2010-03-27 / Editorials & Letters

Dog warden, gas chamber still must go

Editor:

On March 18th, a story came out on the website of a local paper reporting that the Licking County Animal Shelter was going to change the way they euthanize. This was merely a ‘smoke and mirrors’ explanation to the HUNDREDS of people who expressed their disappointment to county commissioners via email on this same day.

The newspaper titled this story “Licking County Changing Method Of Animal Euthanasia.” HOWEVER, as you read the story you have to watch words thrown out there by Commissioners Doug Smith and Tim Bubb that can fool you into thinking they actually are making change. Words such as “almost exclusively” and gas will be used only in “rare cases;” the gas chamber will remain an option for overly aggressive animals. ” Bubb says, “We believe our staff is professional and they will make good decisions. But we are trying to get away from gas altogether.” Translation - something stinks and that ‘something’ is the fact that THE COMMISSIONERS STILL HAVE GAS!

The gas chamber needs to be dismantled and removed. As long as it is there it will be “business as usual” for Luzio. His current statistics show that he is deeming 33% of the dogs (that are gassed and/or euthanized at the pound) AGGRESSIVE!

Here’s an example of a “good decision” from their “professional staff.” The morning after this article came out in the paper, Luzio deemed a little dog aggressive and gassed it to death! It was a 30+/- lb. dog that had been on the county website and deemed ADOPTABLE and had been noted by rescues and volunteers as “sweet and loving.” (Remember that he does NOT sedate them before gassing.) In my opinion this is pure retaliation and Luzio is sending a message that he CAN and WILL continue to do what he wants!

I have been told that Luzio told LCAS workers not to vaccinate certain colors of cats because nobody wants them. When questioned why he is slacking on vaccinating cats and his apparent lack of concern for disease control, his answer was for rescues to get the animals out of there quicker. Yes, quite the professional!

This is the same “professional” that was given about a week off for sleeping in his van while on duty and one commissioner wanted to fire him on the spot years ago for coercing and intimidating others. Commissioner Doug Smith commented in the paper that Luzio is “unmatched in his field for technical experience, but can be short-tempered when dealing with the public, something that does not help his case with those who have a bone to pick with the way the shelter is run.”

Don’t you think, Mr. Smith, that someone DEALING with the public should be DECENT to the public rather than restricting the time he has to DEAL with the public?! And how much ‘technical experience’ does he have when he has carried FIVE guns for almost two years without being properly certified or qualified to carry them and allowed people to work there for YEARS without proper training and certification?!

At the end of the day, it comes down to one bottom line…THE COMMISSIONERS ARE TO BLAME for allowing this MISMANAGEMENT to continue and the animals, and the public, are paying the price!

The gas chamber has to go, and so does Jon Luzio!

And, when you go to polls and you see Doug Smith’s name…I ask you to “Just Say NO to Doug’s!”
Bonnie Mansfield
Buckeye Lake

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