Doggy Dispute: Seymour Animal Shelters in Disagreement

A Texoma city is in the center of a dog fight. Seymour city officials and a local no-kill shelter are at ends over a dispute involving dogs from the city pound. A local no-kill shelter, Happy Tails Doggie Care has been working in conjunction with the Seymour dog pound for nearly a year. Often times the shelter would acquire dogs from the city pound for free that would normally be euthanized and rehome them and then find a home for the pet outside of the county. Now things have changed and the no-kill shelter can no longer do so unless they're willing to fork over the money to buy the dogs.   

Susan Lee and her friend Debra expanded their Doggie Day Care into a no-kill shelter months ago, "We have a heart for animals," said Lee.

Lee says they feed, wash, and provide medical care for the dogs. For nearly a year Susan Lee says she had been working with the local animal shelter. After a dog had been there for
the required amount of time, which can range anywhere from a total of 7 days for untagged dogs and 12 days for tagged dogs they would get permission from animal control to take some dogs to the shelter and rehome them, saving its life, but an incident that happened recently changed that.

"A girl came to look at a dog that we had here," said Lee. "She wanted a pit bull and I said there's another one in our pound that is due to be euthanized. I said if you want to go look at that one you might save a life."

So they went to the city animal shelter. A police officer escorted them to look and play with the pit bull. The girl decided she wanted the dog so the officer let her have it, but there was a problem. The dog hadn't been there for the required number of days, if it belonged to someone the owner still had time to claim it.

"There was some misrepresentation I believe so I just chose to go back to our standard procedure," said Seymour Police Chief Mike Griffin.

Chief Griffin feels there was some misrepresentation on the womens part, but when asked in what way he would not elaborate.

"They are more than welcome to adopt any animals from the shelter but it's going to be strictly by the book this time," he said.

That means the women must now pay like everyone else to get a dog, which can range anywhere from $66 dollars and up.

"We don't want to see anything happen to the dogs anymore than everybody else but that's a task that the city is left to take care of," said John Studer with the City of Seymour.

So now instead of giving away dogs that would be put down, those dogs have no other option, over a mistake the women feel was not on their part.

"We hope that the city sees that's it's better financially and as a community to let us have the animals to rehome," said Lee.

City officials say right now they are still investigating the case since many including the mayor were unaware of what was going on.

Crystal Hall
Newschannel 6.