On Thursday, a sweet, loving 12-year-old dog was mauled to death at our Santa Barbara County shelter. This was a needless tragedy in which kennels were left open and dogs were let loose in a small space, unsupervised. So far, Katie is the only confirmed death. We don’t know how many more dogs were injured or killed.

The county was charged with keeping Katie safe and protected during her stay. Instead she was killed in the most horrible way imaginable through the county’s negligence. Katie was a beloved old girl who, while battling cancer herself, kept her dad’s spirits up with love and kisses every day. Now her dad has to live knowing she died in terror and agony for the rest of his life. Most of us would never get over that; we know he won’t. Our hearts go out to Katie’s dad and the volunteers who loved her. We are all left wondering how many more of our beloved dogs are dead or injured.

This tragedy underscores the continuing mismanagement of our county shelters. Jan Glick, the director of animal control, is responsible for how our shelters are run. I, for one, won’t allow her to pass the buck on this one. Katie deserves better.


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