Animal Control report shows sharp decline in euthanasia numbers
Ponca City Now - February 24, 2016 10:24 pm
By Beverly Bryant/News Director
Police Chief Don Bohon presented a report Tuesday night to the Animal Control Advisory Board showing a steady decline in the number of animals handled by Animal Control.
In 2015, Animal Control handled 810 dogs, Bohon said. Of those, 618 were strays and 192 were owner surrenders.
The report for all animals showed 1,294 handled by Animal Control. That number has declined each year from a high of 2,091 in 2010, Bohon said.
For the first time, more animals were released by Animal Control than the number euthanized, Bohon said. A total of 690 animals were released – either to their owners or to rescue groups or adopters, he said.
Only 604 animals were euthanized, the lowest number recorded in the seven years charted in the report.
Bohon attributed the decline in euthanizations to several factors, including Ponca City’s spay-neuter ordinance and increased cooperation between Animal Control and several rescue groups in the area to release animals for adoption. In the seven years charted, the highest numbers of euthanizations was in 2011, with 1,202 animals euthanized.
Bohon said he wants to evaluate a new policy which set the number of days an animal is kept at the city’s Animal Control shelter at 10 days. At the six-month mark for that policy, he will do an analysis on the numbers of animals released compared to the number euthanized.
“There has been a steady decline in the numbers handled,” Bohon said. “Enforcement and education has helped to bring those numbers down, but 1,300 is still a lot of animals. We will continue to work with rescues and vets to lower that.”
He said there were other areas of Animal Control’s work that he wanted to report.
“Animal Control picked up 741 dead animals, including deer. It’s not all dogs,” Bohon said.
In addition, Animal Control served 12 vicious dog papers. Most of those were initiated by a call to police, he said.
In 2015, there were 1,978 visitors to Animal Control.
“That sounds like a lot, but it was the same 25 people over and over. The same people come in daily,” he said.
As for the dollars and cents, Bohon said pound fees for holding animals totaled $90,390. City tag money from Animal Control or veterinarians reached $4,364. The number of city tags sold was 1,007, and the number of citations issued was 377.
Bohon said the Ponca City Humane Society took 516 animals from Animal Control in 2015. He said he intends to work with other certified rescues if they have the 501(c)3 documents.
“We will try to work with anyone we can to move an animal out,” Bohon said. “That is always better than euthanasia.”