Chris Swain’s competition agility dog Peppy bit someone on May 24. He was seized by the Mesquite Animal Shelter for a mandatory 10 day rabies quarantine, despite proof that he was fully vaccinated. From there, things began careening downhill:
“They told me I had to release the dog to them. I was instructed to put Peppy into this kennel,” Swain explained. “He still had his collar and all of his identification tags on him at that time. There was no documentation, and I was told I could not have any contact with him.”
No documentation was given to her or placed on the kennel as to his status or release date, she added.
What could possibly go wrong?
When the Swain family called to check on their beloved pet 3 days into the quarantine, they learned that Peppy had been mistaken for another dog and killed. Oops.
Ms. Swain and a number of local animal advocates addressed the city council this week to complain about Peppy’s killing and a generally suckass environment at the shelter:
Among other issues cited by speakers were a lack of professionalism, a laisse-faire attitude by some shelter employees, failure to properly care for baby kittens, lack of cleanliness and improper care of isolated pets.
All this at a place that tosses a loved pet into a cage with no cage card or paper trail then kills him because hey, little yappy dogs, so interchangeable. I mean, I’m assuming the dog he was mistaken for was another little yappy dog. For all I know the dog actually on the kill list was a lab or an Irish Setter or a… Siamese. But yeah, I can imagine how they do orphaned kittens.
The city is investigating itself in the matter of Peppy’s killing and in case you are in need of even more super reassurances, the city is on it:
“We made a mistake, and we apologized for that mistake,” said [City Spokesman Wayne] Larson. “And we are learning from that mistake.”
Just to clarify, “that mistake” was the needless killing of someone’s healthy, trained pet who was wearing ID tags that the shelter was supposedly holding in order to protect the public health. Since the dog was oops-killed before the quarantine expired, the bite victim probably had to choose whether to undergo treatment for rabies exposure or risk getting the disease. And the dog’s family is now saddled with a heartbreak that will last a lifetime. That’s what “that mistake” was.
“We are going to make some efforts to beef up our training and do what needs to be done to provide a quality service,” [City Manager Cliff Keheley] said.
Beef up our training. I guess I’ll just go with lol there. And doing what needs to be done is so ambiguous, it makes the “that mistake” guy seem slightly competent.
Keep raising hell, Mesquite animal advocates. These people are not going to change one damn thing or do one damn thing or care one damn bit. Get them out of the shelter and away from your animals.
(Thanks to everyone who sent me this story.)