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Letter: How many animals are turned away?


Editor: This is in regard to the article in the Lodi News-Sentinel published July 19, 2017 with the headline, “Abandoned puppy recovering after hit by car.”

I checked the city’s website (www.lodi.gov; City Departments; Police Department; Animal Services) and found that the last time Animal Services statistics were posted was for the year 2015.

The City of Lodi’s animal shelter tracks a lot of information; however, it does not keep track of the number of times they refuse an animal surrender on the grounds that the facility is full. If callers or those who come to the facility are routinely told “no, we can’t take your pet because we don’t have room” how can the police department accurately report to the city council on what the unserved needs of the community are?

This vital information is also needed in order to properly manage the facility and plan for the future. Is it possible that people are abandoning their pets at these facilities after hours because they were told “no” by the shelter representatives when they inquired about relinquishing their pet?

It is impossible to answer that question without requiring that this data be tracked and reported on in a public forum (e.g. annual report to the city council prior to budget adoption).

Susan Blackston