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Animals come last at dog pound



Editor:

The Licking County Animal Shelter’s Use Of Force guidelines has eight sections but they are all numbered #1. Even though the male pound employees are carrying guns, mace, batons (billy clubs), handcuffs, and driving vehicles with lights and sirens they still have to call the police, according to their policy manual, if they feel threatened.

Section number 1 (but really #2) says: “Should a Deputy Warden encounter a violent or threatening person or persons while on duty, that Deputy Warden will make every effort, within reason, to return to his/her vehicle or other safe place to avoid any physical conflict. The Deputy will then summon assistance from the appropriate police department.” Don’t get me wrong…I think they SHOULD call the police but I also don’t think they need to be carrying guns, batons and handcuffs! They are trained as dog catchers, not police officers!

If the dog wardens use their mace or baton against a HUMAN, they have to complete a Use of Force (UOF) report as soon as possible and give it to a supervisor.

But if they mace an animal or beat it with the baton, they only need to submit a UOF report if a supervisor asks for one.

This new policy manual, created by Dog Warden Shellhouse, appears to have been borrowed in part from Franklin County’s manual. But, Licking County is no Franklin County. Franklin County takes in about 10,000 dogs per year. Licking County takes in around 600.

Although the Licking County pound operates on a budget of more than $600,000 annually and can buy guns, tasers, bullet proof vests, new cell phones, tablets, new vehicles for the employees to drive home, and other human accesories….apparently they can’t buy BASIC SUPPLIES. On the front page of their website is a notice that reads “The Licking County Animal Shelter is currently in need for basic supplies and is accepting donations. We have created a shelter Wish List of items that are needed…” On that wish list are items such as laundry detergent, dog biscuits, dog toys, mop heads, cleaning pads, trash bags, etc.

The pound cut back on services but increased their budget considerably! Rescue groups and citizens are doing the job the pound should be doing (i.e. catching and holding stray dogs so they aren’t killed or injured on the streets because the pound closes at 4pm — or won’t answer the phone on Sundays even though they’re open — or they simply won’t pick up a dog after the pound closes because it isn’t injured yet).

It is apparent that the needs of the animals come LAST at the Licking County Animal Shelter (dog pound). BASIC SUPPLIES should be bought FIRST!

More to come…

Bonnie Mansfield
Buckeye Lake



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