Helen Turner’s microchipped shelter dog Shayla escaped her Maryland yard one day last month. Baltimore Co Animal services picked her up close to home. Instead of knocking on doors in the neighborhood to see if anyone recognized the dog, the impounding officer apparently just took Shayla to the pound. Missed opportunity number one.
The Turner family searched the neighborhood for their lost pet, circulated her photo online and contacted area shelters. Ms. Turner left several messages at the Baltimore Co pound but those messages were all ignored. Missed opportunity number two.
A member of the public alerted Ms. Turner to a photo of a dog at the pound who looked like Shayla. Ms. Turner went to the facility, showed the staff a photo of Shayla and asked if she was there. The staff advised Ms. Turner that Shayla was not at the pound. Missed opportunity number three.
Ms. Turner decided to walk through the kennels herself to find her dog. She found Shayla, noted her kennel number and her kill date: four days after impound. After doing so, she returned to the front desk and told the staff she wanted to reclaim her pet. The staff regarded her with suspicion:
“I said, ‘Shayla’s here. No. 16.’ And they said, ‘Are you sure? It doesn’t look like her.’ I said, ‘I’m positive that’s our dog. Did you scan her? Because she’s chipped.’ And they were like, ‘Well, I just got here. I don’t know if she’s been scanned,'” Turner said.
Missed opportunity number four. Plus bonus points for side-eyeing the person trying to save the dog from the kill room and sidestepping the chip issue. No thanks to the staff at the pound, Shayla is now home with her family, enjoying life.
Good going, Baltimore Co. Remind me again how we all want the same thing and it’s the irresponsible public’s fault that shelters kill animals.
(Thanks Clarice for the link.)