Saturday, January 26, 2013

Disappointment with some of our NC County Animal Shelters

I don't know of another business that would be allowed to operate in North Carolina for over 8 years, still need to educated by State Inspectors about the accountability of their job and not be accessed heavy civil penalty fines other than our County Animal Shelter System.

In 1977 the North Carolina General Assembly enacted an "Animal Welfare Act" to ensure that animals, as items of commerce, are provided humane care and treatment by regulating the transportation, sale, purchase, housing, care, handling and treatment of animals by persons or organizations engaged in transporting, buying or selling them. This Act is intended to protect animals confined in pet shops, kennels, public and private animal shelters, and auction markets. For the purposes of this Act, "animal," as defined by General Statute 19A-23, includes only domestic dogs and cats. This should not be confused with county-operated animal shelters that are regulated by county governments and their officials. State issued certificates or licenses are required for animal shelters, pet shops, boarding kennels and dealers. Criminal penalties are provided for the operation of a pet shop, kennel, animal shelter, etc., without a license.

In 2005 the North Carolina Animal Welfare Section was created and placed under the jurisdiction of the North Carolina Department of Agriculture. This new NC AWS is to over see our County Animal Shelters, Pet Shops, Boarding facilities and Kennels. State Inspectors were hired, and the State of North Carolina was divided up by counties between these new Inspectors. The job of these State Inspectors is to make sure these facilities are following the NC Animal Welfare Act along with better understanding how to care for the animals in all those cages. This would include a cleaning protocol, feeding of caged animals, the enclosures in which hold these animals, ambient temperature, intake, adoption, euthanasia and more.

Going on 8 years now why would these State Inspectors still need to explain to these County Animal Shelters that you must remove mold from the food bins, that you must feed adult animals once a day and if they are puppies and kittens they must be feed 2 times a day, that all animals must have access to fresh clean water 24-7, that dead animals must be removed from the kennels, to sanitize to help stop the spread of disease, to maintain an ambient temperature for these animals while in their care, to not hose down the kennels/cages with the animals still in their kennels/cages, to give each animal a resting platform and more?

If you can not follow the standards of the NC AWA and NC AWS after 8 years then the County and State needs to cut their losses and employee someone who can. It's inexcusable that after Inspection after Inspection we still find  many North Carolina County Animal Shelters not preforming the basic needs for the live animals that find their way into their care. And we wont even speak of the animals that find their way into the euthanasia room of these same Shelters.

Why is this still acceptable in 2013? Not feeding an animal, denying them access to fresh clean water let alone not keeping their area clean is listed as animal cruelty by the NC General Statues and it punishable by law and with heavy civil penalties to be accessed, so why are these same County Animal Shelters getting a free pass after 8 years and not being accessed the civil penalties either?

Example pictured below is of Rowan County Animal Shelter, but this is not just about Rowan as if you look you can find this same neglect care being given to the animals in just about any other County in NC.

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