Animal Rescue Group Asks Citizens To Attend Police Jury Meeting In Abbeville
Animal Aid for Vermilion Area is urging citizens to attend the Vermilion Parish Police Jury meeting in Abbeville Wednesday evening to encourage changes to that Parish's Rabies Control Unit, and sign their online petition.
News stories have surfaced concerning an incident that took place last week at the Rabies Control Unit in Abbeville. According to reports, an animal rescue organization from Ascension Parish had contacted the Vermilion Parish Rabies Control Unit about 3 dogs who were set for euthanasia on Thursday of last week. Animal Control officials were told that the rescuers would be there by 8am. When the rescuers had not shown up by 8am, an animal control officer euthanized those animals.
Many citizens have chimed in on the Animal Aid for Vermilion Area Facebook page, outraged that the animal control officers put the dogs down knowing that rescue was on the way.
Animal Aid for Vermilion Area has started a petition asking that the Vermilion Parish Police Jury, the entity in charge of the Rabies Control Unit, change their policies and allow volunteers access to the animals being held at the unit. The group is trying to get the Vermilion Parish Police Jury to use technology (photos, Facebook, Twitter, etc) to help get the word out about animals being held there, waiting for euthanasia. The meeting is set for Wednesday at 5:30 pm at the Vermilion Parish Courthouse, 100 N State Street in Abbeville.
Through my conversations with people who are familiar with this subject, the Vermilion Parish Rabies Control Unit is not like an animal "shelter": these dogs and cats can not be "adopted out" at the facility. The only way these animals get a reprieve is if A) the owner claims the animal or B) a non-profit, 501 (C) 3 organization "rescues" them. It is that rescue organization that then finds forever homes or foster homes for the animals.
If any of the animals aren't claimed or rescued within the allotted time, they are killed.
To be fair:: the rescue organization, having to drive from Ascension Parish, was about 3 hours late. Rescuers called the Rabies Control Unit at 11am and were informed the the dogs were "no longer available".
As for the effectiveness of social media on pet rescue/adoption: According to the Animal Aid for Vermilion Area Facebook page, here are some statistics from 2013:
Total (animal) Intake 1548
Euthanized (animals) 1425
Of animals allowed to be posted on Facebook (456 total), 89% were rescued; 11% were either euthanized or dying of illness.
If these numbers are accurate, it seems that the use of social media greatly increases the chance of these animals being rescued/adopted.
The thing that you can do is MAKE CERTAIN THAT YOU SPAY/NEUTER YOUR PETS. Also, consider fostering for a rescue organization, or donating to help those who do foster/adopt.
You can send donations to Animal Aid for Vermilion Area, 5937 Veterans Memorial Drive Abbeville, LA 70510; via Paypal to firstname.lastname@example.org; by calling the AAVA vet (Be sure to mention the AAVA account): Crowley Vet 19131 Crowley Eunice Highway Crowley, LA 70526 (337) 788-0614.
You can also sign the petition, which will be presented to the Vermilion Parish Police Jury during the meeting.