Bodey was a 2 year old Lab belonging to Christopher and Desislava Mertens of Horry Co, SC. He had been raised from puppyhood and was a beloved family member. When the Mertens were overseas on vacation recently, they found out Bodey had gotten lost. They made every effort to find him:
“We did Facebook, Craigslist, every page we could think of as far as spreading the word,” said Christopher Mertens.
They enlisted the help of friends and local shops, putting up posters and online posts every day.
The Mertens also called the Horry Co Animal Care Center but were told there were no records indicating Bodey was there. Having heard that a neighbor may have called AC regarding Bodey, the owners pressed on, eventually tracking down the ACO who had impounded him. That ACO finally told the couple that Bodey had been adopted. They asked if they could leave their information for the new owners so they might be able to see Bodey and know he was safe. The pound refused. The family continued to worry and ultimately contacted the local news for help. A WCET reporter obtained records from the county showing Bodey had been impounded, held for 7 days, and killed.
The Horry Co pound initially told the family that Bodey wasn’t there and never had been. That was a lie. Then they said Bodey had been adopted. That was another lie. Only when the reporter got involved and demanded the public records was the truth known. I wonder if the county would have ever told the truth about killing Bodey.
The couple was devastated:
“If you pick up a dog and you give that dog five days to live, but you don’t post a picture of him, or put up anything notifying anyone of that, you’re not giving that animal a chance, period,” said Mertens.
The county, despite having been exposed as liars, admits no wrongdoing in the attempted cover up:
The sad reality, the county says, is thousands of animals are brought to the Animal Care Center every year. The decision to put an animal down is based on the animal’s health, the potential to be adopted, and the amount of space in the shelter.
Whatever lets you sleep at night, Horry Co. It’s monsters like you that keep me awake.
(Thanks Clarice for the link.)