Three Strikes for Amarillo Animal Control

Amarillo Animal Control in TX has come up on my radar three times.  The first time was in 2009 when a local “humane society” decided that killing was the best thing to offer Pitbulls in their care.  Shannon Barlow of Amarillo AC was all like yeah, you go Pitbull Death Girl.  In 2012, an owner went to Amarillo AC to redeem her lost dog and found him covered in blood.  The pound’s executive director somehow sold the media on the notion that the dog’s injuries were self-inflicted.

On Friday, an owner named Ashley Hicks redeemed her lost Pitbull who had been picked up by Amarillo AC that day.  Ms. Hicks found her pet, Raider, unresponsive and struggling to breathe.  She took him to two different vets trying to save his life but ended up having to euthanize him to end his suffering:

The cause of death was Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation, also known as DIC. DIC is a serious disorder of blood clotting that could be caused by trauma.

Hicks states that it wasn’t until Raider was in the care of Animal Control that he was wounded. She believes it was because her dog was a pit bull that it was profiled and then harmed.

Ms. Hicks seems to be under the impression that Shannon “Hurray for Killing Pitbulls” Barlow is biased against Pitbulls and that the pound staff mistreats them.  Assistant director Barlow is all nuh-uh:

Animal Control Assistant Director, Shannon Barlow states that her staff is not responsible. It had been four hours from the time they received phone calls about the dog to the time he was caught. “The dog had been out running and we don’t know what happened to the dog,” said Barlow. “Anything could have happened while he was out.”

Commenters on the article state that witnesses saw Raider being walked to the AC truck but that he was unable to move when the owner came to reclaim him due to a broken neck.

If AC picked Raider up in the condition he was in when Ms. Hicks arrived at the pound, their records should reflect this.  And AC should have taken him for immediate vet care.  Further, there needs to be some explanation from the pound as to why an additional ACO was needed in order to get the allegedly aggressive Raider onto the truck.  How much fight could a dog with a broken neck possibly have in him?

If it’s true that Raider walked under his own power to the AC vehicle and later became unresponsive and had a broken neck, the records should reflect what happened.  Either way, there appears to be a need for an investigation by a disinterested party.

(Thanks Clarice for the link.)

17 thoughts on “Three Strikes for Amarillo Animal Control

  1. “Animal Control Assistant Director, Shannon Barlow states that her staff is not responsible.”

    That pretty much says it all.

  2. This is extremely biased. Lemme clear some things up. (PS I don’t work for this facility but I used to work for a rescue shelter) 1. Animal Control and The Humane Society are in the same building but different entities. 2. A few years ago you weren’t even allowed to adopt pit bulls until new rules were put in place recently, so how is that a move by the director towards anti-pitt bull regime? 3. Amarillo Animal Control is an award winning facility and a lot better maintained than most city pounds. 4. (and most importantly) Amarillo Animal Control brings in 50-100 animals each day, so how might I ask are they going to afford to give veterinary care for each animal (most of which won’t be picked up by the owner)?! If you’re willing to quadruple your city taxes then pay up! 5. Until you’ve worked with injured animals don’t even talk about how much trouble it is to restrain something. Even with my training I’d handle a rattlesnake over an injured dog any day. 6. “Self-inflicted” also includes the possibility of another dog (or even person or vehicle) injuring him before he was even brought in. Do your research before going all activist on a facility that cares more than you do. If people properly confined their pets and spay/neutered them they wouldn’t be there in the first place.

    1. If Amarillo AC cares more about shelter pets than I do, that’s super. And they are outpacing me in dogs with broken necks and dogs covered in blood too.

    2. Actually, many of us HAVE worked with injured animals. Some of us with injured wild animals, too.

      I think it’s also safe to say that none of us have CAUSED injuries to animals. And also that we got immediate care for animals that needed it.

      I do have to wonder if Amarillo brings in an injured animal, what prevents them from noting that the animal is injured on the intake forms? Because they seem to have multiple injured animals with zero notation about the injuries.

      And why does a dog who was seen walking into an AAC truck lay on the floor unable to move once in their “care”?

      “If people properly confined their pets and spay/neutered them they wouldn’t be there in the first place.”

      Nice. Blame the public. Because that ALWAYS works well.

      AAC is supposed to SERVICE the public by providing a safe haven for animals that are loose, lost, injured, etc. That’s their job. It’s like saying, “People wouldn’t end up in the hospital if they were more careful and took better care of themselves! Then they wouldn’t get sick or injured!” How people end up in the hospital is irrelevant. Once they’re there, it’s the job of the staff to care for them and not abuse them.

      Same for AAC. You earn a paycheck for doing a job. If you can’t do it properly, you shouldn’t be paid for it.

  3. Until you’ve worked with injured animals don’t even talk about how much trouble it is to restrain something.
    excuse me, but animals are NOT THINGS – so your attitude
    toward them is coming through loud and clear to me; course it’s
    a whole lot better to blame the public; a pretty building does not
    make for a compassionate shelter, by the way

    1. You’re just twisting my words, I studied wildlife biology, I’m a birder, a former rescue shelter worker, a former wildlife center tour guide, and dispense medications for pets at my current job so I fail to see how my “attitude” toward them is unsympathetic. “Something” is just my ambiguous term for “multiple species”. You’re failing to see my point.

      1. I also know of a medical student who beat and killed a number of greyhound puppies and a vet school staff member who was convicted of abuse and neglect of several dogs and cats in her home. Your point?

      2. Sorry David, but killing and abuse apologists just don’t seem to be openly welcomed here.

  4. Please consider that the AC department is a piece if your local city government. This is not a self governed deprtment.. What this means to those of you who hold one person responsible is that there are policies and procedures in place by your local elected officials. If you don’t agree with how the department is run… Perhaps one idea would to be to get your local government, vote and allow others to do their job,.which would be much less chaotic if your animals were properly contained.

  5. To David Parker – 1) I would really like to know what ‘award’ Amarillo animal control has won. 2) I would like to know what city pounds you have worked with that are LESS well maintained than Amarillo 3) What do you know about what money is spent or available In Amarillo to know that veterinary care is NOT affordable for the shelter animals?

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