Shelter Pet of the Day: Kentucky

Added, 10-30-13: Readers Clarice and db have offered to donate to whoever helps Bo.


Bo, as pictured on the Petfinder website.  He is at the Franklin Co Humane Society in Frankfort KY
Bo, as pictured on the Petfinder website. He is at the Franklin Co Humane Society in Frankfort KY.

Today I received a note from a reader, asking me to feature a dog at the Franklin Co Humane Society in Kentucky on the blog as he is going to be killed on Friday and the reader really wanted to help find him an adopter or rescuer.  I needed to verify the information about the dog being scheduled for killing on Friday so I wrote to the contact e-mail address provided.

From: Shirley Thistlethwaite
Date: Tue, Oct 29, 2013 at 11:47 AM
Subject: Jeanine

I am planning to feature this dog on my blog today, per a request from a reader.  Are you affiliated with the facility that is housing this dog?  I am trying to confirm information I was given – that he is on the kill list for Friday.  I only want to include accurate info in my post.

Thank you,

Shirley Thistlethwaite


From: Jeanine <>
Date: Tue, Oct 29, 2013 at 11:53 AM
Subject: Re: Jeanine
To: Shirley Thistlethwaite

I am the shelter’s Rescue Coordinator and yes he is on the list however my shelter manager will not allow our animals to be posted online with a euth notice because of the negative feedback the shelter receives.  The staff does not have time for harassing calls and emails.  Please stress the he has been in and out of our shelter for over a year and time is of the essence but do not use the word euthanasia or give a date.  Give my email address as the contact and I’ll expedite any interest in him.  Thanks.


From:Shirley Thistlethwaite
Date: Tue, Oct 29, 2013 at 11:58 AM
Subject: Re: Jeanine
To: Jeanine <>

Thank you for the information Jeanine.  If he’s on the kill list for Friday, I’ll be saying so.  I don’t play fancy dress up with people who kill pets.  Facts are facts.  I get them and I tell them.  I will be happy to include your e-mail address as a contact.


From: Jeanine <>
Date: Tue, Oct 29, 2013 at 12:01 PM
Subject: Re: Jeanine
To: Shirley Thistlethwaite

We are a county open admission shelter taking in thousands of animals a year and people don’t understand the lack of resources and shelter space so thanks but no thanks. Do not post our shelter dog.


Shorter:  We’d rather put a dog in the dumpster than have someone tell the truth about the killing we do here at Franklin Co.

In order to get to know the Franklin Co Humane Society a little better, I visited the group’s website.  FCHS has a report posted there indicating its live release rate for January through August 2013 was 75%. The most recent board meeting minutes posted on the site are from July 2013. A few snippets:

This year the shelter alone (without the thrift store) essentially broke even. We have income exceeding expenses by $69,076 for the 12 months ending in June. […] Assets went up from $340,000 to $470,000. Sam noted this was a good turnaround we should be happy about.


August 24 – Microchip and license sales at Petco from 11 ‐ 2. Lauren will attend with a volunteer to help with this endeavor. Normal cost is $25 but will only charge $20 (cost is $10 so there will be a profit).


Upon recommendation by the Evaluation Committee, a motion to approve a 3% raise for [shelter manager] Nancy Benton retroactive to July 1, 2013 was made by Ray Smith, seconded by John Hibbard. Motion approved by all except Linda Thomas opposed. Motion carried.

Shorter:  Income exceeding expenses, selling microchips at a 100% markup, give the manager a raise.

But I guess I don’t understand about “the lack of resources” at this profitable facility where the staff is going to kill Bo instead of doing their jobs.

If you are interested in helping Bo, please read his particulars then contact the Franklin Co HS.  Oh and I wouldn’t mention that you saw him here.  Not that anyone who works in a shelter would kill an animal out of spite but you know, negative feedback and resources and stuff.  Let us know if you need help.

Franklin County Humane Society
1041 Kentucky Ave
Frankfort, KY 40601

43 thoughts on “Shelter Pet of the Day: Kentucky

  1. And this DEFINITELY falls under the “if you can’t own it, don’t do it” rule.

    If they are planning on killing this dog on Friday, and someone comes to them offering a means to potentially take this dog off the list, why not JUMP on that? You want to promote this dog before we kill him? Yes, please!! Here’s more info on the dog that might help potential adopters decide if this is the dog for them…

    One less dog for you to kill. Or…was it a secret that you’re killing dogs? Did nobody know you’re killing dogs? Well, the secret is already out, so why not just try to kill one less dog on Friday, okay?

  2. Several years ago, I wanted to adopt a dog in a Kentucky pound. I had someone to help me drive and we could be there in a day and a half. The shelter manager told me they wanted someone local to adopt the dog and not someone from out of state. I kept calling and by the end of the week the dog was dead. It was a holiday weekend and they cleared out the pound. I cringe whenever I read or hear Kentucky and animals in the same sentence. I will donate for transport, vetting or whatever this dog needs, in memory of the one I could not save.

    1. I can understand that their first choice would be a local adopter, but in my head adopting to someone non-local should come before killing. I guess I just don’t understand resources or something?

  3. I feel like there was something very negative that I have heard about this place over the years but no can’t put my finger on it.

    1. Maybe it was that they kill animals? Because apparently they try to keep that fact as quiet as possible so you might have only heard it whispered in an alley somewhere.

      1. Lol, well that too. No I had them mixed up with floyd county. I have heard some stories of a sanctuary there having major issues with floyd.

  4. Also, I can’t help but think that if this dog keeps getting adopted out and coming back, it’s because their adoption counselors (if they even have them) are doing a terrible job of matching up dogs and adopters. He keeps coming back because of cats? Are they serious?

  5. Our local pound, the APS of Durham (NC), told a rescue group I worked with that we were not allowed to promote adoption of their dogs on out page if we used the word “kill” in the post.

    In 2012, that pound killed more than 55% of the dogs and 72% of the cats who came in. I have talked to many locals who were turned down as adopters there.

    Oh, but nobody WANTS to kill animals, of course …

  6. Shaking my head – again – hope that someone gets this guy out before Friday. WTH have they been doing with him all these times he’s been back to try and improve his doggy manners? The write-up isn’t all that positive, either. Oh well, they’ll probably kill him on Friday, as planned, and then they won’t have to worry about him being returned.

    Damn them all to h3ll. And I hope this guy finds a wonderful home with people who actually, you know, work with him and give him some consistency in his life.

    Keep us posted!

    1. “WTH have they been doing with him all these times he’s been back to try and improve his doggy manners? The write-up isn’t all that positive, either.”

      This is what I’m wondering about. They’re making it sound like there’s something wrong with this dog and that’s why he keeps coming back, but everything they list is pretty much normal behavior for a friendly energetic young dog! What the hell are they doing?

    1. Thanks for advocating for this boy. Doesn’t like cats – well then he goes to a home without cats. This is not rocket science, just common sense. I so hope that he makes it out alive.

  7. The bio needs some work – it sounds like a list of pro and cons. Re-word it. For example: “Bo has lots of high fun energy so a home with really little kids may not
    be recommended due to his exuberant joy”!!
    Make him a Staff Favorite. Have his favorite staff person or volunteer write the bio about all the things they love about BO. Do a movie. Get him in a foster home. If no foster home, place him in the Office to give him a break. Make a Facebook Page for him and promote him that way too. Get a different photo out of the caged kennel as the featured photo.
    Gosh, a dog at UPAWS named Dukie (pit mix with a handicapped leg and other animal aggression) was in the office for months. Dukie waited a whole year but he found a safe, caring great home for him finally. .

    Ugh — I feel sick : ( I don’t like what the shelter person said — like they are hiding something : ( Makes me sad for Bo and all the rest on that list.

    1. You are bang on here! I wish that you could convince my local humane society to do some decent marketing. They just list the facts – age, gender, s/n status – and it’s much worse for the cats than the dogs. Most of the staff are “dog people” so they do a bit more with them. My 2 fosters (6 and 9 year old cats who tend to be shy) got moved to a cage at Petsmart, where they spend all the time sleeping – no interaction with shoppers or potential adopters. At the shelter at least you could pet them and pick them up and play with them. Why not put cute, fluffy kittens and young cats who “show” better at the store? I’ve “suggested” so much that I’m on their “not favorites” list now. Just want to help get the animals adopted, but they see it as questioning their rules and policies.

      Sorry, but the marketing is so very important and Bo and the others at this facility (and lots of others) are getting a bad deal. How do we convince people to do what’s best for the animals? Guess that would mean that they’d have to care, first of all, and be willing to listen and . . . make changes.

      1. If I ran a shelter, my policy would be “Anyone with ideas on how we can adopt out more pets, faster PLEASE MOVE TO THE FRONT OF THE LINE.” The fact that so many shelter directors consider people who share lifesaving ideas to be pests speaks volumes.

      2. 100% agree that marketing is very important! But is sounds like it is something that some shelters think they can put on the back burner. I feel it is one of the most important components to getting them homes. We are constantly coming up with ideas with our staff. Some ideas are better than others — but at least we all try! June Bug is a an example. She is obese (on a eating plan) and has to have her bum cleaned every day by our staff til she can reach it herself. We love her! Check out Junie B at this link. It’s just another idea for marketing her. She is a Facebook cover photo : )

      3. It’s what happens when people box themselves in to a narrow view: “We’re doing the best we can! Nobody WANTS to kill animals!” etc. Once they are insulated in that tiny box, they surround themselves with defenders (enablers) and fight off all challengers – even when those challengers are people trying to help save lives.

        On Wed, Oct 30, 2013 at 11:09 AM, YesBiscuit!

    2. That picture makes Bo look like a happy, friendly dog. The bio is terrible–but the Shelter Pet Project did a lovely one for him, that doesn’t even break the shelter’s “rules” by mentioning his kill date.

      And, sorry, while lots of dogs do great with cats, not all do, and there’s this simple procedere called “cat testing.” Had they been doing their jobs, he would never have gone to a house with cats in the first place.

    1. Just because the pet killers do not feel a sense of urgency when it comes to lifesaving doesn’t mean they can control how others feel or what they say.

  8. Here is a bio that I wrote for a dog at UPAWS. We really don’t mind if other shelters take from this to get ideas on writing bios. Spark Plug is a bit of a handful, jumps on people, basically has had not much training. Ok fine. But it’s the way you word the bio that matters. We wouldn’t write that he is a crazy, jumping dog! Plus our dogs get at a minimum of 3 walks a day, time in the play yard, rawhides, Kong’s etc. to keep them mentally and physically happy while they wait to be adopted.

    Spark Plug is an active, goofy 1 year old male neutered Yellow Lab. This big boy will be up and ready for most any type of adventure! From playing in the yard to chasing a Frisbee…Spark Plug is ready to Go, Go, Go!! Smart and eager to learn, he will work hard to please his people pals. Positive reinforcement training is what he longs for as he just needs some direction. He would love to have some fun, interactive training and learn some tricks and commands…especially for a Scooby Snack! He is a very fast learner, knowing sit very quickly and is working on his leash walk manners.
    Looking for a cross country skiing partner, someone to toss the ball with or how about a pal to hang out and play with? How about a dog that you can help be the best he can be with your positive guidance. Well Spark Plug would love to fill that position! Bring your family and dog to have an introduction in our play yard. Spark Plug would love that! He’s a good boy.

      1. Thank you so much Shirley. We love him! Especially our Manger loves him. She stops and makes sure she personally takes him and a couple others for an extra good walk each day : ) He is a good dog just needs positive guidance.

        Here is a scary Pitbull bio that I did…oh very scary Pit!! Eekk!! Maybe other shelters can get some tips from this scary bio : )

      2. I see instead of devaluing the dog by stating he was “dumped at the shelter by a heartless owner”, you have instilled value in him by explaining that he was well loved by his former owner and part of a family. Rad.

      3. Yeah, we get a lot of that locally, too – dumped by owner, betrayed by owner, thrown out like trash…all unhelpful, imo.

        Any movement on this dog? I fear for his safety.

    1. That is so great! My local hs allowed me to do a write-up with photo that they reluctantly put in the room where my fosters were – but then immediately moved them to petsmart. These are cats who are very different at home than in a shelter environment. How do I help them now? What can we do to convince people that marketing is critical and that there are good ways and bad ways (and locations) to present these animals to potential adopters?

      You are a true jewel – whitetabby4 – every shelter/facility/rescue needs you!

      1. db – Thank you so much. I appreciate you kind words. UPAWS thinks carefully on what cats they place at Petsmart. What is interesting though is that some cats that have maybe taken awhile to find homes, once placed at Petsmart, get adopted. Not always but more than not. In fact just today I was at UPAWS and asked who was going to Petsmart. The manager said one cat and I said, oh that one is Staff member favorite. A kitty that is very near and dear to one staff member because she took this terrified cat under her wing and spent a lot of time socializing him – well, he turned into a social (bossy!!) butterfly! The Manager had already asked the staff if they were comfortable with this kitty going! They were, but what I love is that everything and one is taken under thought. Again marketing the right cats where. Maybe share this and possibly they (your shelter) may consider each cats placement differently?

      2. Thanks so much for the reassurance and hope. My two do not show well because they are so shy, so putting them in a position where they cannot be directly interacted with puts them at a disadvantage, in my opinion. I wrote to the one person at the hs who is still speaking to me to see how long they will stay there (over 2 weeks now and several kittens and younger cats have been adopted from Petsmart). It gives me hope that there are people who are seriously considering what’s best for the animals.
        I also suggested that my local hs take a look at how you introduce (via bios) your animals to the public and potential adopters. To me, you guys are the gold standard of animal rescue/shelter/etc.
        If Shirley will put us in touch, I’d be interested in knowing how you go about reuniting lost/found pets with their owners, too or do you not do that? There is a group locally who has started a Facebook page to try and do that but much resistance from local animal control (some reasons I think are legitimate, others not so much).

      3. db – thank you so much. It took awhile to write the bios — at first (many years ago) I was angry writing them at the people who brought the pets in…it sure showed in my bios too. Then I had a realization when UPAWS went to saving instead of killing (no kill). I had to just concentrate on writing the best bio I could write for the pets sake…no one else and no hidden agenda. Our Manager writes the bios too. This PDF I found years ago is very helpful in writing pet bios:

      4. db – as far as Lost/Found pets – UPAWS does a number of things and works closely with a local Facebook group “Lost and Found Paws of the U.P” (link below). UPAWS has a Lost and Found link on our website, we advertise the pets daily in our local newspaper, on radio, TV our Facebook page and the Lost and Found paws page as well as many others. It is amazing but we get a lot of pets claimed and we NEVER shame the owner anywhere for their pet being lost!! That is wrong as anyone can loose a pet. I could easily loose my cat is I wasn’t watching carefully. My goodness we get the community involved by helping organize with the Lost paws network, search parties even! It can be done.

  9. *Shakes head at bio and situation* Seen this happen way too many times now.

    He is adorable though. I hope he finds a good home soon.

    1. I haven’t heard anything but he is still listed on Petfinder as available. Assuming the facility keeps its PF listings updated, that means at least he’s still alive. I hope.

      1. Christie Keith reports that she has found,a rescue for Bo, and now he needs a ride from Dry Ridge, KY, to the Cincinnati area.

      2. Please keep us posted if you can. I hope he survived to see the sunrise this morning. I’m never comfortable until they are out of the building.

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