It'* a bit of a long story, but recently an animal shelter in Ohio gassed a Chihuahua, 2 hours after it was made available for adoption, and apparently before the doors were even unlocked for visitors. Apparently this is common practice at this shelter.
The really sad thing is there was a list of people willing to adopt the dog.
I called the local TV station in Cleveland, and they felt the situation was severe enough to warrant an on camera interview (Done last Friday). I'm in the process of obtaining the clip, will post it and it'* URL when I have it up. I did this because there are far too many scam emails asking people to do this or that, in some attempt at humor. I've checked this one out, it'* legit. I even called the shelter. Talk about a bunch of bastards.
Two things I'd like to ask:
1) Sign a petition to bring more attention to this matter. It takes about 3 minutes:
2) Write a letter to the city leaders who are in charge of this matter. Here'* a copy of a letter I just sent: (Email addresses can be seen in the header section)
(The end of this message contains the text of the message I originally received, which led to all this. Thanks for bearing through this rather long post).
Date: Wed, 16 May 2007 14:46:11 -0700 (PDT)
From: "Matt Morgan"
Subject: Shelter concerns
Lori, Ted, Betty -
I'm writing this letter from Kansas City, Missouri. News of the recent slaughter of the Chihuahua at your shelter is reaching far and wide across the country. I'm in the process of obtaining a clip of the recent television interview at your shelter, and I intend to make it permanently available on the Internet, to serve as an example of how not to run a shelter, and as an example of how city leaders choose to ignore their duties.
Perhaps it hasn't occurred to you, but when a television station comes to interview you - you have severe problems that need to be addressed.
You may feel slaughter is a bit too strong of a word. But it'* an accurate description of what happened. There is absolutely no reason to put down an animal when there are people who are willing to adopt, and the time frames under which the slaughter occurred are absolutely inexcusable.
Taking the life of an animal is an extremely difficult thing to do. Still, facts are facts, budgets are budgets, and tough decisions must be made.
The key work here is DECISION. This animal could have easily been saved, if you had an animal control officer who really cared. In my opinion, Jack Szlempa has no business being in the animal control office. I don't know the man, perhaps he'* the nicest person on the planet. His actions indicate otherwise. At the very least, they demonstrate a lack of caring and very poor decision making abilities.
I ask you to please remove this man from his position. His behavior has clearly demonstrated he has no compassion for the animals he is charged with. It appears to me that this has just become a 'job' for him. Taking the life of an animal should cause emotional pain every time it'* done, even if they know there simply is nothing else that can be done. If Jack isn't up to this responsibility - then replace him.
Jack'* decision was appalling, and I for one will not stop until some disciplinary action is taken with respect to this individual. I ask you to please take action on this matter immediately, before more tragedies such as this happen again.
I also called the shelter, and they told me that they followed the letter of the law, which I'm sure is true. Perhaps in the future you could keep in mind that when it comes to living things, a bit of compassion is best mixed with the 'letter of the law'.
Please feel free to call me anytime to discuss this, if you feel you have the perspicacity to do so.
> --- BBINancy@aol.com
> > *** PLEASE CROSS_POST ***
> > Dog Warden Jack Szlempa Sr. of Lorain County, OH
> > gassed a 5 lb teacup
> > chihuahua. The dog was first available on May 8
> > when the pound opened at 10 a.m.
> > Warden Szlempa gassed him 8 a.m. on May 8, two hrs
> > before the pound opened on
> > the dog'* first available day. Several people had
> > called wanting the dog,
> > and a rescuer had offered to take him to the vet.
> > Warden Szlempa has
> > apparently given out two different stories, one that
> > the dog was sick, the other
> > that it was "vicious".... !! A 5 lb teacup chi ...
> > ?
> > According to Deb Parker of the wonderful St. Francis
> > Animal Sanctuary in
> > Vermillion OH, this has happened before.
> > PLEASE HELP THEM REACH THEIR GOAL OF 5,000
> > SIGNATURES!
> > ************************************** See what'*
> > free at http://www.aol.com
> > > Subject: Please Sign Petition: "Why did I die?
> > URGENT!"
> > Date: Mon, 14 May 2007 11:08:55 -0400
> > From: "LoBalbo, Cathy"
> > To: undisclosed-recipients:;
> > Dear Friends,
> > I have just read and signed the petition: "Why did
> > I die? URGENT!"
> > The Lorain County Pound in OH is destroying dogs on
> > the date they become
> > available for adoption two hours before the pound
> > doors open. The dogs
> > never have a chance to be
> > seen by the public or be adopted.
> > Please take a moment to read about this important
> > issue, and join me in
> > signing the petition. It takes just 30 seconds, but
> > can truly make a
> > difference. We are trying to reach 5,000 signatures
> > - please sign here:
> > http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/350146472
> > Once you have signed, you can help even more by
> > asking your friends and
> > family to sign as well.
> > Thank you!
> > Cathy LoBalbo