Local Couple Interrogated By Nazi-like Pet Rescue Service
By Scott Salad
Published October 25th, 2015
SARATOGA SPRINGS — The slogan on the Pleasant Valley Pet Rescue website seemed inviting enough: “Give a nice animal a nice home.”
But when veterinarians Keith and Michelle Ween contacted the group to express interest in adopting a Boxer Terrier named Max, they had no idea they were in for a Gestapo-esque investigation in to their personal lives, complete with a late-night home invasion.
“At first, we were like, 'Wow, this is a little intense',” said Keith Ween, referring to the 37-page adoption form and attached credit-check authorization waiver. “But we really liked Max, so we closed our practice for a couple days to fill out the paperwork and gather some additional documents.”
These included photocopies of the couple’s driver’s licenses, three months worth of pay stubs, recent blood tests, dental records, 401k statements and Internet browsing histories; along with several forms detailing the couple's political leanings, religious inclinations, sexual histories and habits, charitable donations, environmental views and combined monthly gas mileage.
But it didn't end there.
One night, while the Ween's were asleep, five people dressed in German SS military uniforms barged into their home demanding more information.
“They wanted a full list of known associates, including friends, family members and clients,” said Keith Ween. “They questioned us for almost eight hours. It was very scary.”
After the harrowing experience, it took the couple three weeks to gather enough courage to contact the service regarding the status of the adoption, and what they learned was both unexpected and heartbreaking.
“Because they were unable to find suitors that lived up to their standards, we were told that Max had to be put down,” said a distraught Michelle Ween. “It made no sense. We're veterinarians!”
Pleasant Valley did not return calls from The Smudge, but released the following statement on their website:
“Wir stehen fest hinter unseren strengen Ansatz zur Annahme. Wir wollen nur das Beste für die Tiere unter unserer Obhut, auch wenn das bedeutet, dass Sie euthanizing um zu verhindern, dass sie in die Haushalte unterdurchschnittlich Ausführen von Personen mit verdächtigen Hintergründe, bloodlines und moralischen Codes.”
“We stand firmly behind our rigorous approach to adoption. We only want what's best for the animals under our care, even if that means terminating their lives in order to avoid placing them in sub-par households run by individuals with suspect backgrounds, bloodlines and moral codes.” As for the Weens, their experience has forced them to reconsider starting a family.
“Compared to adopting a rescue animal,” said Michelle Ween, “child-rearing just seems a lot less demanding.”