Zion-Benton Times - Community News - Your Life

"Dog in The Dumpster" Sparks Outrage


Dog In the Dumpster Sparks Outrage

Cars filled the City of Zion's parking and overflowed to PNC Bank's lot as animal right activist filled City Hall during the July 17, 2018 council meeting to express outrage over reported conditions at the City's Animal Control Center.

Cari Clark led the charge as she confronted Mayor Al Hill and the council with accusations of mismanagement at the City's Animal Control facility.

"I was helping this gentleman (Chris S.) find his lost dog, which was taken to the Zion Animal Control and we were confronted with this horrific smell," Cari Clark explained. "We opened up the dumpster and inside was a deceased German Shepard, laying in the dumpster. I was appalled."

"There is not one employee in the City of Zion that put the dog in the dumpster," Mayor Al Hill explained. "We believe that a resident of the City of Zion put the dog in the Dumpster."

Following these comments were questions about how the city disposed of injured or dead animals.

"How do they euthanize the dogs?" Cari Clark questioned.

One resident reported that an official with Zion Animal Control said that they shoot the dogs.

"We don't shoot any animals here in Zion," Commissioner Mike McDowell said.

According to City officials, Harbor Animal Hospital is the veterinary of record for the city and they provide any necessary services to cats and dogs that go through the center.

There were more comments about the cleanliness of the facility, conditions of the site and standard operating practices.

Mayor Hill explained that the Illinois Dept. of Agriculture Bureau of Animal Welfare recently made an unannounced inspection a day or so prior to the "dog in the dumpster" incident which was verified by dating on the report. At a resident's request, the city made copies of the report and passed them out to anyone wanting it.

Commissioner Mike McDowell said that past inspections yielded perfect results. This past inspection, the City received acceptable rating in all categories with the exception of one area. One kennel had more soiling than appropriate according to the inspector and this category received a fair rating.

"It (the kennel in question) was cleaned immediately," said Commissioner Mike McDowell. McDowell explained that the cages are normally cleaned once a day and sometimes twice, depending upon the need.

“This morning, I and the Chief of Police went down to the kennel for an inspection. We take these complaints very seriously,” McDowell said.

ari Clark and Megan Albright

According to McDowell, when animals arrive at the Animal Control Center, there is an effort to return the dogs or cats to their owners. If this in not possible, after a 3-day period, the dogs are transferred to Orphans of the Storm, an animal shelter and adoption center.

City officials expressed concern that exaggerated claims and statements that may not be true were stimulating an overblown view of the situation on social media.

“We will move forward and we will rectify the issues that you have brought up,” said Commissioner Bill McKinney.

Mayor Hill explained that Advanced Disposal, a waste management firm, had been contacted and a request had been made to place a lock on the dumpster to prevent further dumping of animals.


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