Animal Rights

Veterinarian's License Suspended Over Facebook Post (Photo)

| by Jonathan Constante
Kristen Lindsey's controversial Facebook photoKristen Lindsey's controversial Facebook photo

A Texas veterinarian's license has been suspended for a year after she killed a feral cat with a bow and arrow and posted a photo of herself holding the dead animal online.

Kristen Lindsey posted the controversial photo on Facebook back in April 2015, KVUE reported. The post read: "My first bow kill. The only good feral tomcat is one with a bow through its head! Vet of the year award...gladly accepted."

The photo quickly went viral and sparked outrage among animal advocates all across the country. Lindsey was terminated from her job, but an Aston County Grand Jury did not find her guilty of animal cruelty.

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Lindsey’s lawyer, Brian Bishop, told the board at the time that the cat was feral and that disposing of feral animals was common in her area, My Statesman, sister publication to the Austin American‑Statesman, reported. Bishop added that his client did not act with “criminal recklessness.”

A year later, Lindsey had her court hearing over whether or not she would keep her veterinarian’s license. Animal advocates from all across the country were in attendance.

Members of the board heard testimony from several parties involved. One of the testimonies came from a family that claimed the cat was theirs and that the feline was neutered.  

Lindsey’s co-worker, Karen Chapman, told the board she overheard a conversation between Lindsey, her boss and her landlord. She claims the landlord told Lindsey to “take care of the cat.”

"What I understood him to mean was for Kristen to shoot the cat," Chapman told the board. "People do that all the time in Washington County."

The State Office of Administrative Hearings recommended a one-year suspension of Lindsey’s license in August. They also recommended an additional four years of probation, continued education, and 100 hours of community service.

The Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners amended the recommendations, but dropped the community service requirement. They added six hours of animal welfare training and 17 hours of continued education.

Sources: KVUE, My Statesman / Photo credit: KVUE

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