The pound in Killeen, TX has been no safe haven for lost and homeless animals:
In late January 2014, former manager Stacie Sherva was fired after allegations surfaced regarding poor sanitary conditions, injured animals left in cages without veterinary care or pain medication, and the adoption of sick dogs and cats.
Volunteers who have helped care for animals at the pound since that time are voicing serious concerns about current operations. Volunteers report animals in cages filled with old urine and feces smeared on the walls. Killeen Police Commander Lee Caufield, who oversees the pound, told the Killeen Daily Herald that he has “reinforced our cleaning policy with all employees”, they’re doing the best they can, blahcetera.
Jerry Hale volunteered at the Killeen pound last October while studying to be a licensed vet tech and told the paper he witnessed two botched dog killings:
“They were just jabbing (the needle) in any place they could,” he said. “They injected them in the stomach, and not intravenously, and they took hours to die.”
Hale said both dogs were still alive when they were placed in plastic bags and moved to a freezer to await incineration.
“I went outside and I threw up,” said Hale, who said he now works as a veterinary technician in Austin. “It was awful.”
Presumably those dogs either suffocated inside their garbage bags, froze to death in the freezer or were burned alive in the incinerator. But despite the Daily Herald identifying Mr. Hale and speaking with him on the record, the police commander claims there were no witnesses:
“In reviewing this issue, we were unable to locate anyone who had any information, other than inferring that someone had told them this happened,” he said. “Different replies had different timelines, and the story itself varied depending on the source.”
Right. Like maybe the dogs suffered for three hours instead of four or they were bagged alive at one o’clock instead of two o’clock or *throws hands in the air* who knows? It’s all too confusing so we’ll just have to forget about the whole thing. But just to show he cares, the police commander did have a vet review the killing protocols and will have that vet “provide refresher training on procedures and protocols” which should set everyone’s mind at ease over the whole living dogs in trash bags thing.
Making matters worse for animals in Killeen, the city is slated to begin enforcing its new mandatory spay-neuter-microchip ordinance this month. MSN has never eliminated or reduced the killing of shelter animals anywhere it’s been tried. It’s a proven failure with some communities seeing an increase in killing after the passage of MSN. This is why MSN is opposed by most every major animal welfare group in the country including the No Kill Advocacy Center, ASPCA, Alley Cat Allies, AVMA, and the American College of Theriogenologists. There is simply no excuse at this point for implementing failed protocols while ignoring those which have been proven to be successful in saving shelter pets. Killeen’s ordinance is particularly ignorant as it requires puppies and kittens to be spayed and neutered at the age of four months.
This is your public animal shelter, Killeen. Demand better.
(Thanks Clarice for the links.)