A demand letter from John Bell, attorney for the Ohio SPCA, has been sent to the Adams County Commissioners regarding inhumane administration of EBI and the failure to provide veterinary care to sick and injured animals. In addition to a visit to the Adams County Dog Pound by two Ohio SPCA representatives, statements and photographs were gathered. The county commissioners have until September 30, 2012 to respond to the demands. Along with the immediate demands, a 13 item records request was issued.
The photographs along with details of our investigation will be released IF the county commissioners do NOT cooperate. It is our goal to work with county officials so that doors are not closed to volunteers or rescues. Sensationalism and heroism have NOT been trademarks of our work over the past decade. Behind the scenes we are often able to put fires out, but when an explosion is inevitable, we let the public know. The ultimate goal is reform – to bring humane treatment and proactive procedures to Ohio’s county dog shelters.
Excerpt from Letter:
1. DEMAND TO CEASE AND DESIST
This is a demand, which our client is prepared to enforce through legal process, that the Dog Warden immediately and until further notice:
1. Cease and Desist from euthanizing or destroying any animal by any method other than Euthanasia By Injection (E.B.I.) with a properly trained veterinarian or veterinary technician;
2. Make any and all necessary arrangements for timely and proper veterinary care for all animals in the custody of the Dog Warden that appear to be injured or ill, and provide our office with documentation of such care;
2. PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST
This is also a request, pursuant to Ohio Revised Code (O.R.C.) Section 149.43(B), for the following information regarding the Adams County Dog Warden, 11260 State Route 41, West Union, Ohio 45693, hereinafter referred to as “the Dog Warden.” Continued on three following pages with enclosures as described
Ohio SPCA Wins Lawsuit Regarding Shooting and Gassing!
Since winning the lawsuit, The Ohio SPCA has had to deal with numerous issues regarding injured dogs left to suffer and dogs fighting as a result of over crowded kennals.
The gas chamber was removed from the Adams County Pound.
The Ohio SPCA is proud to announce the result of a lawsuit which its
predecessor, the Ohio Humane Education Association, filed against the Board of Commissions of Adams County, Ohio and the Adams County, Ohio Dog Warden. In a judgment agreed upon by the Board of Commissioners and the Dog Warden and entered by the Court, Adams County agreed to the following:
1) Shooting dogs as a routine method of euthanasia, or on the basis that
they have cancer, parvo and/or mange, violates Ohio. Adams County agreed to refrain from engaging in such conduct in the future.
2) Using carbon monoxide gas, even in a commercially-manufactured gas
chamber, to euthanize puppies under 16 weeks of age, dogs with respiratory ailments, and elderly dogs violates Ohio law. Adams County agreed to refrain from gassing any more such dogs.
3) Lack of signs identifying, and negligible open hours at a County dog
pound interfere with the rights of citizens to claim their pets or other
animals and violates Ohio law. Adams County agreed to post conspicuous
signs identifying the pound and to expand the open hours there.
4) Adams County also agreed to institute new procedures at the pound to
ensure that dogs are kept for a minimum of 72 hours before they are
euthanized, as generally required by Ohio law. This represents a
substantial victory for the dogs of Adams County and, indeed, throughout
For Immediate Release
August 30, 2003
Ohio Humane Education Association(aka OHIO SPCA) Files Suit to Halt
Unlawful Dog Killings in Adams County
Columbus, Ohio – A pet dog, killed by Adams County Dog Warden Gary Jordan, within one day after being seized from its family’s yard, is one of the many animals on whose behalf the Ohio Humane Education Association (OHEA) is filing suit against the Adams County Commissioners and the dog warden. The suit states that Jordan has repeatedly failed to comply with Ohio law requiring dogs to be held for at least 72 hours before they are destroyed – and that county commissioners have failed to compel the dog warden’s compliance with that law. Also noted in the suit is Jordan’s practice of shooting dogs, which OHEA alleges violates Ohio law requiring humane euthanization methods that immediately and painlessly render the dog initially unconscious. The suit further notes OHEA’s repeated offers, since 2002, to assist Adams County in ensuring compliance with Ohio law. “The bottom line,” says Teresa Turner, OHEA Director, “is that despite all our efforts, we believe dogs in Adams County are still being treated terribly. We felt we had no choice but to take legal action.” If the Fourth District Court of Appeals finds in favor of OHEA, the pound could be required to, among other things, stop shooting and gassing dogs and to hold dogs for the required time before killing them. Turner says that a finding in favor of OHEA would represent “a real victory for the animals-for those who cannot help themselves.”
Shooting and Gassing in Adams County
The following statistics were gathered from available records obtained from an Adams County resident. When OHEA requested the information, we were denied. However, our attorney has since then received requested records.
**These are approximate numbers as some records were missing**
In 2001, 803 dogs were impounded, 36 were reclaimed by their owners and only 3 were adopted or sold. Records show that 75 dogs were shot on site and that 949 dogs were gassed. The question of where the additional 260 gassed dogs came from has not been answered. In dog warden Gary Jordan’s hand written records, on March 19, 2002 eleven dogs were shot in an old barn on private property. He had written that these dogs were wild and mean, although somehow they stayed in the barn while being killed.
On April 12, 2002, two county coordinators from OHEA went to the pound to speak with Mr. Jordan and witness the conditions of the building. Not only did Mr. Jordan deny them entrance into the pound but he also refused to speak with them. The smell of death and dog waste was overwhelming even from outside the pound. This dumpster is located in Adams County. We’re supposed to be a civilized society and yet we dump companion animals like trash. This is the new home found by most pets discarded at shelter doors and on streets by irresponsible and uncaring people.
There are no posted hours for the dog pound.
However, there is a sign posted,
“Authorized Personnel Only”