Continuing Problems Plague Anderson Co Shelter

Tom Allen is a member of the Anderson Co Council and the animal welfare committee which deals with issues involving the Anderson Co Animal Shelter.  At a public meeting on Friday, Mr. Allen voiced one of the frustrations in addressing these issues:

“Half of Anderson County is in love with the animals, and the other half is fighting pit bulls and chickens,” Allen said Friday. “No matter which side you take, you are going to get beat over the head.”

That is quite the dilemma.  On the one hand, you don’t want to side with the half who love animals (What have they ever done to help the local shelter anyway?) because that would anger the other other half.  And of course you can’t just side with the criminals who are abusing animals because of that whole law thing.  If only there was some clear way to distinguish the right thing to do here.  Hmm.  Puzzler.

Regarding the controversy surrounding the shelter allowing Fred Acker to take pets to CT to sell for $325 each, Mr. Allen spoke in favor of Mr. Acker:

Allen presented a binder that had a rap sheet for Acker about 2 inches thick, but then he said most of the charges against Acker had been dismissed and that one held up for a dog that was not up-to-date on vaccinations.

It’s good to know if my rap sheet ever gets thick enough to be measured in inches, I can count on the support of Mr. Allen, provided “most” of the charges have been dismissed.

“He’s probably not the smoothest person in the world,” Allen said. “He sounds pretty crusty, but he is not cruel.”

I so want this guy in my corner.

Also at the meeting, the subject of internal tracking of shelter pets came up.  Some called for improvements but others pointed out that they are doing so much better than they have in recent years:

Five years ago, when the shelter had a different director, Anderson County lost more animals at the shelter than it kept up with. In the fiscal year that ended in June 2005, 7,745 animals out of 13, 236 that went to the shelter ended up missing or unaccounted for. That is 58.5 percent, according to an ongoing review by county-hired number cruncher and investigator Bob Daniel.

The shelter “lost” nearly eight thousand animals taxpayers were paying them to take care of in fiscal year 2005?  This is the place people came to look for their lost pets?  This is where good sams brought pets they found so they could be reunited with their owners?  Oh my god.

Regarding the ongoing problem with rodents at the shelter, we get this gem (Fasten your Logic Seatbelts and brace for impact):

Shelter veterinarian Kyle Powell said Friday that one of the biggest problems at the shelter “is John Q. Public going from dog to dog to dog touching them all without washing his hands.”

Kyle Powell said something as simple as unwashed hands breeds the shelter’s problems with flies and mice.

I hate to point this out but you are a public animal shelter.  John Q. Public pays for you to exist. The reason John Q. Public comes in and touches dogs (oh, the horror!) is because he is looking for a pet – which is the thing you are supposed to be encouraging.  If I was a resident of Anderson Co and I read this, I’d get the feeling the shelter vet doesn’t want me coming there – that I’m a problem and a nuisance to them.  Is this how they want the people of the community to feel?

Secondly – and let me state up front that I did not go to vet school – how do people touching dogs without washing their hands cause the shelter to have pest control problems?  Seriously, HOW?  Please educate us mere John Q. Publics.

Not to sound uppity but I’ve managed to keep track of 100% of the pets in my care – every year – and that’s even with my low-brow, dog touching ways.  Why can’t Anderson Co get it together?

Leave a comment

7 Comments

  1. Well, YesBiscuit, you may keep track of your pets, but do you wash your hands between them to prevent mice from breeding? I’m sure Dr. Powell and the shelter staff do so…

    And you omitted one of the animal behavior problems that they discussed: “Smith also discussed possibility of putting cameras near money cabinets and drug cabinets at the shelter.”

    Of course this is the Animal Welfare Committee, which is separate from the Advisory Committee (which graded the shelter as a “D”), neither of which tells us who is really in charge or responsible, if any. With the local newspaper simply reporting on statements this absurd and just calling it passion, there doesn’t appear to be any help from that direction.

    Reply
  2. debbie bullard

     /  August 23, 2010

    Seems to me, they need to be watched a bit tighter as well.
    Why doesn’t the Aspca do their investigating as well and 2005, what has happened there in the last 5 years?

    Reply
  3. Someone should tell that vet that the doctrine of spontaneous generation was disproved ages ago. He really ought to catch up on those continuing education credits.

    Reply
    • Dearest Valerie, you do need to take this vet in context. I believe the Doctrine of Spontaneous Idiocy states that one dumb remark will be followed by a completely absurd response that has no bearing or relationship to the first one, and this continues until Darwinian Selection intrudes when they use these opinions to maintain their own lives.

      While the Doctrine you mentioned was disproved, this other one is quite alive and well…just look around…

      Reply
  4. Maybe it’s a new species of rodent that grows from bacteria that live exclusively on cute floppy dog ears?

    If so, this shelter may be able to raise some funds by selling some to researchers. Scientists love new species.

    Reply
  5. selkie

     /  August 23, 2010

    wow, just wow.

    they LOST all those animals and are feeling JUSTIFIED.

    I’m fascinated by what appears to be a novel (is it a patanted American way) of spreading rodents and bacteria -must be those hot southern states thing- maybe our colder winters kill it up in Canada?

    GRanted, my daughter used to use her brother’s tee shirts to rub and pet our ancient old dog when she got really really old and stinky – that way the Lass continued to get all the love and pets she loved AND Maeve got to keep her hands from smelling (and Declan, being a teenage male was oblivious of the odourous “old dog” smell that permeated his person).

    I wonder if she would be arrested there for biological warfare?

    Reply
  6. Anne

     /  August 24, 2010

    how in the hell… i mean, i can get kennel cough transmission from unwashed hands, but rodents? i’m not even sure i can get behind flea transmission that way

    and wtf about all the lost animals?! My shelter accepts maybe 6000 animals a year- i can count on one hand how many we’ll lose- and by lose i mean stolen

    Reply

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