Alabama ACO Fails to Catch Loose Puppies, Guns Them Down

A litter of friendly puppies who appeared to be suffering from mange turned up near a golf club in Boaz, AL.  Two pups were caught by local rescuers and are being treated for mange before they go up for adoption.  The local ACO was called about the other pups who had wandered into someone’s yard.  The ACO reportedly tried to catch them but was unsuccessful so he shot them to death.  There was a public outcry over the killings on social media.  The Boaz police department, which oversees AC, responded by releasing a statement which reads, in part:

The animal control officer responded to the residence where the dogs had been dropped, and the owner of the property wished the dogs to be removed. The animal control officer noticed that the dogs were covered in mange and appeared to be sickly. However, after several attempts to catch the dogs, the officer was unable to do so and informed the home owner of this fact. After talking with the property owner and with a neighbor, it was decided that to remove the dogs, they would have to be put down. The home owner and neighbor both agreed with the animal control officer that because of the conditions of the dogs and for the safety of the public, it was best to put the dogs down. The officer had no alternative except to remove the dogs due to their conditions and concerns about the health, welfare, and safety of the public.

Guys, GUYS – The Neighbor was consulted and agreed that shooting the puppies was a good idea!  Totes reassured.  But just in case any of you nitpicky animal advocates have any lingering questions:

The Boaz police are investigating the incident to insure that all proper measures were taken and to implement corrective procedures if necessary.

The Neighbor gave the thumbs up and the police are investigating themselves so I guess there’s nothing left to do but fall into enabler mode:

Doug McGee [the rescuer who saved two of the pups] said he’s spoken with [Boaz police chief Scott] Farish about the whole thing and is hopeful the animal control officer made the right call. McGee said it’s a sad situation, and it’s hard for anyone who wasn’t there to know if shooting them was a correct move because of the public safety issues involved. He hopes the officer weighed all the options first.

“I wish he could have come up with a different approach. Sometimes decisions have to be made,” he said.

Yeah it’s hard for anyone who wasn’t there to know if shooting puppies was the right thing to do.  Because sometimes shooting puppies is the right thing to do, apparently.  Although no circumstances jump to mind of when that would be exactly.  But The Neighbor agreed.  And the public is now safe.  From puppies.

Animals:  Controlled.  Well done, Boaz.

(Thanks Clarice for the links.)

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17 Comments

  1. Alice L. Fishbaugh

     /  July 29, 2015

    😬😬😬😬😬😬😬😬😬😬😬😬😬 that was a copout to shoot those puppies, nothing but a heartless, lazy, “fix” to putting some effort into catching those puppies. SHAME on them.

    Reply
  2. Eric Johnson

     /  July 29, 2015

    Since you are condeming the ACO, sight unseen, for his action, how would you have caught the puppies, sight unseen of course.

    Reply
    • I would try several different methods, starting with the classic kneel down-clap hands-say PUPPYPUPPYPUPPY in a friendly voice. If that failed, I’d try grabbing any edible thing close to hand and tossing pieces in their general direction repeatedly so they know it’s food and that I’ve got more. Failing that and all the other methods the average 8 year old could come up with, I’d ask the rescuer who caught two of them for advice. But ultimately, if I was still unsuccessful after all my attempts and could not stay any longer bc I had other duties or whatever, I’d set traps and tell the homeowner to call me when one gets trapped. And if all my traps were in use at other locations and there was no way to obtain an additional trap and I had to leave the location, I’d tell the homeowner that I’d be back as soon as I could but in the meantime here’s my card so you can call me if you catch any of them yourself. Off the top of my head…

      Reply
      • Eric Johnson

         /  July 29, 2015

        How old (big) were the puppies? What mannerisms or behavior did they display? My point is that we don’t have all the facts needed to make a decision between throwing him under a bus and placing him on a pedestal. Absent the facts, we lapse into the mode of the ARists.

      • Eucritta

         /  July 29, 2015

        Actually, we do have enough information to make a pretty good guess. Here, try it:
        https://www.facebook.com/2ndchanceshelter

        The entry should still be at the top, about Link and Birdie. Two hound puppies with mange and worms. If the FB link has gone bad, Shirley’s second link up above, the one about enablers, has a picture of Link and Birdie in the back of a car, on their way to safety.

      • pronghorn canteloupe

         /  July 30, 2015

        I have caught fairly large actually feral puppies with my bare hands. This was not easy but neither was it impossible.

      • db

         /  July 30, 2015

        According to one comment, the woman in the yard actually called the puppies to her and they came, but she didn’t want to touch them. So, I hardly believe that the ACO had no choice but to shoot them dead. Apparently, others have said this is not the first “incident” this ACO has been involved with, but I have nothing to back this up. I just know that it’s not all that hard to catch 4 wiggly butt puppies who probably would have loved a food treat.

    • sarahjaneb

       /  July 29, 2015

      Did you actually read the linked article and look at the pictures, or were you so eager to jump in and defend a puppy shooter that you couldn’t take the time?

      Reply
      • Eric Johnson

         /  July 29, 2015

        I’m really not defending the ACO. I merely want to see the facts of the case, not the emotional response I’ve seen so far.

      • sarahjaneb

         /  July 29, 2015

        Here’s a hint, hon – just because people have engaged their emotions doesn’t mean their responses aren’t also based on the facts. Contrary to popular dudepinion, “emotional” is not synonymous with “illogical” or “not based in fact.” The facts are that these were small, sickly, mangy puppies who posed no immediate threat to anyone. They were not large enough or strong enough to do serious harm to humans, and mange is not a serious public health threat. If it’s demodex mange then humans can’t even catch it at all, and if it’s sarcoptic then humans *might* get a treatable rash if they have close contact with the infected animals.

      • pronghorn canteloupe

         /  July 30, 2015

        Great post sarahjaneb. Exactly what I was thinking about the mange and the “emotion does not exclude logic/facts”.

  3. What the actual hell?

    They’re a health threat, are they? Gosh, two of the litter are now in rescue – maybe they should go to the foster home and gun those two down, too? For safety.

    There are ways to catch puppies. Some of those ways take time. But I guess that’s well beyond Mr. Toughguy ACO. No, much better to shoot puppies IN FRONT OF EACH OTHER so their last moments are full of fear, confusion, and pain. Nice work, officer.

    Reply
  4. Jayson Levine

     /  July 29, 2015

    But…but weren’t the mangy puppies charging the officer? Wasn’t he in fear for his safety?

    Reply
  5. (sighs) (shakes head) RIP little puppies. :(

    Reply
  6. db

     /  July 30, 2015

    I also find it interesting that the ACO could not “hit” them with a tranquilizer gun but managed to kill them with his gun. I’m sure, after looking at the surviving pups, that they presented a huge health and safety hazard to the neighborhood. Considering the neighborhood was adjacent to a golf course . . . that’s just bias on my part. But the thought to “get these scruffy dogs off my lawn” just keeps passing through my mind. RIP Pups I hope karma gets the “dumper”, too. Those pups had the right to live. Sounds like nothing more will be done.

    Reply
  7. BamaBrie

     /  July 30, 2015

    And t think I just met with some city officials to talk to them about an ordinance Boaz adopted 2 weeks ago about chaining and tethering. Okay, as a token member of the Bubba Brigade (meaning I live in the same county and know the players), this was an easy out with deadly consequences. The reasonable go to response had nothing to do with weaponry and it is my hope that this ACO is either disciplined, reassigned, retrained or terminated. There was no public safety risk involved here beyond a treatable skin condition and when I heard about this from about 46 people yesterday, I was livid.

    Some acts are indefensible.

    No wonder the world thinks were stupid. Some of us are.

    Reply
    • db

       /  July 31, 2015

      Thank you for continuing your fight for the animals. We can’t let the stupids win this one. This, truly, is an indefensible act.

      Reply

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