I stopped by Dallas Animal Services over on Westmoreland Road this afternoon to check out the facilities in anticipation of the long-awaited and long-delayed Humane Society of the United States report about practices and conditions at the shelter. You may have heard of some of the problems as of late, which were detailed during yesterday's Quality of Life Committee meeting over at City Hall -- specifically, the part where a trapped cat was left to die in a wall, and oh yeah, a dog with shattered legs was dragged by an animal control officer. Former shelter manager Tyrone McGill was indicted at the end of the summer on charges of felony animal cruelty. So, yeah, that HSUS report might be of some help.
In the interim, Lt. Scott Walton of the Dallas Police Department is taking over as shelter manager -- in fact, he volunteered for the position -- and is getting positive reviews from the animal shelter commission and former commission chairman Jonnie England, who told me Lt. Walton is the first shelter manager she's ever heard use the term "compassion" when it comes to animal services. Walton's such a fan of the word, in fact, that he had it emblazoned on green rubber wristbands that were handed out to DAS staff this morning in a special meeting.
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This afternoon Walton told me he was hard at work on the DAS Facebook page, which features photos of their "very special pets," meaning those who've been in DAS custody the longest and are at highest risk for euthanasia. It was all I could do during my tour not to take home a couple of kittens to add to my existing brood. But I'm told two cats are the maximum allowed for a single lady before it gets weird, and Whiskey and Sake are already spoiled to death. However, I'm more than willing to be convinced otherwise invite your arguments for or against in the comments.