CHADBOURN, N.C. (WECT) – The Columbus County Animal Shelter is disputing claims made by Sheriff Jody Greene about complaints three dogs in the Chadbourn area were living in poor conditions.
According to shelter director Loretta Shipman, the animal shelter received three different complaints about the living conditions of three dogs at a home on Peacock Road in Chadbourn.
Shipman sent Animal Control Officers (ACO) to the house after each of the three calls, but says the dogs had shelter, food and water and there was no need to take them back to the shelter. Her only concern was whether or not they were vaccinated for rabies.
“We went and left a 72-hour note saying we need to know if the animals had rabies vaccinations,” said Shimpan. “We did not see anything else we could take the dogs for or anything like that because they had everything.”
The owner never got back to them and during the second and third visits, the ACO noticed the note was gone from the door each time. Shipman said an ACO eventually got in contact with a family member of the owner who says they come and go, but the dogs are taken care of.
According to an article by The News Reporter, Sheriff Jody Greene personally responded to a complaint, along with his wife, about the animals living in “inhumane” conditions on Friday, February 21. Earlier that same day, an ACO responded to a complaint at the home and again, found nothing that prompted bringing the dogs into the shelter.
WECT spoke to Sheriff Greene on the phone Tuesday.
“I can’t tell you the emails and phone calls we get about the animals being mistreated,” said Sheriff Greene. “We’re [the sheriff’s office] not trained on how to handle animals. They don’t teach you that in basic law enforcement.”
Sheriff Greene said he and his wife were going to bring wood chips and blankets to the dogs to keep them warm Friday night, but once they saw their living conditions, they called animal control. Sheriff Greene said he found two pit bulls chained to a tree and an Australian Shepard in another pen living in mud and water in 30 degree temperatures.
Greene said an ACO told him they had visited the home 41 times but never made contact with the owner. However, the shelter refutes the claim and says officers only visited the home three times.
Animal control took the dogs to the shelter Friday night and as of Tuesday, they were waiting to hear back from the owner or owner’s family member.
There were also two goats and chickens on the property. Shipman said someone is fostering the goats and the chickens are “wild.” In other reports, Greene alleges there was also a cat, but Shipman has no reports of cats at the home.
“We cannot go out and take every dog in Columbus County that does not have bedding,” said Shipman.
“I think that’s poor management,” said Greene. “We [the sheriff’s office] don’t have the resources to keep responding to their calls.”
Greene addressed rumors about the sheriff’s office taking over the animal shelter.
“Me wanting the animal shelter? Absolutely not,” said Greene. “That’s just a headache, but if it’s going to be my name drug in the middle, I’m going to step up.”
Greene said the case is still under investigation and someone will, most likely, be facing charges in the future.
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