No-kill shelters, unadoptable dogs, and a ‘dirty little secret’

Hitch came to the Animal Orphanage in Voorhees like so many other : as a stray in need of a home.

A young, energetic border-collie mix, “he could run and jump like nobody's business,” said , former president of the shelter's board of directors.

He didn't adjust well to confinement.

In February, Hitch lashed out and bit the shelter's kennel manager, breaking her thumb and puncturing her hand and breasts. It wasn't the first incident of aggression – Hitch had lunged at other shelter workers, Compton said – and the board decided he needed to be put down, along with a pit bull that had bitten three staffers.

But the shelter director – the kennel manager's boss – refused to euthanize the and kept them up for adoption, according to Compton and former board members.

So the board fired the director, drawing a protest from volunteers and a backlash that spurred all but one board member to resign in March, citing concerns over safety and a growing number of dogs at the shelter.

The fired director was reinstated under a new board, which has addressed past problems and is moving the shelter forward with new procedures, according to its president.

Hitch, meanwhile, was transferred to a New York rescue group and released to a woman who was told of his history but who wanted to foster and adopt him.

The arrangement, however, was short-lived. Hitch was put down after another biting incident, said Loren Cauley, co-founder of the group that arranged his rescue, Rebound Hounds.

“He could not be safely adopted,” she said.

Such decisions are regularly made

… Continue reading here.
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