Letters to the Editor

New lobby: 'Lipstick on a pig'

I would like to add my voice to the well-written column by Susan Robinson of the Coalition for Cats and Dogs regarding the closed-door policy at the Finch Road shelter ("County animal shelter director's hold time is up," Sept. 7, Page B-7).

Recently, I went to the shelter to evaluate some dogs for rescue. The lobby has been remodeled to appear clean, efficient and spacious.

However, appearances can be deceiving. Inside the stray-hold areas, conditions were still the same filth and squalor. The closed-door policy now makes the appalling conditions at the shelter easier than ever for the director to hide from public view.

Employee morale is still low, euthanasia rates are still high, and the environment for humans and animals is unhealthy.

The pretty new lobby is merely lipstick on a pig. The funds for the lobby could have been better spent to fix the heating and air conditioning system, which is sadly out of date and helping to spread some of the airborne pathogens responsible for disease transmission.

Mismanagement of the shelter has been the hallmark of Mike McFarland's tenure as director. Thousands of animals are still dying. The Board of Supervisors should be ashamed for allowing this to happen.

TRACI JENNINGS

Modesto

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