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Postby airwalk » September 13th, 2011, 9:45 pm

TheRedQueen wrote:Also...dogs and cats get sold for Vet schools. My friend went to a dental clinic years ago, so she could learn how to clean teeth...she walked in, and was horrified to see rows upon rows of tables with dog heads on them. All shelter dogs. :(


Again, is it better that those that have died serve a bigger purpose or should they just be cremated.
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Postby airwalk » September 13th, 2011, 9:48 pm

TheRedQueen wrote:I understand that the ultimate goal is to adopt out animals...and in a perfect world, that's all they do...but life sucks, and they put most, I'd guess, down.

And I can see where shelters have to lie to some extent...because I know people that wouldn't go near a shelter with a ten foot pole (to donate, to adopt, etc) if they knew the REAL statistics...not just the 95% of "adoptable" animals and such.

Where are some of our shelter directors to help us on this one?


See Erin, I don't think shelters need to lie. We don't! My stats are public record and I don't spin numbers.

In a perfect world people would understand that a commitment to an animal is longer than as long as the animal is convenient - that dogs make messes - that dogs require training - that new babies don't have to oust the dog - but they don't and until they do shelters are a necessary public service. If we aren't there, who provides care? Who euthanizes animals who are too dangerous to return to the community? Who provides release to the dogs whose quality of life has deteriorated to a point it is no longer humane to ask them to adjust again? Who keeps dogs from running in packs?
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Postby airwalk » September 13th, 2011, 9:48 pm

BTW - sorry to have to respond this way, but my computer was having a problem with one long post..so I had to split it up.
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Postby mnp13 » September 13th, 2011, 10:04 pm

Thank you for responding Diana.

There is a local shelter that I've pulled from that puts every animal in the place down that has gone past the 72 hour mandatory hold. Monday and Thursday. The big name shelter in my area sends dogs there to up their numbers, because a "shelter transfer" is not a kill.
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Postby airwalk » September 13th, 2011, 10:21 pm

I have no doubt there are shelters that operate like the description, I just think that if that is truly a Shelter Manager, perhaps they should be expending their efforts to educate and change the practices they find objectionable rather than write letters that paint pictures as if every shelter operates the same way.

Sorry, but I always find it offensive when a shelter operates poorly and wants to use the excuse "everybody does it". As my Mother used to ask "if everyone jumped off a cliff would you do it to?".

And yep with the Asilomar Accords now in play nationwide and the Maddie's Fund dangling $1M in front of regions, there is pressure to spin and play with numbers...but again we don't all do it.

Our shelter has not euthanized a healthy dog this year and last year we only euthanized 2. For my money that is pretty amazing work by a dedicated team....to some folks in our region..that is horrible I should have waited until the 2 healthy dogs crashed so I could call them a different classification. Sorry I don't play that way.
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Postby madremissy » September 13th, 2011, 11:16 pm

Kudos to you Diana!!!! :clap: I applaud the way you run your shelter. My hope would be that they all were as run as well.
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Postby airwalk » September 13th, 2011, 11:37 pm

Maybe I'm just naive..but I truly do not understand why they can't all run this way. I don't see that we do anything hugely amazing, we struggle to balance the budget every year..we work our butts off..so I just don't understand why anyone would operate any differently. :|
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Postby TheRedQueen » September 13th, 2011, 11:45 pm

airwalk wrote:Maybe I'm just naive..but I truly do not understand why they can't all run this way. I don't see that we do anything hugely amazing, we struggle to balance the budget every year..we work our butts off..so I just don't understand why anyone would operate any differently. :|


Because other people don't care. :| The community, the shelter employees, the city/town...

It'd be nice if they all ran like yours...
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Postby airwalk » September 14th, 2011, 12:14 am

and when it comes to shelter staff that just baffles me. How can you do this job and not care? I've never quite figured that out. Shelter work is hard work physically, mentally and emotionally - so why would you do it if you didn't care, there are certainly less physically demand, mentally demanding and emotionally draining ways to make money.
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Postby plebayo » September 15th, 2011, 11:38 pm

I have to agree, from your posts here [and on the website] Clackamas has me truly impressed. That is why I did the secret santa thing at your shelter and not my county's shelter [bonnie hays]. I'm afraid our county shelter is run much like described. I have met one of the vets who works there - she did some relief work for us two years ago when one vet went on maternity leave she seemed to like her job but in dealing with our county shelter and its other employees I picture our shelter much like what was described here. And Bonnie Hays/Washington County claims to be no kill but that isn't true by any means. I know they're running things a little bit better than before because they have some help from local rescues but the staffing hasn't improved, their attitudes are horrible and it seems like only the volunteers really enjoy their time there. I also know their shelter technician isn't actually a certified vet tech but she did become certified to perform euthanasia's. I don't know if they use pre injections or not so I can't say but I do know this girl went from grooming dogs/working the till at petsmart to being the "technician" at the shelter. Not saying blood drawing is rocket science but it does take a skilled hand to make a euthanasia go smoothly.

But I do definitely understand what you're saying, this article definitely paints a bad picture for shelters in general which isn't very fair. But I do think so many people don't realize that shelter life isn't all rainbows and butterflies, good animals fall through the cracks and people should think seriously before dumping their pets on other people.
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Postby HappyChick » September 16th, 2011, 11:29 am

airwalk wrote:
HappyChick wrote:
mnp13 wrote:
However, do shelters really get paid to put animals down? Before I re-post this, I'd like that substantiated.


At our local shelter, the vet (shelter administrator) gets paid for her time to go out and check, vaccinate, euthanize the animals. Our shelter also sells the "bodies" to a research lab. They get $10 a piece for the dogs and I think $6 for the cats. Sad, but true.


You're right it is sad...but let me ask a question....would it be better for the body to be sold to somewhere that can serve a purpose or simply be cremated?


I believe that as long as the whole process is done with the intent of carrying out a necessary job, I have no problem with the bodies being used for scientific purposes. Better dead specimens to work on than live ones.

Our local shelter is run by the County, not our Humane Society. The question has come up more than once about the dollars and cents the County gets/pays to run the shelter. It has been pointed out in several conversations with employees/volunteers/Humane Society members that a dead animal makes the County some money while ones who are adopted out or go to rescue just cost the county money. The longer an animal is there the more money it costs the County. I don't mind the County using various means to make money to keep the place going, but when people (and yes there are county board members who think this way so I am told) want animals to hurry up and be euthanized instead of feeding them for more than 21 days, I've got a serious problem with the whole system. The county board member who is "in charge" of the shelter business told one ACO that all dogs who are there over 21 days should be euthanized immediately because "we aren't running a doggy motel out there." Thank goodness we are fortunate enough to have ACOs who will let a dog stay more than 21 days if there is room.

Diana, you know that it should always be about the animals, but money is a huge factor.

I do not agree with some things in that article because they are not true of many shelters, but I know they are true of some. I think it depends on the area of the country in which the shelter is located and who is running the shelter.
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Postby airwalk » September 17th, 2011, 12:29 am

You're right money is always a huge factor. There is no doubt about it. I run a business, it may be a humane business, but it is still a business and my Board of Directors hold me responsible for the how and why and when we spend resources. I better be able to show them the value to them for the resources expended.

That doesn't mean dogs dont' stay until they find options - it means it's my job to be sure that the Board understands why it's in the Boards best interest for the dogs to stay - it's my job to ensure they realize that the per unit cost of retaining that piece of merchandise is not where the real value is...the real value is in the perception, perspective and voting power of their constituency and that those people expect us to run a humane business.

It's always a tough balancing act.
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Postby iluvk9 » September 17th, 2011, 6:20 am

This was a recent HORROR story at a Long Island town shelter...(Hempstead) To jump to the good ending, I will tell you that new management has been implemented. But it was beyond belief what was going on. :sad2: It has recently changed...for the better. Including volunteers and staff who, IMO, actually LIKE animals.

The abuse:
http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2010/11/10/ ... g-animals/

Director (WHO MADE $92,000 A YEAR) resigns:
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/hemp ... WoHIP7QwSL
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Postby fenella » October 31st, 2011, 9:09 pm

I also know of shelters that are run in the way described. One I am familiar with automatically euthed all bully breeds, black dogs, and anything that had any sort of behavior issue. Only puppies, small breeds, and super-friendly golden retriever type dogs made it. Even then, nothing lasted more than 72 hours.
I agree that the article is sensational in a way, and also makes it seem live every shelter is like that.
As I picked up my latest addition, I overheard the shelter workers telling the people bringing in dogs that their pet would be euthanized. One guy had a big mixed breed dog that has had housebreaking issues. He said they "tried everything" and the dog won't stop peeing. He actually seemed shocked when they explained to him that he wouldn't be adopted. They asked him. "If you couldn't stop the dog from peeing, what makes you think a potential adopter would?" They also told him that with an issue like that, the risk that the new owner would take their frustrations out on the dog would be too high. They, too, told him that he could do a voluntary euth., and he decided to leave.
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Postby Tubular Toby » November 1st, 2011, 1:26 am

fenella wrote:I also know of shelters that are run in the way described. One I am familiar with automatically euthed all bully breeds, black dogs, and anything that had any sort of behavior issue. Only puppies, small breeds, and super-friendly golden retriever type dogs made it. Even then, nothing lasted more than 72 hours.
I agree that the article is sensational in a way, and also makes it seem live every shelter is like that.
As I picked up my latest addition, I overheard the shelter workers telling the people bringing in dogs that their pet would be euthanized. One guy had a big mixed breed dog that has had housebreaking issues. He said they "tried everything" and the dog won't stop peeing. He actually seemed shocked when they explained to him that he wouldn't be adopted. They asked him. "If you couldn't stop the dog from peeing, what makes you think a potential adopter would?" They also told him that with an issue like that, the risk that the new owner would take their frustrations out on the dog would be too high. They, too, told him that he could do a voluntary euth., and he decided to leave.



How sad. I wonder if he ruled out health problems as a cause for the peeing. =( Did he take the dog with him or leave it?
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Postby TheRedQueen » November 1st, 2011, 9:29 am

Tubular Toby wrote:How sad. I wonder if he ruled out health problems as a cause for the peeing. =( Did he take the dog with him or leave it?


He hadn't brought the dog in...he drove off with it. Who knows what will happen next. The trainer part of me wanted to speak up, but I didn't...

There was also a guy that brought in his peeing cat...they told him that it would be PTS immediately, since they can't adopt out a cat with peeing issues. He was teary, but he left the cat. I mean, at least take the cat to the vet for that...not the shelter. *sigh*
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Postby airwalk » November 1st, 2011, 9:53 pm

Oh yes, we see and hear every reason and excuse under the sun...just the other day, we had an owner surrendered adorable 6 month old dark brindle Boxer baby. She was surrendered for chasing and killing chickens...ooookkkaaayyy...that is a trainable and manageable behavior. When I read through the surrender info form....the question "where does this dog stay when you aren't at home"...answer "outside in a fenced yard'. Oh yeah and we are surprised this puppy chased chickens, and how did the puppy have access to chickens.

I read the vet records and this same puppy had been seen at 3 moths of ingestion of rat poison. >( Seriously people.

She is the sweetest, most temperamentally sound pup I've met in a long while. She will be going to a home tomorrow that understands she is a puppy and needs to be part of the family.

Now the icing on the cake...the same guy that surrendered her, brought his daughter in later the same day to pick out another dog :| soooo isn't going to happen from our shelter.
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Postby mnp13 » November 1st, 2011, 9:58 pm

airwalk wrote:Now the icing on the cake...the same guy that surrendered her, brought his daughter in later the same day to pick out another dog :| soooo isn't going to happen from our shelter.

How to teach your child that animals are disposable.... :mad2:
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Postby furever_pit » November 2nd, 2011, 12:28 am

airwalk wrote:Now the icing on the cake...the same guy that surrendered her, brought his daughter in later the same day to pick out another dog :| soooo isn't going to happen from our shelter.


Woah. Seriously? Are you allowed to tell him no and why?
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Postby SisMorphine » November 2nd, 2011, 3:16 pm

airwalk wrote:Now the icing on the cake...the same guy that surrendered her, brought his daughter in later the same day to pick out another dog :| soooo isn't going to happen from our shelter.

Wow. I don't even know what to say about that.

TheRedQueen wrote:I mean, at least take the cat to the vet for that...not the shelter. *sigh*

Many vets won't euth a healthy animal.
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