Lowndes County Animal Shelter Probed

By: Gabrielle Sarann Email
By: Gabrielle Sarann Email

"I've seen a lot of the animals come in the shelter and not got vet care and sometimes that comes in the form of euthanasia," says Susan Leavens, an animal control officer for Lowndes County.

This led several Lowndes County Animal Shelter employees to file a complaint with the Georgia Department of Agriculture.

It launched an investigation citing the facility for not providing humane care.

And in routine inspections over the last year, several euthanasia violations were written-up.

"It did not matter how you euthanized or what numbers you used, it didn't matter if it was a 30lb dog and you used 6 cc's," says Leavens. "It need to be 60 pound dog."

The Department of Agriculture says the Lowndes County Animal Shelter failed to provide care to an emaciated bulldog picked up in September.

The report says its gums were white and it couldn't stand on its own.

Susan Leavens says she did her best to care for the dog, but it took two days for the director, Linda Patelski, to have the dog euthanized.

"Three or four times that day I'd spoken to her about that particular dog," says Leavens. "On each instance, she was doing something else. The dog was never seen by a vet that day."

Lowndes County Manager Joe Pritchard says, "I don't believe through our investigation, nor through any info we received from the Department of Ag, are able to indicate any malicious intent."

The Department of Agriculture has not fined the Lowndes County Animal Shelter.

Its last inspection was March 15. The shelter is now subject to an additional unannounced inspection.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Animal lover Location: Lake Park on May 22, 2011 at 04:20 PM
    I am so ashamed on how someone can do that to a poor animal... All of these animals can not speak so some one has to be there voice... Come on people its time to WAKE UP and help these animals out.. If that person does not care, love, or have passion for animals then they need to be replace with someone that does.. If the animal does not look good or feels good then its time to take it to the vet.. I am so saddened by how people treat these animals that are in the shelter... Remember we have a voice and they don't !!!!
  • by Angry in Lowndes Location: Valdosta on May 20, 2011 at 07:35 AM
    If I, as a citizen of this county, denied my pet vet care and left it on a floor for three days, unable to stand and defecating blood all over the blankets, I would be fined and in court. How is it that our county employees are above the law and can neglect animals without legal penalty? This isn't just an abuse of animals, it is an abuse of authority.
  • by Jane Location: Valdosta on May 19, 2011 at 07:39 PM
    Abuse of animals is a criminal offense. The Dept of Ag has no jurisdiction in criminal cases. These allegations should be investigated by the police or sheriff.
    • reply
      by Pete on May 24, 2011 at 10:37 AM in reply to Jane
      No, but the Dept of Ag has the responsibility to make sure the place is being run in a proper manner. If they find a crime has been committed, they turn it over to authorities.
  • by Debbie Rumker on May 19, 2011 at 06:46 PM
    Totally UNACCEPTABLE!!!! There are neighboring shelters that offer greater humane care to their animals and with a lot less resources. First priority should be for someone to run the shelter that has the love, compassion, and dedication. This poor baby should never had to suffer while in the hands of, what is suppose to be, humane individuals. And, why is it that our shelter puts pets for adoption on pet finders but it takes them days to post a photo?? And, why is it that other shelter directors are not permitted to visit our shelter and compare notes?? Something to hide!!! There are a lot of questions that need to be answered. I for one, am so ashamed of our shelter. Change is needed and must be demanded!
  • by Tom Location: TLH on May 19, 2011 at 06:38 PM
    Sounds like animals are in charge of the animals.
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