On December 5, Memphis pet advocate Jody Fisher wrote to Memphis Animal Services to ask why they had so few pets posted on PetHarbor when the $7.2 million facility has 555 cages and whether this reflected a surge in live released animals. This is the relevant portion of the response she received:
On Dec 5, 2013, at 10:21 AM, DeKeishia.Tunstall@memphistn.gov wrote:
We have had some exemplary numbers in terms of positive outcomes recently.
While this MAS staffer was typing this response about “exemplary numbers”, records obtained via FOIA request show that seventeen animals were being killed in the MAS snuff room:
To the best of my knowledge, only one of these seventeen animals was ever housed in the area where the public is allowed at the pound. She was an owner surrender, apparently thin and obviously scared:
The other sixteen animals were kept behind locked doors at MAS, never to see the light of day again. They were never walked or evaluated by a behaviorist. No one except MAS staff knew they were there. Many were killed for “space” while hundreds of cages sat empty at the pound. MAS defenders refuse to stand up for the animals by publicly decrying this practice of housing animals in a private dungeon then killing them.
Exemplary is not the word that comes to mind.