Nicky Bandy wanted to adopt a Chihuahua at the Coffee Co pound in TN. The pound has indoor/outdoor concrete runs and Ms. Bandy was concerned about the temperature of the concrete floor – the only surface on which the dog could stand or lay. She says she offered a blanket for the dog’s run but the director refused to accept it. She was so concerned the dog would freeze to death on the concrete, she returned to the pound daily to check on the pet. Last Friday, Ms. Bandy was told the dog had died.
Local animal lovers complained to the mayor and he reportedly visited the shelter personally on Monday to determine the temperature of the inside portion of the run in which the dog died.
“At 7:30 this morning I rolled in here, we shot another temperature – the same pen that the little animal was in. It was 62.6 degrees. It was 28 degrees outside,” said county Mayor David Pennington.
I am guessing the mayor checked the temperature of the air while standing in the kennel. This would not be the same temperature as the concrete on which the short-coated toy breed dog was sleeping. This should be obvious to someone smart enough to run a county.
Chihuahuas are not farm dogs, sled dogs nor any of the other types of dog who are equipped to survive winter temperatures without protection. They require human intervention if they are to survive such conditions and any shelter director should know that. But the director at the Coffee Co pound offered this keen insight:
“I don’t know who made the statement the dog was froze to death, but it was not,” said Coffee County Animal Control Director Kevin Brown. “I really don’t know why it died other than old age.”
Well it’s not impossible, although it seems highly unlikely to me. The answer could be determined via necropsy, if anyone on the county payroll wanted the truth:
The county says it has no plans to get a necropsy to determine why the dog died.
I guess that answers the question of whether anyone pocketing their paychecks courtesy of county taxpayers wants the truth.
When a pet owner in Coffee Co is accused of allowing a dog to freeze to death, does the mayor whip out his thermometer and decide that no investigation or charges are appropriate based upon the reading? If not, there appears to be a double standard between what the county requires of citizens and what it requires of itself.
It will be up to local advocates to push the county for reform and demand the pound be held to a higher standard than the mayor’s dog and pony show with the thermometer.
(Thanks to everyone who sent me this story.)