The Mayor of a city whose animal shelter was euthanising dogs by gunshot has called the cruel action a ‘mistake’.
It was confirmed earlier in the week that the shelter in the city of Bristow, Oklahoma, had put down three dogs, including a pit bull, by using bullets.
State law dictates that animals be euthanised humanely, but according to FOX 23 falls short of defining what exactly is classed as humane.
Public outrage led to an online petition being created to demand that euthanasia only be carried out by a trained vet, and that the shelter be opened to the public. The petition has so far gained over 11,000 signatures.
Now the Mayor of Bristow has spoken to Mashable to condemn the cruel practice.
Mayor Leonard Washington said:
We probably should have handled this with the vets involved, you know, instead of taking actions the way we had done.
That’s why I’ve suspended all euthanizations as of right now, so we can make sure that we do the process the way it’s supposed to be.
We’re trying to make sure we don’t have an overabundance of dogs in our dog pound because we can only have ten at one time, so that’s a problem.
Washington added that ‘mistakes were made’, but he is now actively trying to correct them.
Residents spoke to Mashable about the gunshots being stopped, but also about their dismay at learning the city’s animal control officer wasn’t even trained how to properly put down animals.
Beth Roberts said:
I’m very pleased with the halt of euthanasias until further notice, but after finding out that the animal control officer has not been to euthanasia [training] and has not been certified to do it, I don’t feel comfortable with him doing any of them. They need to be referred to a licensed veterinarian.