The national watchdog organization, Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! (SAEN), filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture urging the department to issue a maximum fine of $60,000 against Portland Community College after the deaths of six animals on its property.
The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service called Portland Community College’s Rock Creek Campus farm facilities “critical” in a routine inspection last month.
The farm houses multiple animals for the school’s vet tech program, according to PCC’s website.
The USDA’s report states that since October 2018, four lambs were killed by predators, thought to be coyotes, at the farm. SAEN’s complaint also outlines a set of twin calves that died earlier in 2018. The USDA’s report states the calves were born small and weak and that the farm manager initiated care to the animals immediately, including tube feeding them. He notified the “Attending Veterinarian” the next day. The calves later developed swollen joints and died despite antibiotic treatments.
SAEN argues more prompt medical care should have been given to the animals.
“It is obscene that Portland Community College’s negligence has now killed six infant animals in just over a year,” SAEN co-founder Michael Budkie said in a news release. “This fatal negligence must be punished.”
In a statement from PCC, the school said it regularly receives inspections from the USDA and is working with the agency’s wildlife services to prevent further animal loss.
“In all cases of animal predation deaths, PCC has reported these incidents diligently and promptly to its USDA inspector and responded quickly to adopt increasingly stringent anti-predator measures,” the statement said. “Each death was followed up by a review of the farm facility’s program according to best practice documents pertaining to wild predator loss prevention.”