The Pryor Times

Crimes and courts

June 1, 2014

Dog dumpers wave at shelter camera

PRYOR, OK — Earlier this month, 10 puppies were dumped at Pryor’s Rockin' G Animal Shelter.

“The puppies were full of worms, covered with fleas and ticks and generally not in good health,” said Kathy LaValley, a spokesperson for Rockin’ G Animal Shelter. “A man and woman drove onto the shelter grounds just after noon and put 10 puppies out in the parking lot then left with the puppies chasing after them.”

LaValley said the image of the dumpers was caught on the facility surveillance cameras, and the male driver could be seen smiling and waving at the camera as he drove away. LaValley posted the surveillance image on the shelter's Facebook page, and within 24 hours the suspects were named. Now, law enforcement has the ability to ticket the offenders.

“We wanted to find them, not only because dumping is illegal and should not be tolerated, but there is a mama dog, most likely, still at their house full of worms and covered with fleas and ticks,” said LaValley.

LaValley said there are no statics available on the number of dogs dumped on roadsides each year, because most are killed by passing cars, sickness or other animals.

“But they say there are five to 10 dogs dumped for every one dog surrendered to a shelter. There is no reason to dump animals. People think when they dump their pets someone will come along and give them a nice home,” said LaValley. “That's not usually the case. We have to put a lot of them down because we don't find them in time to save them. They usually die of mange or dehydration and liver failure, they are often emaciated, covered in fleas, ticks and worms. They are often hit by passing cars or eaten by large animals.”

LaValley said Rockin' G wishes people would call if they found themselves in pet situation they can't afford.

“We can't help people if we don't know they need help. We can't take in everyone's pets, we can't afford that. But we have a lot of resources and know of other options in other towns. We will bend over backwards to get animals adopted and get your pets spayed or neutered. There are other options besides a municipal shelter,” said LaValley.

LaValley said the Claremore Animal Shelter and Ark Animal Hospital offer a low-income/ low-cost spay/neuter program. Any household with an income under $40,000 can get their pet spayed or neutered, dewormed and vaccinated for rabies for $45 for dogs and $35 for cats. The program requires income verification.

If a pet owner can afford to spay or neuter, and chooses not to, LaValley says “shame on them.”

“If you can afford to, do it. If not, call us,” she said. “And really shame on Pryor for not having spay/neuter laws. Most progressive municipalities do and there is no reason for us not to attach a spay/neuter clause on our existing pet ordinance. If we had a law in place, we could then apply for grant funding to help people that can't afford to spay/neuter their pets.”

The puppies have been cleaned up and are looking much healthier, said LaValley. The couple, living in the Langley/Spavinaw area could now be ticketed.

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Crimes and courts