Manatee Co Shelter Employee Alleges Dog Ripped Pants

Kayla Lippert, a potential adopter, her 2 year old son and a volunteer were having a meet and greet with a dog called Happy Feet in the fenced play yard at Manatee Co Animal Services in FL on Monday when things went sour.  A shelter employee, who had left the play yard to obtain information for Ms. Lippert, returned and apparently spooked the dog:

“As soon as the dog saw (the employee), his whole demeanor changed. He went into defense mode,” Lippert said. “The dog went to his feet, and the gentleman kicked him. He picked up a chair and waved it at the dog while me and my son were watching.”

The employee says Happy Feet bit his pants, tearing the fabric at the knee, and the kicking and chair waving was done in self-defense. Ms. Lippert says she saw no biting or ripped pants:

“I never saw the dog bite him,” Lippert said. “I saw the dog near his feet, but I never saw a bite. The volunteer was standing on bench asking: ‘Why are you kicking him? Stop kicking him!’ He kept saying, ‘He’s attacking me, he’s attacking me.’”

Manatee Co Animal Services will investigate itself in the matter. Regardless of the results of that investigation, circumstances are decidedly sadder for Happy Feet today.  He’s sitting in the thug quarantine section of the shelter with a sign on his cage indicating he bit a person and is not allowed to have walks.  He’ll be held there for 10 days and evaluated.  The shelter director says Happy Feet may not be put back on the adoption floor but does not elaborate on what would happen to the dog in that case.

This photo was taken by Ms. Lippert in the play yard before the alleged pants incident:

Happy Feet, as depicted on the Herald-Tribune website.
Happy Feet, as depicted on the Herald-Tribune website.

Hopefully this isn’t the last time Happy Feet ever sees the sun.

(Thanks Clarice for the link.)

28 thoughts on “Manatee Co Shelter Employee Alleges Dog Ripped Pants

  1. There is something very very wrong here! A dog that indicates that kind of fear when seeing someone tells me that person has hurt that animal in the past and the dog expects that will be done again. On top of that it seems that person lies about what happened even when observed by others not to be the case.That shelter needs to fire that person and listen to the visitor.
    The poor dog should not loose his life because of an abusive lying employee.


    1. I agree there appears to be much wrong with this story. If I had to pick just one thing, it would be quarantining a dog for 10 days for allegedly biting pants. Pants can not contract rabies, which is the supposed reason dogs get quarantined after bite reports. To me, it is indicative of serious ignorance or perhaps malevolence or I don’t know what – but it’s not good. I can’t think of any reasonable explanation for the action. The dog’s behavior is obviously going to deteriorate while being locked in a cage for 10 days with no walks. Then boom – they hit him with an evaluation.


  2. Sounds like the employee has a history of being “rough” with dogs, particularly on the way to the kill room (according to the story comments). And the leadership is weak (reminds me of Matt Pepper et al). I fear this dog will not live long beyond his ten days for possibly ripping the pants of someone who was kicking him…


    1. I am afraid you’re right – and the employee will continue to mistreat animals, who will pay with their lives. Just so very sad – and this place has not much good going on in the first place. I hope for a miracle for this pup.


  3. I agree with Arlene. There appears to be much wrong with this story. A dog that indicates that kind of fear when seeing someone tells me that person has hurt that animal in the past and the dog expects that will be done again. On top of that it seems that person lies about what happened even when observed by others not to be the case.That shelter needs to fire that person and listen to the visitor. Happy Feet was playing with the woman and her child till she saw he the returning person. This poor dog should not loose his life because of an abusive lying employee


  4. After doing some further reading, this place sounds like it could rival MAS for the awfulness to the animals, threats to rescues, good old boys protecting each other, all the horrors that end up with dead animals. And it sounds the Happy Feet’s potential adopter still wants him and has found an attorney. The other awful thing is that the “alleged” abuser is able to “take care” of this dog while he is in quarantine.


  5. There is something wrong here. It’s Manatee County. Look up Buck and Bill. This county was hell bent on killing them, and did so.


  6. Poor Happy Feet needs to be moved out of there. Or better yet George needs to be kept out and any volunteers willing to walk the dog should be allowed to. After all there were NO problems in the 90 days prior to the abusive incident. And only with George who has a problem with animals. It has been documented but Koper and others ignored the depositions and complaints. Once again “Shame on Manatee County”


  7. There is a meeting at the central library in Bradenton on Wed July 9 @ 5:30 I believe – to help this dog. Please show up & show support!


  8. I didn’t mean to sound like I was attacking anyone before. Piper was half asleep when I wrote that and didn’t realize how the tone could be taken.

    I followed what happend to Buck and Bill from the time it started. So I saw all of the stunts AC and the county government pulled to get those dogs killed. And how they were treated while under their “care”.

    I wasn’t there to see what happened, but going by what I have seen from them before I believe the outsiders who saw what happened, and not anyone who works there.

    That place is full of “good ol’ boys”. At this point, any words saying they are going to change are just lip service. They remember the press they got before, and trying to make this go away before it gets too “public”.


  9. George V. needs to be one of the ones to go to the heart stick chamber, not Happy Feet. He has a history of mistreating dogs at MCAS. For Ron Koper to be “investigating” is a joke, he’s one of the people who was hell-bent on killing Buck and Bill because it made him feel powerful.


  10. Ron Koper is gping to ‘investigate’!?!
    The same Ron Koper who defied a judges oder to kill Buck and Bill 3 hours early so he could rush across town for an award?!?
    Can you say ‘fox guarding the henhouse’?!?


  11. My understanding is Happy Feet is being held in quarantine, out of the view of anyone, and his only caretaker is the same person who is accused of the alleged animal abuse by kicking of Happy Feet and swinging a chair. He needs to be removed and placed elsewhere. This is a conflict of interest and and those requesting an emergency meeting, well we have yet to hear that will happen. The public is watching, and again, they don’t care. The case was sent to Manatee County Sheriff’s office and I would have hoped they would have sent him elsewhere for quarantine, not with the same person who allegedly committed the abuse. Might I add, this “No Kill” shelter is euthanizing fourteen dogs Monday. The reality is that’s what they do and community pleas fall on the deaf ears of those in power. Another black eye for this county. When will it end?


  12. It sounds like the employee needs to be evaluated. Maybe he need to retire. Sounds like he is getting to old to do the job, and that’s ok. It’s a medical fact that senior citizens grow angry as they get on in years realizing thy cannot do the same job they did 5 years ago. A lot can change in a senior from year to year. I’m speaking for myself also, you go from being vibrant and active to where did the time go. Suffering from loss of spouses, long time friends to aching bones. The employee always has an angry look and demeanor about him. Just saying, maybe it’s time for him to cut back on his hours n days of work, and put him in a position that doesn’t hold a lot of responsibility. He should be enjoying his “golden years.”


  13. This surely had a better outcome than I would have predicted. Guess it shows how much influence the “irresponsible public” actually has when we get it together and use it!



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