Update July 7, 2017 3:37 PM:
Lena Dunham's long-time boyfriend Jack Antonoff just weighed in on Lambygate. He posted three tweets in a row, saying that Lena loved Lamby but he bit her twice and her father once, and despite the fact that it was a hard decision, she opted to rehome the dog.
His tweets don't address the contract that Dunham signed promising to return Lamby to the Brooklyn animal rescue should she need to give him up.
On Thursday, the Brooklyn animal shelter from which Lena Dunham adopted her beloved rescue dog, Lamby, disputed Dunham's claims that the dog "suffered terrible abuse" prior to being placed with her. Longtime Brooklyn Animal Resource Coalition (BARC) employee Robert Vazquez told Yahoo, "We checked the records for Lamby. He was ‘owner surrendered, not enough time,’ so we do not know where she got ‘multiple owners that abused the dog.’"
Dunham responded to the resulting backlash on Thursday night with an Instagram post featuring a painting of Lamby. In the caption, she wrote "Staff at the shelter where I adopted Lamby have a very different account of his early life and behavioral issues than I do." She wondered, "Why should this story be subject to scrutiny and anger?"
Over the years, Lamby frequently appeared on both Dunham and her boyfriend Jack Antonoff's Instagrams, and he even had his own Instagram and Twitter accounts. But in the past few months, Lamby hadn't appeared in many of Dunham's own Instagrams. In a June 21 Instagram post she explained why, claiming that after "four years of challenging behavior and aggression that could not be treated with training or medication or consistent loving dog ownership," she could no longer keep him, for the her own safety and that of Antonoff, their neighbors, and Lamby himself.
A source told People that Dunham had the dog checked out by at least six veterinarians who diagnosed Lamby with brain damage.
But in an email to Yahoo, Vasquez wrote that he was actually there when Dunham adopted Lamby, “because I’ve been in-charge of the dogs for the last 14-15 years at BARC." He explained, "If Lamby had a bad past or was abused, do you think BARC would have adopted him to Lena knowing she’s a new star and put her — or the dog — in that situation? We would have told her if the dog had issues. We are a no-kill shelter. We don’t lie about the dogs’ histories because that gets them returned — and mentally it’s not good for dogs.”
In a 2013 New Yorker piece Dunham wrote about life with Lamby called "Canine Cravings," Dunham admitted that her hectic work schedule probably wasn't ideal for a dog, but she adopted one anyway. While her intentions were obviously good, she clearly didn't know, at that point anyway, enough about caring for a dog with any sort of unpredictable temperament.
In December, Dunham either bought or adopted two poodle puppies, who she named Susan and Karen. She brought them onto The Tonight Show with her in February, dressed up in little outfits. They seem like sweet dogs who will probably work out fine (although, who knows), but it also seems likely that Lamby may have gotten aggressive with the new pups and that's when she made the "heartbreaking" decision to rehome him.
In any case, Vasquez pointed out that Dunham had signed a (fairly standard) contract saying that if, at any time ever, things didn't work out with Lamby, she would return the dog to the no-kill shelter, where they'd be able to evaluate him and hopefully place him in a more suitable home.
Instead, Dunham sent Lamby to behavior rehab, at a place called Zen Dog in Los Angeles. After spending time there, Lamby was taken home by one of their former dog trainers, who claims he's doing quite well in his new environment. So that's good, at least, right?