermed@yahoo.com

Dove Lewis I am told claims to be a non-profit organization which yes by association they are. Something I heard was their doctors make top wage regardless of the client. If you bring a pet in you are paying for the expensive doctor. How they do this is the doctors dont technically work for Dove Lewis they are contracted. But the actual establishment is non-profit. Basicly they say this for a tax break, and once in a blue moon they fix a police dog, or a seeing eye dog for free. Next it ends up on the news, and they have a good name. My former pet that happen to spend his last breath in that crap town was put down by them for they wanted to charge me $3,000 for him being sick. My result of not having that much money was 1) Their finance package which had a 22% interest rate, or 2)put him to sleep. I dont see how any procedure for a dog being sick and being brought to a non-profit organization should cost that much. They just arent for the people or the animals. Just the money. If you are looking for quality service with a better price go somewhere else!


in know dove lewis well 29.Sep.2006 04:37

2 sides 2 everything

If an animal is suffering and they know that it will most likely be euthanized at Audobon, Dovelewis will often make the decision to euthanize wildlife that is brought in. Audobon will go the extra mile on serious injuries (like broken wings) on some of the more endangered birds (like alot of the birds of prey). However birds like crows or birds that are non-native are often euthanized OR used as food for the birds of prey they have at the facility.
I am not judging Dove lewis or Audobon but I am just saying that it is the way is. Neither facility makes its decisions in an uncaring matter.
As for the women who had the police called due to her behavior.... I laugh that she pictures herself as doing nothing out of the ordinary. Her behavior must have been somewhat aggressive for dove lewis to call the police. They see some pretty crazy people in the middle of the night and they don't call the police for the littlest thing. She must have done something outstanding to get the tough as nails overnight receptionist staff rattled.