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home : opinion : columns April 29, 2016

6/22/2014 6:00:00 AM
Guest Column: Tale of ill health fell on deaf ears at animal shelter
David Zenovitch
Kingman resident

I was hospitalized after having a stroke on Memorial Day. After spending 10 days in KRMC, I learned that my and my son's dogs were missing. My son lives in Camp Verde and had brought his dog while he had been visiting me, leaving it at my home when he had returned to work several days before.

My roommate thought my son took both dogs to Camp Verde, as was common, and thought nothing more of it until I asked about them and said that was not the case.

After finding them at the pound by phone, I explained I could not leave KRMC to get them until I was discharged, which would be a few days later.

That's when I found out I was to be charged over $430 to get them out, while getting a bum's rush from a VERY rude and arrogant person. The assistant manager showed no compassion or understanding to my new-found handicap or predicament. I did not have that much money, so I had to leave our dogs there for an additional 5 days while I disputed the bill, but they only came down to $285, still charging boarding with out a break. Wow.

The manager was great, though she was bound by our sheriff's office's unbending conviction that fines make bad pet owners better, even when the situation is out of their control.

And then came even more bewildering actions. While removing my dogs from the pen, they were pulled by a leash with a slipknot with so much force one dog's larynx was crushed and the other's was bruised. My dog won't eat or drink and coughs up bile every few minutes.


I'm broke and can't work, but now I'll pay for a vet too. The county owes me an apology and a refund for their thoughtless employees and tough luck attitude. And we will now reward them with new buildings costing how many millions?

Maybe they can get some cheap collars for the dogs, and for that assistant manager a muzzle and some classes on how county employees should work with the public with kindness and consideration.

I'm a biker, or was, and even roughest of us will be polite when it's called for.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014
Article comment by: Kingman Dweller

I have rescued two dogs from the animal shelter downtown, and I must say that both times my experiences have been nothing but pleasant. The staff was very friendly and very helpful. I have brought the dogs back for a visit, so the staff could see their growth and they were pleasant. I try to remember that everyone can and will have bad days. That doesn't mean that they are terrible people as some would suggest on this page.

Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014
Article comment by: Scooby Do

Your roommate, your son and yourself all failed to make sure these dogs were properly being cared for and it's the shelter's fault? Maybe you got the "bum's rush" because the staff have heard it all about dogs on the loose.

I don't think owning a dog should have anything to do with income but this situation was caused by you and your family, not the shelter. The responsibility is yours. I am concerned if your claim is true that the dogs were injured while in the care of the shelter.

Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014
Article comment by: em lee

Rick O'shea

That's really rude of you. Just because people are low income, that does not mean they should not have dogs. My dogs make my life better. They enrich my life. Their love and companionship is a true blessing from Yahovah. They are well fed and very much loved. They are vaccinated and I am knowledgeable in treating common ailments in my pets. Yes a sick animal who needs vet care would be a hardship, but that's because the greed of vets. They charge so much and basically bank on emotional blackmail to make money Only 2 exceptions I can think of in Kingman. Dr Anderson at manzanita and low cost spay and neuter. Lcsn does do vet care for about 1/3 of what you would pay elsewhere. They are not just for spay and neuter. It's pretty sad that you think poor people should not have one of the greatest joys in life that comes with having a pet. Loneliness and depression is a terrible thing.And I really can't stand our animal control system in Kingman. If this man had not gotten his dogs, and nobody adopted them, they would be killed and thrown in the landfill. Perfectly healthy and WANTED dogs held hostage for ransom and killed when the ransom can't be paid. That's wrong. In those cases there should be an alternative. ie volunteering at shelter or other payment plans.

Posted: Monday, June 23, 2014
Article comment by: small comfort .....

Well, they got away with what they have done to U.S. citizens. Maybe the house can be brought down on the basis of what they have done to dogs.

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Roy Leggett

Call WACOG and get the number for legal services. It's free legal advice. Maybe a law suit will make them treat people better. As to the statement that if you can not pay the bill then you should not have a dog. We have a poodle and sometimes I enjoy her company more than I would some people. Dogs are therapeutic and can help in your recovery. Good luck.

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Linda Kapica

This shelter should be closed down. It is not a shelter when they abuse the animals.

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Sheeesh--- And By Gorra

@ Rick O'Shea - Why do you minimize the bad experience this man and dogs had with animal control by trying to make it look as though it is the man's fault? FIRST remedy the employees' bad attitudes and the inflexible policies - which is the bigger problem - THEN, if you must, worry about why the man has a dog.

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: RE: Rick O'Shea

Did it ever occur to you that money hasn't always been so tight for this man?

And even if money is tight, an animal for companionship and maybe home security is priceless!

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Deacon Blues

I agree completely with you David Zenovitch, I have lived in Kingman most of my 53 years and I have learned the hard way that the city and county animal control staff are some of the rudest and most UN-professional people I have ever dealt with. I for ONE am NOT AT ALL sorry to see our current Sheriff leaving, he has neglected the jail, civil and animal control division problems for far too long.

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Share The Blame

What a crummy story on so many levels: is there no room for compassion for a guy who had a stroke? Doesn't this man have any friends? Would this happen to a K-9 Officer?

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Rick O'Shea

Sorry to hear of the dogs predicament and I hope they recover but one has to ask, if money is so tight, why do you own dogs in the first place?

Posted: Sunday, June 22, 2014
Article comment by: Linda Varon

I am saddened to read of the two dogs that were treated so badly by animal control. A famous man once said, " The compassion of a country can best be judged by how its animals are treated"..Shame, shame

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