She survived bombs, the war and neglect – but she didn’t survive an American animal shelter. The New York Times recently reported that Target, a celebrated Afgan stray who made headlines after confronting a suicide bomber outside American military barracks and subsequently being transported to the US for adoption, was accidentally euthanized by an animal shelter worker.
This made me so sad when I read about it!
Target apparently escaped from her adoptive family’s home and was captured by animal services soon after. Her family recognized her on the shelter’s website and paid the fee to retrieve her, but found out that an employee had euthanized the dog by mistake before they could pick her up.
It is concerning that an agency which deals with animals does not have a better management system in place to ensure that the correct animal is being handled. I was particularly disturbed by the quote from the former employee which was to the effect of, “… don’t worry about, mistakes happen” regarding previous animal care errors Is it so hard to have disposable collars, for example, which gives incoming animals a simple ID number so that their fate can be tracked by computer? Hell, it would take me half a day to write a simple program that does this.
This story also highlights the fact that not all dogs are meant to be cooped up inside a house or backyard, no matter how spacious. Inevitably, they will find a way to escape. That’s why its so important to make sure your pet is identifiable -such as by tattoo or microchip.
Very sad story – let’s hope some good comes out of it.