'Jon & Kate Plus 8' star Jon Gosselin returns dogs Shoka and Nala to their breeder, blames Kate
It was just a few months ago that Jon Gosselin, embattled star of the reality series "Jon & Kate Plus 8," had to defend himself against accusations that the Gosselin family's two German shepherd dogs, Shoka and Nala, were abused.
The trouble started when Gosselin, apparently intending to compliment the dogs on their easygoing attitude with the eight children he shares with now-estranged wife Kate, told People magazine that the children "beat them up, climb on them, pull their tails, bite at them, drag them around and everything you can imagine not to do to an animal, they've done."
In short order, animal lovers from around the country began bombarding Gosselin's local humane society with complaints. Gosselin later issued a statement that said in part, "We understand the responsibilities of being good dog owners. Whenever my kids are with Shoka and Nala, everyone is carefully supervised to ensure that no one -- dog or child -- is injured. Shoka and Nala are loyal companions who we consider members of our family."
But now even that last part -- the sentence that refers to the dogs as "members of our family" -- is in doubt. Gossip website RadarOnline is reporting that Gosselin has given Shoka and Nala back to their breeder, apparently indefinitely.
"I've got them for an undetermined amount of time. There was no discussion of a time when Jon is going to pick them up," the breeder told RadarOnline. "Nothing is final."
Gosselin confirmed to E! Online that he's returned the dogs (most reputable breeders will take back or re-home a dog they've bred if the buyer is unable to keep it), adding that he holds Kate personally responsible. Apparently the two split time at their Pennsylvania home but avoid being there at the same time, and Jon alleges that Kate refuses to care for the dogs when it's her turn to stay at the house. "It's not fair to the dogs to not be wanted in their own home," he added (although E! is quick to point out his failure to explain why he doesn't simply take the dogs with him when he leaves).
A 1998 study conducted by the National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy to determine the most common reasons people relinquish their pets found moves and landlord issues to be the most prevalent reasons for giving up a dog or cat, but "Owner having personal problems" was right up there as the fifth most common response.
-- Lindsay Barnett
Photo: Jon Gosselin with one of the German shepherds. Credit: TLC