The state agriculture department has added up the number of dogs it has rescued from substandard facilities in the last 22 months.
Since January, 2009, the department’s animal care facility section has rescued more than 3,700 dogs. That’s almost 170 a month. Former facilities inspector Matt Rold has headed the office most of that time. He says the majority of the dogs taken from a compliance or legal action or a tip from the public. But he says some have come from licensed facilities.
(Public tips can be made to the Operation Bark Alert hotline: 573-751-3377 or through the Bark Alert website: http://mda.mo.gov/animals/ACFA/barkalert/)
Rold says the program has only 12 inspectors who check on hundreds of breeders, about 600 shelter and rescue operations, and hundreds of pet stores. The department has asked the legislature to fund seven more inspectors but lawmakers haven’t provided them.
Proposition B adopted by voters Tuesday does not provide any additional funding or personnel for enforcement of Missouri’s Animal Care Facility Act.