Welcome to Friday. Our report is long. But part of it – filed in the middle of the night – is a comprehensive description of what happened at Thursday’s Dallas Animal Shelter Commission meeting.
It outlines the challenges of having the animal services department operated by the Code Compliance department. If you’re a taxpayer in the City of Dallas, you may want some of your money back.
The report mentions an incident this week in which a shelter employee, contrary to the wishes of the experienced animal people on the commission, attempted to use a catchpole to remove a frightened cat from the overnight drop box.
That is a photo of the cat – it suffered a broken jaw, strangling, an injured leg and hemorrhaging in its eyes, the commission was told yesterday.
One of our tipsters reports that KittiCo Cat Rescue, the great trap/neuter/release group, took the cat into its care. And yesterday afternoon, the tipster says, Dallas Police went to the shelter and interviewed witnesses for a potential cruelty case regarding the treatment of this animal.
Now, we continue with our daily report:
A HOUSTON SITUATION: No photos with this one, but the words paint a picture of sadness and heartbreak. We got the tip from our Houston pal Alexandra Kelsey who knows this woman through rescue work. It’s a bit of a private matter that needs public support, so I’ll only be listing an e-mail address as the contact. Here’s the story in the wife’s own words:
“I need emergency placement for some 20 or so semi-feral and feral cats. My husband is filing for divorce. I believe his decision to do so is irrational, and related to his brain surgery/recovery and depression. Two months ago we discussed renewing our marriage vows and last week he came home and said he was filing for divorce, so it is obvious there is something really wrong in his head right now. “Because of this, I cannot trust anything he says or does, and I am worried what will happen to the cats if I have to suddenly leave my home. Not only that, but the way he is acting, it wouldn’t surprise me if he came and took them all and dumped them somewhere just to hurt me. My husband has not been the same since his surgery 6 months ago, and I can’t predict what will happen as far as the divorce goes, but regardless of our issues, I have to protect the cats and that means finding them new homes. I hope to get my husband some help and stop this divorce from happening, but with the fact that he has moved out and won’t speak to me, I have little hope of that at this point.
“Please pass this around to anyone you think might be able to help. If I can get my feral babies to safe new homes, then if the divorce goes through, at least I will know they are safe. I have tame cats that I may need placement for eventually, too, but right now the ferals are the ones I am worried about, as even no-kill shelters won’t attempt to place a feral or semi-feral cat. “
To offer to help, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEANWHILE IN DENTON: This cat with the great mask is Zoe – looks like she belongs in the Bat Cave, doesn’t she?
This puts great animals on the euthanasia list. To offer to help save cats, call 940-391-7760 or call the shelter at 940-349-7594. Keep that shelter number handy because you may want to call it about a dog.
For example, we got a tip from our Pointer contact Len West that there’s an English Pointer named Mack (that’s him) in the shelter and on “the list.” Handsome fellow. He’s about 4 years old and came in as a stray.
To ask about adopting Mack or any dog in the Denton shelter, e-mail email@example.com or, again, call the shelter at 940-349-7594.
As Len says, “Texas German Shorthaired Pointer Rescue cannot take these guys because they are overwhelmed with the urgent dogs of the breed they are committed to rescuing ... Reminder, there is no English Pointer rescue in Texas.” That means, Len says, that English Pointers’ best hope is that an all-breed rescue will save them or, against great odds, someone will adopt them.
Of course, not all pointers make it into a shelter – there are the Really Giant Brave All-Should-Fear-Me Hunters who, when the ol’ dog won’t hunt or when they feel like getting a new dog, they just shoot the old one and leave the body in the field. Nice, huh?
People were clicking on “forward” without checking to see if the dogs were safe. And they had a compelling story: Their owner, in Mississippi, is suffering catastrophic health problems and had decided that the two-year-old dogs were going to be killed since she couldn’t find a home for them.
Fortunately these two dogs have been saved. We checked before forwarding the story, before printing the story. Easy thing to do: Just ask a question before forwarding: “Has this situation been resolved?”
So, yes, this has been resolved, but the resolution brings new challenges.
Jodi Bialik of National Great Pyrenees Rescue tells me, “We have taken these dogs.
“They are at a vet’s office being treated for scabies and 1 is HW positive. They are quite underweight. They need some work, but they will be OK. Their vet bill will be about $1,500 which we are setting up a chip-in for. If anybody is interested in fostering/adopting, they can fill out an application at www.nationalpyr.org. We have 168 dogs on our website looking for homes, not including the owner-surrenders and kill shelter-dogs coming in daily. Thank you so much for helping to spread the word on this sad story.”
Jodi says, “I appreciate you asking about the ‘facts.’ People get carried away online and sometimes say mean things. This is not about maligning the woman who had them; she is very ill and did her best. It's about helping these boys get the great life they deserve.”
So, if you get an e-mail that has this subject line “Edwards, MS - 2 Great Pyrs to be Killed by Owner” don’t forward it. Please. Stop the madness.
AND THEN ANOTHER DOG SHOWED UP: Yesterday we reported that Deborah Trevino, one of the rescuers who monitors the Malloy Bridge Road dumping corridor in southeast Dallas, has spotted another dog that needed rescue.
So, when she returned to feed that dog, she reports she could not find him, but nearby, she says, “I found this little guy, Tigger. He's just a baby, so I couldn't bear to leave him there all alone. Please network this boy out, because I can't keep him...no room!”
E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to offer to help with Tigger and other Malloy Bridge Road dumpees.
SHELTER NOTES: The Sachse Animal Shelter joins the ranks of the overloaded. Big press on to adopt out dogs before euthanasia has to start. The shelter is at 6436 Sachse Road. Click HERE.
... From the e-mails we’ve gotten here’s what we can say: “Arlington Animal Services has more purebreds right now than all the backyard breeders in East Texas.” Check out the photos HERE. ... Kathy Nichols, who earlier this week issued an “SOS” for animals in the Farmers Branch Animal Shelter, says help is still needed. “We're holding steady as far as the animals I reported to you in the SOS. We had one adoption yesterday (the lone hound puppy we had ...) and have taken in three more dogs as of last night. Seems that's how it goes ... for every dog that goes, three more come in. I've received some calls specifically asking about Missy and it seems that we have two somewhat promising potential adopters for her.... As for the pit bulls, I just received an email from a lady who has a pit bull rescue in Conroe! She said she can take all of them!! (Did that just make you fall out of your chair, too?) She doesn't have a 501c3 yet so I'll have to do some verifying then try to get approval, but my heart is just zooming from reading her email. That would be such a miracle!” Click HERE to see the adoptables in Farmers Branch.
CONTEMPLATIONS: I hope you’ll read the story of the Dallas Animal Commission’s meeting that follows this segment. You’ll see why these volunteer commissioners are due a special thanks from citizens – they endure long meetings, ask questions and get few answers, have to fight to be influential and still work hard for the animals. The thing to remember that this commission meeting is a key ingredient to the democratic form of government – they are people involved in running their city. You can be involved by attending the meetings, contacting your city council members about what you see and the issues that concern you. It’s America – speak up. You’re entitled.