Labels: Feeling connected in Sacramento
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Monday, June 28, 2010
This is where the breeders mistake usually ends up. I'd much rather see them in this cage.
Labels: Congress may pass PUPS law
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Saturday, June 26, 2010
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Friday, June 18, 2010
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Another response to my letter. Unfortunately, it's a done deal. They voted today. The shelter issue wasn't even mentioned by anyone interviewed on TV. The animals lose again, but at least they saved the volunteer coordinator position.
Thank you for your email. As you likely know, Sacramento County is facing unprecedented funding shortfalls and the Board of Supervisors must make very difficult decisions about reducing funding to every program we provide, if not eliminating some entirely.
Unfortunately, the Animal Care and Regulation department is facing difficulties this year, primarily due to the debt service that must be paid on the costly new kennel facility off Bradshaw Road. Supervisor MacGlashan was concerned about the cost of this building and the potential for a situation like this years ago, and voted against constructing the facility. It is unfortunate that the County now finds itself in a position in which debt service on a building is eliminating services.
Thank you for contacting Supervisor MacGlashan with your concerns. I wish I had better news for you, but as I said the County is facing very difficult decisions right now. Supervisor MacGlashan’s top priority is to ensure that there is an adequate level of patrol staffing in the Sheriff’s Department. Please understand that the current budget proposal has restored funding for the volunteer services coordinator, so that we may continue to make use of our dedicated volunteers.
Chief of Staff
District 4, Sacramento County
Supervisor Roberta MacGlashan
Thank you for sharing your concerns about possible budget reductions affecting the Department of Animal Care and Regulation.
Please be assured there is no plan to close the County Animal Shelter. Unfortunately, the economic decline in county and state revenues is expected to continue for the next fiscal year so budget cuts to some extent will have to be considered.
Please also understand that further reduction of animal care services is neither desired nor wanted by the Board of Supervisors. This perilous financial situation necessitates finding a way to lessen the department’s dependency on general fund revenues. An alternative business model needs to be developed to secure funding from other sources and/or utilize a regional/consolidated approach maximizing efficiencies among the various jurisdictions with respect to the way animals are licensed and regulated.
I appreciate very much the efforts being made by the volunteers and interested groups about promoting animal registration/licensing along with donations for the department (I saw a flyer at the pet/livestock feed store over the weekend where I purchase food for my dog). There also have been collaborative discussions with municipal officials and the local veterinarian society about how we all can benefit by having a regional plan for animal care across jurisdictional lines and I understand those discussions are on-going.
The expressed desire by the community to save the shelter is evident that there are countless numbers of volunteers and animal supporters who remain committed to helping despite the financial challenges we face.
Thank you again for caring and expressing your support.
Supervisor, Third District
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Here's what I wrote to the County Board of Supervisors about the County Animal Shelter:
More often I speak for the animals through my books and my monthly column for Sacramento’s Inside Publications, Pets and Their People. But I write to you now to beseech you to do everything within your power to keep the doors to the Sacramento County Animal Shelter open and retain the staff needed to operate it. By so doing, you will be saving countless animals’ lives, spare workers their jobs, and keep the community safe from strays, which can transmit disease.
What happens to all these animals if there is no shelter for them to be housed in and cared for when no one else will? It is a potentially disastrous prospect that you and other county officials have not weighed carefully enough but must do so before your final decision on this vital issue.
I adopted quite a few dogs from the old Bradshaw Road facility, an antiquated, depressing lockdown which left much to be desired and at one time even sold pets to research labs to make ends meet. It was a horrifying prospect to think that a loving companion animal could be subjected to endless cruel experiments. One of the dogs I adopted there was a two-year-old basset hound named Bubba Gump. I found my beautiful Bubba in 1997 on his last day before he was scheduled to be destroyed. From that day forward, he enriched my life immeasurably and enjoyed a long and happy life with me to the age of 14, ancient for a basset. Bubba was my closest companion for all those years and inspired me to author theBeanie and Cruiser Mystery Series for dog lovers, which features a basset hound named Cruiser.
Without a county shelter to hold Bubba until I would be fortunate enough to find him, I’d never have been able to adopt this wonderful dog because he would have been needlessly killed and his life cut far too short. Yet, this tragic scenario plays out every day in our community shelters, largely because there is not enough funding provided to educate the public about responsible pet ownership or enough space to house all the unwanted pets that result from that woeful ignorance.
Have you ever observed the euthanasia of a perfectly healthy pet? Perhaps everyone who is making these harsh decisions about our animals and community shelters (including our governor) should be required to spend one day in the shelter’s euthanasia room before taking a vote on the issue. If they did, I suspect that they would not be so quick to axe the budget for the shelter. There are so many others like Bubba at risk now at the beautiful new county shelter. This state-of-the-art shelter should be preserved at all costs. How much better it would have been for Bubba to be housed in a fine, modern shelter like this one. He may not have developed kennel cough, which is rampant (along with other more deadly diseases) in antiquated, poorly managed shelters like the city shelter on Front Street, where I adopted a beautiful basset pup that died from distemper after two miserable weeks.
Will you do what is needed to preserve this model shelter for our community and distinguish my hometown as a compassionate city that values life over basketball stadiums and downtown mall rejuvenation? One that doesn’t needlessly destroy its companion animals? Let Sacramento become a model community that makes the lives of its pets better and supports the people who care for them. Surely, you and the other Sacramento County Supervisors can search your hearts and take the steps to ensure that the needed budget cuts come from other places, like unnecessary positions in your bloated hierarchy, inflated salaries, or programs that do not put the precious lives of people’s pets at risk. I challenge you to look into the trusting eyes of just one of the devoted companion animals currently impounded at the county shelter, through no fault of its own, and ask yourself if you could be the one to inject death into its veins. If not, I hope you will reverse your decision to put thousands of healthy, adoptable animals at the sharp end of that syringe.
Of course, pets can’t vote, so they are easy targets for the chopping block when budgets must be balanced and services cut. But nothing (or no one) should have to die for you to accomplish that. There are not as many citizens who will speak out for these voiceless creatures, but we who care deeply about the welfare of animals can and do vote. I assure you that we will remember at election time who helped the animals…and who did not. Save Our Shelter!
Monday, June 14, 2010
Sunday, June 13, 2010
Labels: Beau takes a bath
Friday, June 11, 2010
I just returned to Sacramento after two weeks at beautiful Lake Tahoe, my favorite place on Earth. Of course, I took Peaches and Beau along with me. It was Beau's first trip to Tahoe with me and probably his first ever, since I doubt his former owner took him anywhere fun. It all seemed new and exciting to him, and he quickly began to expect a car ride to Kiva Beach every morning, just like Peaches does. Kiva is a leash-free beach for dogs, the only one at South Lake Tahoe.
Labels: Beau does Tahoe