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SPCA's timing a bit off 

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SPCA's timing a bit off

In response to Style's courageous and continuous coverage of the Richmond Animal Shelter, the president of the Richmond SPCA writes to express her pleasure that the pound is finally improved. Well, where was the SPCA during the painful, three-year struggle to bring ethical conduct and sound management to the pound? Many people joined S.O.S. in pressuring the city to eliminate the pound's incompetent management, waste of tax dollars, steady loss of caring employees and abuse of animals. The SPCA was not among them.

Unlike the SPCA, our pounds are not well funded and are not humane societies. Out of 116 pounds in Virginia, less than 10 percent operate in full compliance with the law. Considered low priorities by most municipalities, our pounds do the best they can with budgetary crumbs, operating with rapid turnovers of low-paid and over worked employees, inadequate facilities, and out-of-date equipment. The RSPCA has a perfect right to reinvent itself, but it has no right to think that others have "fixed" the city pound in order to take over the SPCA's traditional role in the community.

-- Walter M. Dotts III



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