One would expect these reports to come from a third world country but they are from right here in Texas in a small town named Center. One resident put out a cry for help through social networking Sunday after being told by an official that some locals eat stray dogs and the animal control officer takes strays to a holding facility at an unknown location then shoots them to death.
This conversation transpired after a resident reported a Cocker Spaniel that had been tied to a tree during a storm at a residence that has a different dog tied up nearly every other week then started asking questions. The dogs are now presumed by some to have been eaten by the residents of the property or some other awful fate. This official claimed there are no laws against having a dog tied out with no shelter. It was at this point the resident put out a cry for help out of sheer frustration.
The resident wrote, “See this picture ---this is a full blooded Cocker Spaniel tied to a tree with a log chain on Walker Street in Center Texas, there was a big storm last night it had no shelter of any kind soaked with rain I go to the police this morning they tell me there is no laws in Texas that requires them to be in any kind of shelter and there is nothing they can do about this ,,,,I stopped this morning 3 times to be exact took this picture and stood there talking to it from the street as it shook all over freezing to death ,,,,I’m so angry I’m outraged I see a different dog tied to this tree every other week ,,,I can get no help I scream and cry and I can get no dam help to help the dogs in Center Texas this is a crying shame -----I ask this morning where is all the strays going I get a reply they are being eaten or shot so there is none on the streets anymore Dear Lord I’m living in hell let me wake up soon from this nightmare or someone somewhere will come to help.
They will do nothing here nothing I’ve begged and pleaded for 5 years all they will say is can’t do anything.
The police officer told me that the strays get eaten I can’t stop crying he told me that’s where they are going and if the dog catcher gets them he is shooting them I’m living in hell and a dam nightmare.”
Another officer later discovered that the dog’s situation was in fact illegal when another person called to complain. That officer went to the property and claimed the Spaniel and another dog did have adequate shelter and food/water. Several animals are chained throughout the community around the clock. Texas law prohibits the tethering of an animal between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. and also has restrictions on the type of tethering. The law requires humane destruction of animals seized by animal control and prohibits the arbitrary killing of a domestic animal by anyone. These statutes can be found here.
The cry for help did result in the rescue of three Chihuahuas living on the street, cold and starving. They are currently at Animal Medical Center of Panola County in Carthage, Texas. A fundraiser has been set up for their medical care here. A rescue group is needed to take in these three tiny babies for adoption. Any group that is able to help can contact Urgent Animals in Center, Texas through their Facebook page here.
Many people are writing to the City and media outlets about this situation. Houston Animal News Examiner will post an update when available.
To see pictures of animals in need and follow the progress, please visit the Urgent Animals in Center, Texas Facebook page here.
UPDATE 10-16-13: The only updates today are not good. People are being threatened on both sides of this situation. The residents reporting the problems are thinking about taking down the Facebook page linked above because they are afraid for their safety. Some of the residents with dogs on chains are being threatened with violence as well by others. I am now sorry that I wrote this article. The intent of the article was to benefit the animals in need. That does not appear to be the result at this time.
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