The myriad issues with the Dallas Animal Services have been well chronicled, especially in our January cover story on the shelter, which described the conflicting mindsets there thusly: "The old dog catcher mentality of 'catch, cage, kill,' which focuses on rounding up strays, keeping them a short time and euthanizing them quickly, and a more animal welfare-influenced philosophy that focuses on humane treatment, adoption and live release."
It's an issue former Dallas police chief-turned-mayoral candidate David Kunkle has decided to weigh in on: Several Friends of Unfair Park direct our attention to a "white paper" posted to his site, sans fanfare, in which Kunkle says he's pored over the Humane Society of the United States auditors' scathing report release last year and supports its many recommendations. And not only that, but Kunkle wants to see it become a no-kill shelter if and when it gets its act together. Says the item, it's both personal and pragmatic, far as Kunkle's concerned:
In Fiscal Year 2009-2010, it's estimated that only 10% of owned animals were registered. Because the City is not enforcing its own rules, Dallas is losing hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in animal permit fees. There were also tens of thousands of 3-1-1 calls related to Animal Services, which ultimately cost the taxpayers money. These situations can be improved with enforcement. The Animal Shelter Commission has outlined ways Dallas can potentially generate revenue, while also implementing a successful spay/neuter program.
"Proven steps like encouraging more adoption from the shelter, better use of web and social networking sites, partnering with the area's pet rescue and foster groups, providing free or lower-cost spay and neuter programs, and preventing more pets from ending up in shelters in the first place will go along way in accomplishing our goal of becoming a No-Kill City."
Coincidentally, on Thursday Animal Shelter Commission members will gather at the downtown library to meet-n-greet the leading contenders for the Animal Shelter Division Manager's gig.