Dog ID #245894 was impounded as a stray by Memphis Animal Services on the night of September 5. Her review date is listed in her records, obtained via FOIA request, as September 11. However on September 7, there is a note that a person was interested in adopting her. A second potential adopter was recorded on September 8 with the note “will be here at 11:00 to adopt”. But dog #245894 was not eligible for adoption on either of these days since she was being held as a stray. I don’t know how this mix up occurred because local rescuers have told me on numerous occasions that MAS is very strict about not allowing any access to stray pets before the hold period has expired. I don’t know if either adopter actually attempted to adopt this dog or what happened if they did. In any case, she had not been adopted on her review date so Jody Fisher requested a hold be placed on the dog while she networked her. She was given just 48 hours.
The medical history for this dog is also troubling. The dog received no exam or vaccines upon impound and in fact did not receive any vet care until her review date, September 11, when she was given a heartworm test. On September 13 – eight days after impound – the dog was weighed, dewormed, given a topical flea treatment, and vaccines. The following day, a “mild dry cough” was noted. The day after that, September 15, she was moved to isolation for treatment of a “moist productive cough” and the vet noted: “Tracy Dunlap to contact rescue.” The next note is on September 18 from Tracy Dunlap: “OK to decide disposition. No rescue stepped forward for this dog.”
There are no notes documenting that any rescue groups were contacted between September 15 and September 18 or any other time regarding this dog. As far as I know, no pleas to rescue groups registered with MAS were ever issued for this dog. If they were, and again – no evidence exists of any rescue pleas to the best of my knowledge, they would have had to say something like, “You have 2 days to get this coughing dog, who is in heat, out before we kill her.” This would be a challenging plea for any group to respond to, had any plea ever been made.
A supervisor put the dog on the kill list immediately after the “OK to decide disposition” note because of “space needed”. Space was not needed. MAS had plenty of space for this dog, just like they always do. But they killed her the next day anyway.
There are so many failures here, it’s painful to count. If the dog would have received vaccinations upon impound, maybe she never would have gotten a cough. There was obvious interest from the public in this dog and she would have been easy to adopt if no owner reclaimed her. If rescue groups had been contacted and the dog had been aggressively marketed from day one, she would have almost certainly gotten out alive.
Dog #245894 was needlessly killed when other options to save her were ignored. How many more, Memphis?