DeGeneres: Doggie dilemma 'out of hand'


Ellen DeGeneres says she's done talking about her canine dilemma and is pleading for calm, saying on her show that the controversy surrounding an adopted dog has "gotten out of hand."

During a Wednesday taping of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," to be aired Thursday, DeGeneres told viewers she wouldn't speak again until the dog, Iggy, is returned to DeGeneres' hairdresser and the woman's young daughters.

The dispute erupted last month when DeGeneres and her partner adopted Iggy, a black Brussels Griffon mix terrier. When Iggy wasn't able to get along with DeGeneres' cats, the couple gave the dog to DeGeneres' hairdresser.

Mutts and Moms, the nonprofit dog-rescue organization that originally gave DeGeneres the dog, later took it back, saying the talk show host had violated the adoption agreement by not informing them that she was giving the dog away. That set off a firestorm of nasty e-mails and threats directed at the agency after DeGeneres shared the blow by blow with viewers on her show this week.

"Let me just say this, it's gotten out of hand," DeGeneres said on the segment to air Thursday. "I want nothing, nothing more than that dog returned to that family. But you don't resort to violence. So anybody out there, please stop that. Please don't threaten or do whatever."

The angry calls got so bad that Marina Batkis, co-owner of the dog rescue organization, said she had to close her business and stay home Wednesday, a day after DeGeneres broadcast a tearful, televised plea for the dog to be returned to her hairdresser and the woman's daughters.

"My life is being threatened. This is horrible," a tearful Batkis said outside her home.

DeGeneres has acknowledged she erred but said her hairdresser and her family shouldn't be punished. Batkis has refused to back down.

"If Ellen wants to place dogs and decide what's a good home, then she should start her own rescue group," she told "Inside Edition." "But I'm the one doing this and I know what I'm doing."

DeGeneres said several agencies had offered to provide the family another dog, even one that looked like Iggy.

"And unfortunately, Ruby, the little girl, doesn't want another dog, she wants Iggy," said DeGeneres on the show to air Thursday. "It's not a toy that's broken that you can replace. It's a dog."