Michigan TV Helps Animals, You Can Too

by Mary Haight on January 12, 2009

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I was checking out a story on Montcalm Michigan’s Animal Care and Control(ACC) regarding the cruel and, I’m hoping, unusual practice of selling homeless pets to research facilities as a way to defray costs, when breaking news came across the feed.  WOOD NBC 8, the station responsible for bringing this problem to light, reported that a new director, Patty Lentz,  has been appointed to Montcalm’s ACC. Lentz announced that not only will methods of “euthanasia”  change to the more humane practice of lethal injection(less stressful to the animal), but a new Board being seated in January stated they are willing to “look at” severing the relationship with research facilities.  The Board has been signing 5-year contracts, reportedly to avoid pressures of public opinion.  The contract is up this year.

Since Lentz acknowledged the widespread sentiment against selling pets for research purposes, and this change is not yet a sure thing, here is information to take further action should you wish to add your voice to help protect the voiceless.  If you scroll a little past half-way down the page, you will find contact names, numbers, and emails. Local animal welfare groups ask people to please email today, January 12.

Hmmm, I wonder how widespread this practice is or may become given the budget slashing required by city’s increasingly empty coffers.

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James Borgelt
James Borgelt

As President of the Chicago Animal Shelter Alliance (CASA), and in my years associated with the shelter world, I am usually reluctant to immediately demand the passage of new laws for each and every problem in the companion animal world, preferring education, and a reliance on individual responsibility, whenever possible. That said, in my personal opinion, ALL jurisdictions where tax-supported animal care and control facilities are operated should examine, and if necessary amend, their enabling legislation to ensure that no animals are ever sold for research purposes. Selling or transferring unfortunate, abandoned pets "flies in the face" of the mission these facilities are charged with performing.

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