July 10, 2008

Animal Control Ordinance Will Now Include Adoption Option

A recent change in the city’s animal control ordinance will now allow unclaimed animals an opportunity for adoption.

The Memphis City Council agreed July 2nd to enter an agreement with the Adair County Humane Society. Animals impounded by the city that go unclaimed for seven business days will have the opportunity to be transported to the humane society’s shelter in Kirksville.

A local animal rescue group had been pushing for the ordinance change. Members of the group have volunteered to transport the animals to the shelter.

The council agreed to change the regulations to allow a 48-hour window for volunteers to transport the animals to the shelter. Currently the city has a licensed dog pound, which can not be operated as a shelter, meaning the city is not legally capable of allowing animals to be adopted. If the impounded dogs are not transported by the volunteer group, the animal will still be subject to euthanization. The humane society may also refuse transfer of animals that are deemed un-adoptable.

The city agreed to pay $15 per animal that is accepted by the humane society, a fee that represents a significantly lower cost than euthanization.

Prior to the rule change, animals that were not claimed by an owner within seven business days were scheduled for euthanization.

Since the city constructed the dog pound last year, only one dog has been euthanized by the city, and it was deemed a vicious animal after attacking a city police officer.

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