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Please help save Phineas!

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Please help release this dog that has been unjustly imprisoned for 16 months in Salem, MO.

• Phineas’ story has been covered by Inside Edition, Fox 2 News, Fox Syndicates, St Louis Post-Dispatch, The San Francisco Chronicle, KSPR Springfield, KOLR 10, Ozark News, FM News Talk 97.1, Associated Press, AOL Headline News, The Riverfront Times and various high profile online news portals.

Save Phineas

• Phineas is a sweet, friendly yellow Labrador Retriever dog, unjustly labeled vicious and given a death sentence by the City of Salem, Missouri. He allegedly bit a neighbor girl. The issue to date seems a 16 month saga of injustice, small town politics, personal vendettas and rumor with many collateral issues. Attempting to summarize with just the most basic of facts is difficult. Phineas is in his second year of city custody.

• During his first nine months of incarceration, Phineas was kept safely at DCAWS, a local no kill animal shelter. He was then quarantined by city officials in undisclosed locations. One of those locations had him caged in the dark and windowless basement of the old town firehouse with only a wooden shipping pallet to sleep on. Another location was the pump house under the town water tower. A third undiscovered location resulted in a public outcry which brought Fox Media and the Missouri Department of Agriculture to town, forcing the City to turn Phineas over to qualified veterinary care professionals. Cruel and unusual acts toward Phineas and his family, but those same seemingly sadistic actions made animal lovers around the world take notice. When these claims were proven valid, the support group grew from a few thousand to forty-thousand overnight and has since grown to 170,000.

• Despite the fact that Phineas was deemed not vicious by a behavioral expert and that the girl’s mother recanted her story about two previous bites, the judge seemed to ignore all testimony and sided with Salem, Missouri Mayor Gary Brown’s hearing report.

• While authorized by Missouri statutes to do so, the mayor refuses to initiate action to vacate the euthanasia sentence. Supporters hoped that having this story in the media as much as possible, having petitions signed and substantiating the facts would change the city officials’ minds. So far these actions have been returned with unprofessional ridicule and mockery from the city officials.


• The images used as evidence were presented to the media by Mayor Brown during interviews. Those images were also shared with the public. At a glance, many were dumbfounded. The alleged bite appeared to many as something other than a dog bite, impossible to have been made by Phineas. Public outcry grew. Confronted by Phineas supporters, city officials said “prove it.” Supporters set out to do just that. Experts in Odontology, Canine Behavior and Canine Bites produced analysis using industry standard methods. The independent studies are of mutual conclusion that Phineas should be excluded as the source of the alleged bruise/bite marks on the child. City officials and local print media once again ridiculed and mocked the efforts of the support group.  

• A hearing for a 2nd Request For Relief Of Judgment filed by Phineas’ legal counsel has been granted. In a community this size, an impartial hearing seems impossible. The case will be heard by the same judge that passed sentence. However, legal counsel feels it is a positive sign that the judge has agreed to hold the hearing. Meanwhile, the appellate court has stayed its proceedings until after this hearing.

Resources: for media concern. Will be forwarded to legal counsel and support team if you are planning to be in Salem, Mo 17 Oct 2013 for the hearing please let us know

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