There are levels of appalling. This story is all top tier appalling. It’s the appallingest.
On Monday, January 18, Teresa Panameno let her cat outside. Little Boy never came home. He was trapped by a neighbor and Wake Co ACOs picked him up the next day. Like many pets who get trapped by cat hating neighbors and taken to places that kill roughly half the cats they are supposed to be sheltering, Little Boy was not in a ball of yarn playing mood. Instead of recognizing his behavior as normal under the circumstances, the Wake Co pound rushed to deem him unowned and unadoptable:
Dr. Jennifer Federico, Director of Wake County Animal Services told ABC11 that the cat was immediately deemed feral for his aggressive nature, and given the state-mandated stray hold of 72 hours.
Meanwhile Ms. Panameno continued searching for Little Boy, including looking at the animals listed on the Wake Co pound’s website. She finally saw his picture posted on the site on Thursday, January 21 and began calling the shelter. No one was answering the phone so she sent an email. But no one was answering emails either. The office staff had gone home in preparation for a storm that was moving through the area. The front office stayed closed on Friday due to inclement weather but Wake Co kept the kill room up and running for business as usual. Little Boy was killed on Friday, while his owner was trying to get him back.
Someone from the pound finally answered Ms. Panameno’s email on Sunday, advising that her pet could not be handled at the time he was impounded, failing to mention that he had been killed while the place was closed to the public. So the next day, Ms. Panameno drove to the pound, cat carrier in hand, to bring Little Boy home. Gee, I bet that was a swell conversation to have.
But the director is all NO REGRETS:
Federico maintains the shelter followed procedure[.]
“It’s just sad all around,” Federico said.
Noooo. When you wait by the mailbox for weeks for your Little Orphan Annie secret decoder ring and then it finally arrives and you figure out the special message Little Orphan Annie had for you was a crummy commercial, that’s just sad all around. When you accept an owned pet from a cat hating neighbor, immediately label him unowned, then close for business due to weather but keep your kill room open, then fail to admit to the owner what you’ve done so that she walks into your facility full of hope, expecting to take her beloved family member home, that’s unconditionally appalling. Your precious procedure sucks. If you can’t own it, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it.
(Thanks Clarice for the link.)