On Christmas Day 2013, an ACO impounded a dog named Hollie for a rabies quarantine at the Pima Animal Care Center in AZ after she reportedly chased a child on a bike and bit his leg. Owner Tammy Porter was given a form to sign indicating she would redeem Hollie as soon as the quarantine expired. The Porters were prepared to meet with shelter staff for education on how to keep Hollie reliably contained and prevent another incident.
When Ms. Porter arrived at the shelter to take Hollie home, she learned the impounding officer had failed to properly communicate to the staff that the owner intended to redeem Hollie. So they killed her. Oops.
“It devastated us.” Hollie was part of our family for six years.”
The news really hurt Tammy’s 12-year-old daughter Rachel Porter.
“I was really close to her,” said Rachel.
Manager Kim Janes comes across as lackadaisical in his response to the killing of an owned pet:
“We always review our procedures when these kinds of things happen,” he said. “And we just doubled up on some of the double checks we can do to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
Ho hum. Just another day at the office.
In its 2012-2013 annual report, the Pima Animal Care Center claims its live release rate was 64% (without providing the detailed numbers behind this figure). Shelters that do their jobs have live release rates in the 95% range. Pima is falling short. “These kinds of things” don’t happen in a vacuum. They happen as a result of a culture of killing – where controlling the shelter population by violence is an accepted standard and owned pets sometimes inadvertently wind up in the vast swath of death deemed acceptable and normal.
(Thanks Clarice for the link.)