Saturday, July 31, 2010

How Stupid Can a Shelter Worker Be?

This one takes the case, if for no other reason that a "wildlife expert" was consulted.

An American Kennel Club-registered dog has been turned loose in the wild after the Frankfort Humane Society mistook her for a coyote. Copper is a female Shiba Inu.

Lori Goodlett told The State-Journal her pet of 11 years disappeared from her fenced back yard on July 3. It was after she put up posters that a police officer recognized Copper as the dog he had taken to the shelter. A shelter worker later called police and said it had to be picked up because coyotes weren't allowed there.

The department turned the animal loose behind a home improvement store after consulting with a wildlife expert who said coyotes were nuisance animals and should be returned to the wild or killed.

Humane Society board chairman John Forbes said he backs the shelter's decision.

"If our manager assessed the animal to be a coyote, then it is against the law for it to be at the shelter. We rely on the people who work there," Forbes said.

Of course the dog had no collar, and you can bet it had no chip. Nor (apparently) had the owners taken a picture of the dog to all the local shelters and pounds. Nor does the dog look very much like a Shiba Inu. That said, the fact that the animal quietly followed the officer when put on a leash might suggest it was a family owned dog and not a coyote! Here's a hint for shelter workers and self-proclaimed "wildlife experts": If a police officer or a suburbanite can catch the animal and load it into a crate with their bare hands, it's NOT a coyote!


ayk said...

Actually, I think it very reasonable that the dog could be a Shiba, abet a senior female Shiba. Please take a look at this Shiba Veterans gallery.

PBurns said...

A bit like the top two, though longer in the snout.

Mongoose said...

Actually, I have a Canadian and American champion shiba inu and I totally think she looks like a coyote. At least the shelter worker didn't mistake her for a fox, unlike most people.

HTTrainer said...

It was 11 years old, so definitely a senior or veteran.
Wasn't there another case of misidentification in Canada sometime back where a lab that was mistaken for a pitbbull? Wasn't this identification was made solely on the decisions of a poorly trained animal control person?
I seem to remember that it took 2 years for the city council to finally release the dog.

Bartimaeus said...

I used to think that it would be very difficult to catch a coyote as well, until my neighbor, who is not the sharpest tack in the box, showed up at my door one evening with a "pup" that turned out to be a very sick and weak coyote. She put it in the car with her granddaughter and drove 1/2 hour home with it curled up on the seat. She was lucky the coyote (and it was definitely a coyote) was so weak that it did not bite anyone. Just a weird, probably once in a lifetime situation, but it makes a good story.
We put a muzzle on it and checked it out, and then decided to euthanize it after confirming that it was, indeed a coyote and consulting with another neighbor who is a game and fish officer.

The Dog House said...

Regardless, this animal looks nothing like a coyote.

Secondly, assuming said animal WAS a coyote, the easy capture suggests at the very least illness.

And their response was to release it in a parking lot?

So many things wrong with this story it makes one's head spin.

HTTrainer said...

It appears that the Frankfort Humane Society aren't the first ones to be fooled from 2007:

PBurns said...

Funny as hell, whether true or not ;)