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Thumbs up: Cooperation benefits shelter, rescue group

May. 21, 2013 @ 10:45 PM

Better, direct communication might ease some of the tensions related to the Huntington-Cabell-Wayne Animal Control Shelter.

That's the hope, anyway, after the shelter's board and a local organization involved in rescuing animals aired their respective concerns at a board meeting last week. On the one hand, board members were unhappy that representatives of One by One Animal Advocates have publicly criticized the shelter's operations, especially at a time when the shelter has undergone improvements. Members of One by One were upset about remarks made by a board member regarding the organization's motives.

But after the two sides explained their positions, a tentative course has been set that could serve both groups well. Board members and One by One representatives agreed that matters would be helped by establishing a formal protocol regarding notification of euthanization of animals and the shelter's spay and neuter fees when rescues of animals are involved.

A firm notification policy would give One by One an opportunity to rescue animals scheduled for euthanization either because of space needs or because of sickness or injury. A set fee schedule would let One by One and perhaps other rescue organizations know exactly what costs they faced.

The two sides also discussed how to communicate with each other and work toward solutions if problems arise.

The details aren't worked out yet, but it is expected a proposal will be considered by the board next month. Let's hope the board, One by One and other interested rescue groups can continue moving forward in a constructive way. It's clear that the shelter is not in a position to save every animal, but cooperation by both sides could continue the path toward more rescued animals.

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