Amber B Rbj
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Backyard Adventures of Louisiana abandons helpless cats
Near the Baton Rouge location of Backyard Adventures, there used to be a colony of feral cats. These cats were unsocialized and unadoptable, but a group of caring individuals managed the colony, feeding them and getting any newcomers neutered and "ear-tipped". The businesses in the area welcomed the feral cats, as they served as a highly effective form of rodent control. But recently, business owners and colony caretakers noticed that cats were disappearing at an alarming rate. Yet Animal Control had no records of cats from this area being turned in. Obviously, something very bad was happening here. Then one of the colony caretakers noticed a cat trap on Backyard Adventures's property. When CAAWS consulted Animal Control, Animal Control confirmed that the trap was not theirs. They had never lent a trap to the people at Backyard Adventures, nor had they taken in any cats from them. At this point it became clear what was going on. A volunteer confronted the owner of Backyard Adventures, Chuck Saia, informing him that they knew he was responsible for the cats' disappearance. At that time, Saia openly admitted that he had been trapping the cats and then dumping them elsewhere. The volunteer informed the business owner that while he would be perfectly within his rights to trap nuisance animals and send them to Animal Control, what he was doing was animal cruelty and illegal. Saia replied that he didn't care if what he was doing was illegal, as long as the cats were gone. From there, things got worse. After learning that many compassionate people cared about the wellbeing of the colony, Chuck Saia began to take a sadistic pleasure from taunting and thwarting the efforts of these caring individuals. On one occasion, when a caretaker arrived to feed the cats, Saia actually physically blocked the caretaker's car in with his own and then proceeded to threaten her and set up a trap right in front of her. Fearing that he would soon begin poisoning the cats, volunteers began working to humanely and responsibly relocate the remaining cats. As volunteers caught the few remaining cats, the story took a sad and disturbing new turn. All of the remaining cats that were trapped by volunteers turned out to be positive for feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), which means that those previously trapped and dumped by Saia were most likely FIV positive as well. In a strange and unfamiliar area, the cats that Saia dumped would surely find themselves fighting with other cats, possibly including people's own pets. In doing so, they will transmit FIV to a new population of cats. In their distressed state, desperate for food and water, and fighting with local cats, the immune-compromised cats that Saia dumped will surely suffer an excruciating death. But as long as they aren't anywhere near his business, Chuck Saia doesn't care. Sadly, Chuck Saia will almost certainly never face justice. While all parties involved concur that his acts were very cruel, the consensus seems to be that actually getting Saia convicted on animal cruelty charges would be nearly impossible. As yet, the business owner has not divulged where he dumped the cats that he trapped, even though volunteers are desperate to intervene, both to save the dumped cats from horrible deaths as well as to prevent them from spreading FIV. Other local businesses that cared for the cats are likewise deeply upset by what has happened. Chuck Saia is just one "dealer" of Backyard Adventures products. Volunteers also contacted Backyard Adventures, Inc., which describes itself as "A family company…with family in mind", through their "Contact Us" link on their website, hoping that someone higher up might be concerned by the actions of their Baton Rouge dealer. To date, there has been no response. In summary, when you do business with Backyard Adventures of Louisiana, you hand your money over to a man who has no qualms about sentencing defenseless cats to horrible deaths and then rubbing it in the faces of decent, caring people. If you have a shred of compassion in your heart for these innocent creatures, you will take your business elsewhere.
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