Woman threatens to take action after dog is put down

By Crystal Price - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - A lake area woman is threatening to take action against Calcasieu Parish Animal Services after she said Animal Control mistakenly put down her dog.

Donna Johnson's pit bull was picked up by Animal Control on February 21st after witnesses said he injured two other animals in the neighborhood, according to Calcasieu Parish Animal Services.

Johnson claimed it was not her dog involved in the incident.

"It was not him," said Johnson. "There was no blood on him and I knew it couldn't have been him."

However, Calcasieu Parish Animal Services said there was evidence that pointed to Johnson's Dog.

"It was questionable to know who the actual owner was," said Tiffany Gardner, the assistant director of Calcasieu Parish Animal Services. "With the witness statements and everyone involved we figured out that it was Ms. Johnson's dog."

Johnson had started building a kennel to comply with Animal Services' requirements for a dog deemed dangerous. But when Johnson went to pick up her pit bull, the facility had already put him to sleep.

"We held the dog the legal time period and after that time period, we take ownership of the animal," said Gardner.

Even though Johnson had complied with regulations to build the pen, that message was not relayed to everyone there.

"Not everyone here was aware of the deals that were being made with her," said Gardner.

As a result, Animal Services put her pit bull down before Johnson made it up there to pick him up.

"It's a very unfortunate circumstance," said Gardner. "We feel for Ms. Johnson and her dog, but we work both sides of the community. We have to protect her neighbor's animals as well as the community from animals that are dangerous."

Calcasieu Parish Animal Services is working to improve their procedure to make sure this same incident does not happen again.

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