For those that have been following the long and twisted saga of the Texas veterinarian Kristen Lindsey – who famously shot a cat with a bow and arrow and then bragged about it on Facebook and has been fighting to keep her vet license ever since, here’s the latest – the outcome of Lindsey’s SOAH disciplinary hearing. The judges issued a 60 page Proposal for Decision (PFD) that included the following points:
• The judges concluded that the cat Lindsey killed was in fact Tiger, a pet cat – not a feral cat.
• Lindsey acted recklessly by killing Tiger without his owners’ effective consent.
• Shooting feral cats with a bow and arrow is not a “generally accepted and otherwise lawful” method of wildlife management. The judges added, “Ultimately, the appropriate manner of killing a feral cat is beside the point, because the cat killed was Tiger, an owned cat.”
• The judges also stated that: “Respondent acted under the guise of the practice of veterinary medicine because hcr caption for the Facebook post linked the conduct to the veterinary profession, making the act a violation of the Board’s Rules of Professional Conduct.”
• Despite some testimony to the contrary, the judges concluded that Tiger was killed instantly, and did not suffer.
• The judges believe Lindsey’s conduct did not cause a hazard or risk to public health, safety, or economic welfare, and did not result in economic harm to property or the environment, and that she has been deterred from similar reckless actions in the future.
Lindsey was found guilty of a Class B violation. (Class C is the least serious and Class A is the most serious.) The PFD recommends a 5 year license suspension and 100 hours of community service. From the PFD: Click here to read the entire document.
The Board should issue a five-year suspension of Respondent’s license, with four years fully probated, and the entire period subject to quarterly reporting requirements; require Respondent to complete continuing education hours in the areas of veterinary jurisprudence and animal welfare (and/or such other subjects as the Board sees t); and impose a community service requirement of at least 100 hours of volunteering time at a feline rescue, free spay/neuter clinic, or similar facility.
Note: THE PFD IS A RECOMMENDATION ONLY, AND DOES NOT SIGNAL THE END OF THE CASE. Each party now has 15 days to file Exceptions to the SOAH Proposal for Decision. Upon review, the judges may choose to modify the PFD before final submission to the vet board.