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Family speaks out after Humane Society adoption ordeal

A George Town mother is finally speaking out about an ordeal she says devastated her family. She told Cayman 27 her family was poised to adopt a shelter dog named Pinkie from the Cayman Islands Humane Society back in October, but the deal fell through and the dog was instead shipped overseas for adoption.

With two daughters and two energetic dogs in the household, there’s always something happening at the Whitney’s George Town home.

Even so, Michelle Whitney told Cayman 27 her family decided it had room in its heart for one more when it saw an online appeal from the Humane Society for a forever family for Pinky.

“The minute we saw the posts of her, we just fell in love with her face and she was just adorable,” said Ms. Whitney.

She told Cayman 27 Pinkie joined her family as a foster on October 4th, 2018: not long after, the family made the decision to adopt.

“I called the lady that we had been dealing with, and told her hey, listen, we’ve thought about it and yes we would like to go ahead and adopt, to which she then said, wonderful,” said Ms. Whitney.

But before the paperwork could be completed, the process hit a snag.

“The woman that I was dealing with, became very passionate about the fact that we had an un-neutered male in the house, and that automatically made us unable to be foster parents or adopt the dog,” said Ms. Whitney.

She told Cayman 27 the family was willing to come into compliance, but by then, she said communication broke down.

“Not one single person from the Humane Society that we contacted would return our phone calls or emails or WhatsApps,” said Ms. Whitney.

The Humane Society did not wish to comment for this story, but said in an email to the Whitney’s that it has a firm policy to not allow adoptions to those who have other unaltered dogs in the home.

About a week after Pinkie had joined her family, the Whitney family returned the animal to the Humane Society. By the end of October, Pinkie had been shipped overseas for adoption.

Ms. Whitney says her eldest daughter Kaydee, who is diagnosed with autism and had already forged a strong bond with Pinkie, took it hardest.

“It was really difficult as a mom to see that an animal that only took 24 hours to melt her heart, had been taken away, it is not easy to replace that,” she said, choking back tears.

Several weeks later and the pain is still fresh. Kaydee didn’t want to talk on camera, but her younger sister Kaila did have something to say.

“I would have just wished that they would’ve let us have Pinky and we could’ve gotten her, because she was a good dog. I miss her,” said Kaila.

Ms. Whitney told Cayman 27 she wishes the matter could have been handled differently.

“All it needed was communication, to let us know, all you need to do his neuter your male and you can have the dog, we weren’t even given the courtesy of communication, they just cut us off,” said Ms. Whitney.

We contacted the Humane Society for its side of the story but they declined to comment.

In a late October email to the family, the Humane Society said it stands by its policy, and that the organization only had the best interests of the dog at heart.

Although it’s of little comfort to the Whitney’s, Pinky did get a happy ending. The Humane Society said Pinky has already been adopted into a loving home in the US.

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to

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