MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - There's more trouble at the Memphis Animal Shelter and again, it was caught on tape. Advocates say footage from security cameras show workers mistreating the animals.
The city turned over the security camera video after an animal advocate went through the procedure of a public records request. It shows one employee after another, dragging dogs around the shelter on what are called catchpoles.
This kind of treatment is a no-no, according to the shelter's policy manual, and with good reason says animal advocate Debi Berry.
"A catchpole is like a noose; the more tension you pull, the tighter it goes around the neck," she explained.
In the video, a worker using a catch pole lifts the puppy onto a scale, weighs the dog, then carries the dog out of the room. Later the worker lifts the dog off the floor, dangling from the pole, to put it into a cage.
Berry said she was "horrified. Here we have the mayor saying we have well-trained staff at MAS and then we see video like this."
The videos were posted on a shelter watchdog blog.
New shelter administrator James Rogers is aware of several similar incidents. In an e-mail to a shelter volunteer he wrote his plan is to "take swift and corrective action on the footage seen," and that he is "aggrieved with the footage and will have all employees retrained with proper care and the use of the catchpole."
The truth is, employees know not to drags dogs on catch poles. They've been warned in the past.
"Time and time again we've been told employees are being retrained," Berry noted. "Now the new administration is going to retrain."
Maybe this time retraining will work. With less than two weeks on the job, the truth is the new administrator is cracking down on employees behaving badly.
Just last week Rogers said, "Operational changes are coming and significant changes for the better."
Of course the public has heard that before, and that's the truth.