Fischer/LMAS Make It More Difficult To Adopt

Have you read this back-n-forth between No Kill Louisville and the Louisville Metro Animal Services people? It’s absurd.

But since we’re on the topic of LMAS not informing the public of all the animals available for adoption – and not even bothering to promote the animals located at the Manslick killing facility – we’re going to do something better than write about it.

Take a look at these emails that detail the lengths Justin Scally and crew have gone to in order to make sure it’s impossible to adopt an animal. He obfuscates, makes things up and all of Greg Fischer’s inner circle are involved in the mess. That includes people like David Yates and Marty Meyer, who are merely pretending to give a flip so they can report back to Greg (hi, we have a ton of your emails – should be more careful when using a government account).

Here you go:

From: karen dickson
Sent: Wednesday, February 29, 2012 12:58 AM
To: Scally, Justin L; Greg Fischer_(Mayor); Downard, Kelly; Yates, David
Subject: Adoptions at Manslick Road

Dear Mr. Scally, Mr. Downard, Mr. Yates and Mayor Fischer,

I found Mr. Scally’s response to my question about closing the Manslick Road shelter to adoptions confusing and I would ask that each of you question why a newly improved, newly sanitized, aesthetically improved shelter is not open to adoptions, particularly if doing so will save many animals lives. I maintain that asking people that come to the Manslick Road shelter to adopt, to drive across town to do so, is poor customer service. I have been told by Margaret Brosko that Manslick Road is closed to adoptions because the public wants to be able to adopt immediately when they see an animal they like. However, Manslick Road has had years of adoptions rates that aren’t significantly different from current Animal House rates. For instance, the overall adoption rate in 2010 (at Manslick Road) was 16% (as a percentage of intake) and the overall rate for 2011 at Animal House was 19% (again, as a percentage of intake). This supports the argument that people are content to wait two days between choosing and picking up their animals at Manslick Road. I have copied Mr. Scally’s entire response below:

***This is Justin Scally – You’re correct that many things have been done but nevertheless, there is still plenty of work to do at LMAS. I think the issue isn’t that we don’t adopt out of Manslick but simply that most of those animals haven’t …been altered yet, etc. The policy is to advise citizens that we will be happy to walk them through to look at the pets in case they find one of interest at Manslick and we provide the visitor with information on how to get to the Newburg Road location where they are already ‘worked-up’ so to speak. As you know, an adoption of a pet requires a lifelong committment so it’s essential that we set new potential adopters up for success regardless of whether they come to Newburg, Manslick or any other location for their new family companion.***

Frankly, I find this response illogical and random. Please pay close attention to the sentence in bold print. Mr. Scally, you state that the issue isn’t that adoptions are not completed at Manslick Road, but you refer to the “work up” of these animals as the stumbling block of their adoption. Is this because, as Ms. Brosko stated, that people want an animal they can immediately adopt? If so, that argument has already been shown to be false. You then state that staff are happy to let citizens walk through Manslick, (in case they find one of interest) but staff then tells them how to get to Newburg Road where the animals are already worked up. Therefore, you are confirming that Manslick Road is closed to adoptions. It appears that no matter what, no one is able to choose and adopt an animal from Manslick, based on your answers. In your last sentence you state the “adoption of a pet requires a lifelong committment so it’s essential that we set new potential adopters up for success regardless of whether they come to Newburg, Manslick or any other location for their new family companion.” Regarding this statement, I fail to see how the reproductive status of the animal has any bearing on the success or failure of an adoption, as I am assuming this is what you were referring to based on the two previous sentences.

Wanna read the rest of these emails and see some hard evidence that Greg Fischer’s kept boy has made it more difficult to adopt animals in Louisville? Check it all out after the jump…

I sincerely hope there is a serious discussion in the near future about opening up Manslick to adoptions as an integral part of lifesaving. It makes absolutely no sense to use this facility as a warehouse and distribution center and not give those animals, (the majority of the animals at LMAS), the greatest chance of getting out alive. It is wrong that the these animals are not marketed in any way, are not on Petfinder, and are sitting there awaiting their judgment. Some will go to rescue, some to Animal House, a few will be returned to their owners and the rest will be euthanized. Out of the 200 or so dogs at Manslick Road and Animal House, as of yesterday, there were only 23 on Petfinder. The day before that, only 14 were on Petfinder. If the general public were aware of the lack of marketing of these animals, they would be understandably outraged. I know that the goal is to drive all traffic to Animal House, but that decision is unnecessarily killing animals that have no hope of ever being seen by the public. While animals are waiting for spots to open up at Animal House (when a dog/cat is adopted) others at Manslick are euthanized for time and space. Why not have the public adopt them where they are, without waiting for room at Animal House? It is simple logistics. If you have two viable places for adoptions, why not use both and double the amount of adoptions instead of killing your inventory?

The public will understand if the Manslick Road facility is not in the best condition. What they want, and will demand, is that EVERY animal has the best chance of adoption as it possibly can. The public will overlook the ragged facade, but they will not overlook unnecessary death when it is made public, particularly when there is an alternative. If the goal is truly to save all adoptable animals, then Manslick Road must be an open adoption center with excellent customer service.

Sincerely,

Karen Dickson

And the response from Scally:

From: Justin.Scally
To: karen dickson
CC: Greg Fischer; Kelly Downard; David Yates; Sadiqa Reynolds; Margaret Brosko; Donald Robinson
Subject: RE: Adoptions at Manslick Road
Date: Wed, 29 Feb 2012 16:57:33 +0000

Ms. Dickson,

Thanks for writing to us. We all agree that it is essential and absolutely imperative that we do everything we can to help save lives. Currently, animals that are entered into our Chameleon database are automatically listed and uploaded via a server to Pet-Harbor. Furthermore, the Petfinder data entry is predominantly a volunteer run initiative due to a lack of available staffing resources at LMAS at this time. Therefore, I have asked that we check into the possibility of getting a similar interface between Petfinder and Chameleon like we already have for Pet-Harbor. I’m not sure if this will be a viable option – but we’re checking.

Your interpretation of the policy regarding adoptions at Manslick however is not accurate. As an example, a citizen came into Manslick the other day to redeem her pet and upon pulling up the Chameleon records, the dog already had a person’s name as a ‘Possible Adopter’ in case an owner didn’t come to redeem him/her. This wouldn’t have happened if we weren’t giving citizens the opportunity to look at animals that could be adopted at Manslick. On the flip side however, many of the animals at Manslick are still on ‘stray-hold’ meaning we cannot legally alter a pet until his/her hold is up so this will play into a pet’s release time. Nevertheless, we will take additional steps to ensure visitors know that pets at Manslick are animals that could potentially be adopted.

Thanks again,

Justin L. Scally
Director of Animal Services
Louisville Metro Government
justin.scally@louisvilleky.gov

Karen’s response:

From: karen dickson
To: justin scally
CC: greg fischer; kelly downard; david yates; sadiqa reynolds; margaret brosko; donald robinson
Subject: RE: Adoptions at Manslick Road
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2012 02:34:12 +0000

Dear Mr. Scally, Mr. Downard, Mr. Yates and Mayor Fischer,

Thank you Mr. Scally for your reply. I am sorry if I haven’t been clear in what I am requesting, as it seems there is a communication barrier and I take full responsibility for perhaps not being articulate enough.

My definition of utilizing the Manslick Road shelter as an adoption center would not require potential adopters to set foot in Animal House, ever. All steps of the adoption process, from the time an individual chooses a pet (at Manslick), does the paperwork, waits for the animal to be altered, until the adopter comes to pick up the pet, would take place at Manslick Road. At no time would an adopter be required to complete the adoption at Animal House and Manslick Road would be promoted as an adoption facility.

The examples you provided of adoptions taking place at Manslick Road were not adoptions. I have never asserted that individuals are not being allowed to look at animals at Manslick, just that they are not allowed to adopt animals from the Manslick Road facility. By that, I mean that the process is not initiated or finalized there. Your first example was of someone that came to look for their pet that was lost or impounded. He/she found an animal that had “possible adopt” on the memo. The potential adopter on the memo could have been a member of the public, an employee, a former foster of that animal, someone that turned it into the shelter or any number of other scenarios. I’m sorry, but your example does not prove that adoptions are taking place at Manslick, only that people are given the opportunity to look for their lost animals (as required by law).

The example of animals on a stray/wait hold are irrelevant to our discussion of adoptions at Manslick. When Manslick Road was open to adoptions in the past, we would advise adopters that an animal was on stray/wait hold but encourage them to fill out an application and they were then notified when the animal became available. At that point, they could fill out an adoption application and the animal would be spayed/neutered. A stray/wait hold is not a legitimate reason to hinder a potential adoption.

Finally, I am glad you mentioned Petfinder. Years ago there was an attempt to tie it in directly to Chameleon, but for reasons I cannot remember, it was unsuccessful. The bigger question for me is why the imput of animals into Petfinder is strictly a volunteer initiative. With the Petfinder site the only potential lifeline of the lucky animals that are listed, why is something this important not a staff responsibility? The fact that it is left for volunteers to do indicates it is not a high priority for you and management. Also, as of 2-20-12, there were 240 dogs in foster and the shelter, and 266 cats. At that time there were 14 dogs on Petfinder and 50 cats. Out of 506 animals, only 64, or 12.6% of all animals in the shelter, were listed on this lifesaving site.

As Manslick has recently undergone improvements in functionality and appearance, I think it is past time to get serious about saving the majority of animals that come into LMAS, and not just the lucky ones that find themselves at Animal House or find places at a rescue. I’m sure a poll of taxpayers would support my view that Manslick Road should be opened up to adoptions (adoptions that are initiated and completed there) immediately.

Thank you for your time,

Karen Dickson

We have thousands more emails where that came from.

Just in case you want to take a look at it? The newest LMAS volunteer manual states in the Programs section that the Manslick kill facility doesn’t adopt:

One of LMAS’ most popular programs is our adoption program. The Animal House is our showcase for our adoptable animals. Our Manslick Rd. location does not adopt animals. It is open only for licensing, lost identification, and owner/stray surrenders. All of our cats and dogs are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, licensed and microchipped before going home. We also place the other animals (rabbits, cows, goats, horses, gerbils, chickens, etc.) that are sent our way as well.

You may click here (Warning: PDF Link) to download a copy of the manual for yourself.

5 thoughts on “Fischer/LMAS Make It More Difficult To Adopt

  1. I say mail every email, every post, every statistic of senseless killing of adoptable pets and news story about LMAS and with cover letter stating the facts mail it to the Compassionate Action Network International Institution in Seattle. Tell them their bogus award/designation is unwarrented and take it back. We have a city filled with cowardly and selfish leaders who do absolutely nothing unless its for their own gain. Jim King and every other Metro Council memebr is a joke and all should booted off Shanklin’s couch. The influential few who are tip-toeing away from Fischy should grow a pair and condfront him on this and the million other issues. To the mainstream press…Gabe..”the troubleshooter” you are a joke. Hey folks at 32 you are not the air how about doing investigative journalism. Jake’s done your job for you! We are responsible for not putting an end to this mess.

  2. Amazing how a large, supposedly vital department of Metro Louisville government (LMAS), within a city well-known & indeed nationally recognized for its “compassion” , could be so oblivious to its own mission. Or is its mission actually just to provided paying jobs for certain citizens while ridding the city of loose animals? –Just a fancy big ol’ “pest control” company?

    Is there an analogy lurking in LMAS’ business model of having a spiffy east-end “front” while hiding their ugly warehouse across town?
    Or in making things geophically difficult for much of their customer base?
    They certainly have silenced the majority of those who should be their most rabid critics… I don’t understand how most of the local “activists” are TERRIFIED of criticizing LMAS or its administrators – & delete comments from. or chastise, those who dare to.

    –So grateful that there are a few brave individuals who defiantly speak the truth.–

  3. What a complete disaster!!

    LMAS needs to find someone with the most basic organizational skills so that the Manslick Road location can start adopting out animals.

    It really isn’t rocket science!

  4. Wow, I thought Scally was only acting ignorant and being rude to me. Who would have guessed that he was such a screw up in so many areas…in a wierd way I feel beter now. I think.

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