Gilles Meloche & the Metro Animal Services Mess

It’s the nightmare that just won’t end for the River City. Our fleur-de-lis is forever tarnished by Jerry Abramson’s Metro Animal Services hot mess: Gilles Meloche. We could go on for days about what a flustercuck the whole thing is, but, uh, let’s just take a trip down memory lane.

We hear through the grapevine that some folks went to the Kentucky Board of Veterinary Examiners in Frankfort to file charges against Dr. Meloche. If that’s the case, maybe the Board will finally see fit to consider allegations brought by the Louisville Kennell Club from months ago? The group alleged that Meloche lied on this application for his veterinary license. They also said that had they known the complete and awful truth about the malpractice case involving Meloche in Canada – and his guilty plea to 27 counts of selling anabolic steroids without a license – he wouldn’t have “DVM” after his name in Kentucky today.

We’ve tracked down legal documents from the Canadian case. Some clients sued him for malpractice: they alleged that they’d brought their dog in after it was hit by a vehicle. They insisted he do a chest x-ray but he claimed it was unnecessary and said the dog would be fine. But what? It died. They sued and won. Meloche appealed the case and, well, was still found to be at fault.

Makes sense, doesn’t it? Appointing a Québecois found guilty of such a thing to head Metro Animal Services. Tons of sense.

Anyway, take a look at one of the original documents in French:


Here’s the translated court document related to Meloche’s appeal:


It’s sick. Jerry Abramson and crew knew about this. They had additional background information on the guy, as well. And he was still appointed.

In 2006, LEO’s Stephen George wrote a story about Meloche that today seems, well, just flipping creepy and prophetic.

Meloche dismissed the lawsuit, which he lost, weirdly comparing it to a DUI/traffic ticket witch hunt:

In person, Meloche comes off as charming, with a deep French accent. In the interview, he said the steroid issue arose because of a clerical mistake by an employee, and that he was not acting maliciously. “It’s a parking ticket,” Meloche said. “It’s a big difference between a parking ticket and being convicted of DUI. Do you agree with that? That’s exactly what (LKC is) trying to do.”

But the creepy part? Check these excerpts out:

Meanwhile, the shelter became overcrowded, nearly doubling capacity at one point. The former board member said animals were dying regularly in their cages, the facility was rank with urine and feces, and staff became demoralized.


She and two co-workers wrote an anonymous letter to Tallahassee officials in October 2002, citing four instances where animals were improperly treated under Meloche’s care. One case mentioned in the letter dealt with a husky-mix puppy with a bad leg, which Meloche decided to treat himself. He took the animal home that night, but it died of aspirin toxicity. It received too many painkillers.


“His thing was to get our euthanasia numbers down, and of course everyone wants to do that, but his method was to let the animals suffer and die,” said Connolly, who now teaches in Florida public schools. Meloche didn’t respond directly to Connolly’s charges, but reiterated that his method is not to allow animal suffering but to try and halt animal killing, even by humane euthanasia. “In Tallahassee,” he said, “I did a fantastic job.”


In July 2005, a Humane Society of the United States audit of the Tallahassee facility revealed that overcrowding had led to inhumane living conditions for the animals. Part of the audit was conducted while Meloche was still working in Tallahassee, and it attributed the overcrowding to Meloche’s euthanasia policy.


What remains to be seen is whether Louisville MAS will follow the pattern that Meloche’s background seems to establish. Overcrowding is being talked about openly as a problem here. In an Aug. 21 Metro Council committee meeting, Councilman Kelly Downard referred to a surprise visit he made to MAS where there were some 400 dogs on hand. The capacity is 300. One explanation is that the Humane Society last year increased its fee to accept animals, which caused the intake at MAS to rise some 35 percent within a couple months. Another is that Meloche refuses to euthanize animals, instead letting them sit in cages for 40 days or more in some cases.

It’s like everything has come to fruition.  Sickening.

Maybe now the mainstream media – and the folks in Frankfort – will start paying attention.