AAS has now has a story up on the latest family pet to be euthanized at the WCRAS, Shelter euthanizes dog while owner tried to retrieve her.
When Jose Martinez of Hutto lost his dog last week, he was relieved to find her Tuesday at the Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter.
He was escorted to the back of the shelter, where he identified his pit bull, Lady.
But as he filled out the paperwork to reclaim her, unknowing shelter staffers euthanized the dog.
Shelter manager Ethel Spence called Martinez over.
“We walked into her office; she closed the door and said, ‘We just euthanized your dog,’ ” he said.
Spence said the dog’s death was an accident.
The staff member who had accompanied Martinez was new, Spence said, and didn’t realize that Lady had been tagged for euthanization because she had tried to bite two shelter workers. When Martinez and the staff member went to fill out paperwork, another staffer took the dog to be euthanized.
“It was a very, very freak and unfortunate event,” Spence said. “I know how I would feel if it was my pet. All we can do is learn from a mistake and prevent it from happening again.”
It seems a little odd that animals are getting euthanized so quickly for “biting”. It would seem that dogs in a foreign environment like this would be a little edgy and prone to acting out of character. Meaning it would seem that at an animal shelter they’d be a little more forgiving than this. It appears the latest pet owner is now considering taking legal action.
Martinez is considering legal action and has hired Austin attorney Bill Aleshire, who also represents the Angelles.
“Why did it take another dog to change their policy?” Martinez said. “They say she was aggressive, but I went to pick her up, and they killed her while I was there.”
The Williamson County sheriff’s office is looking into whether an offense was committed, Detective John Foster said.
Here’s the letter [.PDF] the AAS has linked from Mr. Aleshire to Sheriff Wilson. The last line says it all.
I’ve been searching for any Williamson County elected official who gives a damn about this mess at the Shelter and will try to fix it. Are you the one?