The Whitfield Co pound in GA has some “animal facts” on its webpage that the county likes so much, it printed them twice. They read, in part:
Dogs and cats out number humans in this country at a ratio of about 6 to 1. […]
Pet overpopulation is a serious and growing problem in the United States. It is estimated that between 10 to 20 million companion animals are unwanted and put to death every year.
The U.S. Census Bureau says there are approximately 318,649,000 people in the US. If dogs and cats outnumbered humans 6 to 1 in this country, that would indicate a dog and cat population of roughly 2 billion. Which would make it a tad difficult to get to work, what with all the freeways piled high with kittens, let alone the mountains of puppies covering the sidewalks.
The ASPCA says there are an estimated 144 – 176 million owned dogs and cats in the U.S. and that each year, shelters kill approximately 2.7 million pets.
I guess no one at the Whitfield Co pound majored in math. Or Google. Or reality.
Last month, a dog named Wiz bit a kid in Whitfield Co. Wiz was not current on his rabies vaccination so he was impounded by the county for a standard 10 day rabies quarantine. After the holding period expired, the owner called the pound to make arrangements to bring Wiz back home. But Whitfield Co had already killed Wiz because the person doing the killing couldn’t count to 10. Because math is hard:
[County administrator Mark] Gibson said the employee claimed to have made a mathematical mistake in adding up the number of days since the dog had been brought in. So he euthanized the wrong dog.
Oops. All two of the Whitfield Co pound employees have been suspended by the board of commissioners as a result of the killing – the director for 5 days and the guy who killed Wiz for 2 days. And the county has instituted several changes at the pound to prevent a similar type of oops-killing from happening in future. Specifically:
- Owners will be called at the end of the quarantine period to let them know their pet will be killed if not reclaimed.
- Animals being held on rabies quarantine will be separated from the general population and have their cages marked with the date the quarantine expires.
- The one guy who attempts to count to 10 to determine when the holding period ends needs to turn in his homework to the other guy for a double check. Hopefully between the two of them, they might get it right.
The fact that they weren’t calling owners before killing their quarantined pets or separating rabies holds from other animals is shocking. The math thing is just frightening.
The director and the other employee both said they feel their punishment for killing Wiz is fair. The chairman of the board of commissioners also thinks it’s fair. As does commissioner Harold Brooker, third cousin to the pound director. No word from Wiz’s family on how fair they feel the punishment is but it’s swell to know the good ol’ boys are all satisfied.
(Thanks Arlene for the link.)