Resident Objects to Shooting of Dog

By: Lindsey Brown Email
By: Lindsey Brown Email

A resident of the Lauderdale community says she's upset about the shooting of a stray dog by Animal Control.

Officials with Lauderdale County's Animal Control say they are just doing their job, trying to enforce a county-wide dog ordinance.

The shooting of the dog happened at a garbage dumpster site in Lauderdale, which has become a hang out for stray animals and also pets with collars who live nearby.

"We have to clean the dumpster sites up," said Animal Control director Dewayne Sosebee.

And in this case, Sosebee says catching and removing the animals has become necessary. But when one dog couldn't be caught Tuesday, he had to euthanize it in the field, which has at least one local resident extremely angry.

"They have no right to shoot these dogs brains out, that are not viciously attacking anyone," said Donna Kay Hill Cook, who lives nearby.

But Sosebee says it's his job. Field euthanasia, he says, is only a last resort and something he hates to do. But he says the county can't allow the animals to roam the area creating liability concerns. Typically, Sosebee said he tries to catch the animals by hand. Next he'll use traps. But none of that worked Tuesday.

"We couldn't catch her. She has been here for a while and has had several litters here," said Sosebee. "She has been causing problems."

The dumpster sites are located all over the county. But this particular site is in the district overseen by supervisor Wayman Newell. He said he supports animal control, noting the liability and filth.

"You've got fleas, nastiness. It is unsanitary," said Newell. "When people dump food and it's not eat up, you get flies that can cause a lot of disease with it."

One of the biggest problems is that people, out of the kindness of their hearts, bring dog food for the stray animals but Sosebee says it only creates a bigger problem.

In fact, Friday evening, several men put out some canned dog food, which the strays immediately ran to eat. Sosebee asked the men not to bring it in the future.

"We just can't let them continue to multiply," said Sosebee.

"They need to set up cameras and catch people who are doing it," Cook said, referring to people who dump animals there.

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