From ANIMAL PEOPLE, Jan/Feb 1997:

“Let’s put this in perspective,” said football
coach Tom Smythe of McNary High School in
Salem, Oregon, to Portland Oregonian correspondent
Cheryl Martinis on November 25, after 18-
year-old linebacker Thomas Shepard was arrested
and charged with felony animal abuse for allegedly
clubbing a stray cat to death. “He didn’t rape,
maim, or pillage anyone. He committed a foolish
act that cost a dumb animal its life. So let’s not drag
this out forever.” Charged with Shepherd was Darle
Dudley, also 18. In October 1995, seven McNary
students including four football players were charged
with aggravated animal abuse for beating an opossum,
then burning her alive. They videotaped the
killing and showed the video in a classroom while
the teacher was out.

Tiffany Niederle, 18, a Westerville
North High School senior in Columbus, Ohio,
founded All Pets Rescue, a nonprofit adoption
placement service, after a volunteer stint with
Citizens for Humane Action, a nearby shelter. In
1994 she began doing poodle rescue; branched into
other small dogs; began rescuing and placing cats as
well; and now does “everything from dogs and cats
to rats and turtles,” she recently told Nancy J.
Smeltzer of the Columbus Dispatch. Incorporated
nonprofit, Niederle placed 15 dogs and 20 cats in
1995, collecting an adoption fee of $30 per cat, $40
per dog, which she said just about covered expenses,
on average, and had placed 30 dogs and 45 cats by
Thanksgiving in 1996. “It’s her business,” said her
mother, Shelli Niederle. “The animals are her
responsibility. I pet and talk to them, but I’m not
cleaning the cages.”
Needing scratching posts and cat toys
for some 60 to 90 feline guests at any one time,
Ursula Goetz, executive director of the Monmouth
County SPCA in West Long Branch, New Jersey,
asked the local Board of Education for help, and the
students of the “Technology in Our World” practical
problem-solving class at Shore Regional High
School came through, designing and building a variety
of original cat-bafflers from donated pieces of
carpet, cardboard tubing, and lumber. A year ago,
Shore Regional students came through in another
pinch, raising $950 on short notice to help keep the
shelter open through a cash flow crisis caused by
civic budget constraints.

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