I have been placing rescue holds in a desperate attempt to buy these animals more time, since you have consistently refused to follow the letter of the law as well as the expressed intent that “no adoptable or treatable animal should be euthanized” by putting in place basic changes to allow access and promote adoption and since every member of Stockton City Government has refused to take action to bring your agency into compliance with relevant laws.
Not one, but three dogs on whom I had placed rescue holds were killed in violation of state law, which says that the shelter will release any animal to any statutorily authorized rescue group that requests the animal before it is euthanized (Food & Agricultural Code Sections 31108(b) and 31752(b)). The shelter will have no policies or practices that obstruct or restrict the release of such animals and will not euthanize any animal when it is known that rescue is available.. With the first two (A189082 and A189083), I had left voicemail messages and not followed up with email. Voicemail should have been enough but since it wasn’t I was very careful to email as well when placing a hold on A189170.
I also witnessed several injured dogs who appeared not to have received veterinary care. When I wrote about two of them, I received the following message, unsigned, from the email address firstname.lastname@example.org:
“Good Morning, I am sorry I was in and out all day yesterday. I checked on all three of these dogs and found that the 2 chiahuahau’s came in directly from the vet so they had care. The large white dog has old wounds.
I was asked by the kennel staff to inquire when you will be able to pull A188662, A189046, and A189038. I will be here all morning so please call or let me know just as soon as you can. 209-9377xxx”
I did not immediately reply and did not receive any further communication, but rather the “large white dog” was killed the next morning. I have been told that at least one of the chihuahuas “came in directly from the vet” not because your agency provided necessary veterinary care but because your agency allowed a veterinarian to illegally abandon him at your pound, in violation of California Civil Code Section 1834.5 and 1834.6, which articulates the responsibilities of depositories of living animals, including veterinarians. Veterinarians are specifically forbidden by Section 1834.6 from turning in abandoned animals to the pound. Once in the pound, A189171, the one with the open neck wound and drain, was apparently placed where water from hosing down the kennels soaked his bedding, adding to the risk of infection. I am told that he was held with no antibiotics or pain medication from 9-13-12 until Eleanor Triboletti picked him up for Pups Rescue on September 18, and that at first, your staff refused to release him saying that his hold period wasn’t up, just like A186033.
You and your staff should know the relevant law and if it is true that he was turned in by a veterinarian, should not have accepted that dog. Since you break state and local law with impunity, even while under investigation, I suppose Stockton’s government does not consider that following the law matters for its employees.
I am asking Chief Jones, Mayor Johnston, and the City Council to declare an immediate moratorium on killing any but irremediably suffering animals, unweaned animals impounded without their mothers, and dogs that have already been documented to be “vicious,” to remove you from your position in which you have willfully violated the law since you began work in Stockton, and to seek emergency assistance from animal welfare foundations to care for Stockton animals and bring the agency into compliance with the law.
Eileen McFall, Ph.D.
Injured chihuahuas A189171 and A189114
- A186033, also held without veterinary care