Rochester, N.Y.— A Rochester family is struggling with the loss of their family pet after Rochester Animal Control accidentally euthanized their dog over the weekend.
Quinton Woody says his dog Oscar, a 2-year-old pit bull, was in quarantine for ten days at Rochester Animal Control after Oscar bit an Internet technician who came onto Woody’s property. According to Woody, the technician didn’t notify the family that he would at the house.
As a part of normal procedures, Animal Control took in Oscar to make sure he didn’t any diseases and was up-to-date on his vaccinations.
On Monday, Woody’s wife, Jennifer, went to pick up Oscar, but she was told that Oscar was missing.
Jennifer was then asked to take a look at three dogs that were euthanized over the weekend. One of the dogs she was shown was Oscar.
Rochester Animal Control says the euthanazation was a mistake and that paperwork may have gotten mixed up.
“As far as we can tell, there was some confusion about which dogs belonged to which cage and also, the paperwork attached to each,” says Chris Fitzgerald, Director of Animal Services for the City of Rochester. “We're looking at what step in the process and procedures may have broken down.”
Woody says the mistake is unacceptable.
“If you go to the hospital, the doctor doesn't say ‘Oh we got the wrong patient in for surgery’,” says Woody. “That’s unacceptable and a lack of professionalism.”
When Woody rescued Oscar six months ago, he was malnourished and skinny. He raised him to a healthy weight and his three young children had grown to love Oscar. Woody says he didn’t have the heart to break the news to his children. He told them Oscar went to live on a farm.
“They're too young. My youngest is one, the oldest is four and I have a three-year-old. They don't need to know about it yet. Not like this.”
Woody says Animal Control called to apologize and offer condolences and they offered to make the adoption process easier if the family chooses to adopt another pet. However, Woody says none of that would bring Oscar back.
“You can't replace him. There’s really nothing they can even do. There's nothing he could offer.”
Oscar’s death comes after two pugs died in July while also under the care of Rochester Animal Control.
Two animal control officers had placed the pugs in the back of a van in 90 degree weather. The van’s air conditioner was broken.
The pugs belonged to Rochester resident, Nancy Lee but were taken in by Animal Control when the dogs had dug their way out of the yard.
“The two incidents are definitely separate and unrelated,” says Fitzgerald. “Mistakes are not excuses and we're not comfortable with mistakes happening. We're trying to look at each of those incidents separately and make sure we're doing the best job we can."