Sam was a 3 year old dog who had been living at the Appomattox Co shelter in Virginia since February. Volunteers who cared for Sam during his stay report that he was a healthy and “extremely gentle” dog. They found an adopter for Sam who had adopted a similar dog from the facility a few years earlier. But when the adopter came to pick Sam up last week, she learned he’d been killed.
Oops. Or not. No one seems to know. But have faith, the county investigated itself:
In a news release Wednesday afternoon, County Attorney J.G. Overstreet said: “it appears that the matter was handled properly and in accordance with state law.”
Because the dog’s holding period had expired. Therefore, kill at will. All legal. Yay.
Then there’s this, apparently pulled out of someone’s ass:
“From staff’s perspective, you had a dog that was becoming more anti-social over time,” Piney Mountain Supervisor Sara Carter said of Sam […]. “They didn’t know of any adopter … the decision was made to euthanize.”
Becoming more anti-social over time. Could you please be a little more vague? The dog lived in a shelter for 7 months. Was there some expectation that he would grow cheerier over time? Didn’t know of any adopter. Did anyone uh, ask? Because knowledge does not always fall upon you from the sky like you’d hope.
In response to public outcry over Sam’s killing, the county closed the shelter to the public, citing unspecified threats that were not reported to police. They also tried a different assplanation for the killing:
We apologize for it and we now have got a policy in place to correct it,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman, Sam Carter.
Carter told ABC 13 that the county is conducting an internal investigation into the matter and that “there will be corrections made.”
As to what those will be, Carter would not comment specifically.
When I put this into my bureaucracy translator, all that comes up is, “Blah, blah, blah.”
Carter also said, that a text sent to one of the shelter staff on September 6th, regarding Sam’s potential adopter coming to get him, was not confirmation of a firm adoption.
So staff got a text saying an adopter was coming to get Sam but staff “didn’t know of any adopter” because a text is not “confirmation”. Is there a blood ceremony required to confirm an adoption? What did the text do, just put it in staff’s mind that an adopter was coming for the dog but it wasn’t confirmed therefore, go right ahead and kill? Dang, I think *I* am becoming more anti-social over time.
The county animal warden, Micki Caifano, on the job since July 1st, reportedly authorized Sam’s killing and took him to a private vet to have it done. The warden has not provided any reason for the killing. Animal advocates want an explanation. And:
[Advocates] are disturbed because they say shelter cameras were turned off at the time and they want proof from the county as to how Sam spent his last hours.
Turning off the security cameras at the time you are taking a dog you know has an adopter out for killing sounds legit. Especially with the NO REASON explanation.
I hope animal advocates in Appomattox keep after these chuckleheads. They clearly need it.
(Thanks Lisa and Clarice.)