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  #11  
Old 03-08-2011
chuck2858 chuck2858 is offline
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ok, i am really grateful for all the information on dealing with the adoption part of this issue. but i need more feed back on how to deal with the chief as he wants me to go retreive these dogs even 2 -3 weeks after the adoption. my issue is with the facts. 1) the dog was a stray. 2) the dog was advertised for 2 weeks( seven days longer than our city code requires) 3) the dog becomes city property after 7 days. 4) the dog was adopted to a new owner. 5) the old owner sees a flyer we posted. 6) wants her dog back. 7) chief tells me to go get it, period. don't come back without the dog.
My ethical issue is that the dog no longer belongs to the old owner. it Belonges to the city to dispose of as we see fit. as a city pound i am not obligated to try to find homes for any animal, period. because i care about them i do my best to find good homes for them. i do have an adoption rate close to 90% on dogs. if i am going to be required to go back and undo the adoptions of animals i have placed i may have to find another line of work or dispose of the animals another way.
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  #12  
Old 03-08-2011
chuck2858 chuck2858 is offline
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ok, i am really grateful for all the information on dealing with the adoption part of this issue. but i need more feed back on how to deal with the chief as he wants me to go retreive these dogs even 2 -3 weeks after the adoption. my issue is with the facts. 1) the dog was a stray. 2) the dog was advertised for 2 weeks( seven days longer than our city code requires) 3) the dog becomes city property after 7 days. 4) the dog was adopted to a new owner. 5) the old owner sees a flyer we posted. 6) wants her dog back. 7) chief tells me to go get it, period. don't come back without the dog.
My ethical issue is that the dog no longer belongs to the old owner. it Belonges to the city to dispose of as we see fit. as a city pound i am not obligated to try to find homes for any animal, period. because i care about them i do my best to find good homes for them. i do have an adoption rate close to 90% on dogs. if i am going to be required to go back and undo the adoptions of animals i have already placed i may have to find another line of work, or dispose of the animals another way(possibly send them to rescue groups etc.).
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smile at everyone it makes them nervous LOL

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Beware of Goats LOL They are smarter than they look!!
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  #13  
Old 03-08-2011
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First, have you responded to your chief IN WRITING quoting the relevent parts of the code you are working under? I know Weiser is a small place, is the former owner of the dog a neighbor, church member or something else to the chief (or, my luck, a relative?). What is her reason for not claiming her dog? Out of town, in hospital, ignorance?

Next, get really busy finding that information on the adopter and let them KNOW what is going on before they read about it in the paper or on the news. Your credibility and professionalism is at stake here, too.

You have an issue that, at this point, is not a major problem. It CAN turn into one if you don't do some work to cover some bases.

If you don't have a report to your chief by the end of this week outlining (in a more professional way) your last paragraph in the above post then you may need to quit. The chief is your boss and being insubordinate will not keep you employed. It is part of our job to point out to our bosses a problem we see, but in the end we follow orders or we walk.
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  #14  
Old 03-09-2011
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Ultimately, though, if you can't find the adopter's details, that's where it ends, isn't it, despite what your boss wants?

If you do find the adopter's details, your best bet is to do a softly softly and sound him/her out to see if they are prepared for the dog to go back to the original owner. If they want to hang on to the dog, the old owner is out of luck.

If your boss insists on getting the dog back, effectively that would be an attempt at theft, right? Or you would need a warrant to seize the dog, and no court would grant that under the circumstances, I think.

Alternatively, the old owner might try to sue to get the dog back, but if your paperwork is in order, they wouldn't have a leg to stand on either.

The fact you can't find the adopter's details might be in your favour in a way with your boss - as in, you can't give him what he wants, which sounds to me like it's bordering on illegal.
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  #15  
Old 03-09-2011
acofred acofred is offline
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Does this lady even have proof that it was her dog? Anyone can see a cute dog on a flyer and claim it's theirs. You could tell your chief to go get the dog himself; but that would probably get you fired. You could go over his head. There is always somebody over the police chief. Or you could ask the new owner, and if they refuse, tell the chief there's nothing more you can do. It would be up the the old owner to take it to court.

If you have a union, which I'm guessing you don't cause your town is so small, but if you do, go to them with the "don't come back without the dog" threat. Which is what it is, a threat on your job.
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  #16  
Old 03-09-2011
chuck2858 chuck2858 is offline
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i have been giving this whole situation a lot of thought. i am going to speak with my chief tomorrow about my concerns, and i will try to be tactfull. i do like my job and i would rather not resign. but i will have to come to some kind of compromise with him concerning taking adopted dogs back from people that have adopted them. in my thinking it is not right. thanks again for all your suggestions and thoughts.
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  #17  
Old 03-09-2011
hasbeenaco hasbeenaco is offline
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Good luck with the chief tomorrow. If you go in there agreeing that you have a problem; he can't hold that against you. If you make it clear that you are eager to work with him to develop a system that will not allow for a repeat of this situation; he can't hold that against you. If you then express your worries and concerns, he should be quite receptive to them since now your working with him, not against him. Tact and diplomacy....and a desire to work toward a solution will carry you a long way.

It also helps that you're a one man show and he likely can't replace you without a whole lot of grief and effort on his part! Just make sure he signs off on any new policies or procedures you agree on. Document, document, document....
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  #18  
Old 03-10-2011
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That's good advice. You both have a problem, one that could get messy on many counts - go in there with solutions. Bosses love them (especially when they take credit for them )

Any way you can show you are improving a process has to be given some thought. Do a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats), show you have thought out a plan, show you are indispensible, and show how your boss' plan to snatch the dog is a bone-headed one that could cost him HIS job.

Ultimately, you don't want to have to resign if you can possibly help it, just to prove a point. I would have done that multiple times over if I couldn't look at the overall big picture.
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  #19  
Old 03-10-2011
acofred acofred is offline
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I do sympathize; I'm saddled with bosses kinda like this. The reluctance to quit is not based so much on having to job-hunt again, but the fear of what they would replace you with. Trying to make a more professional program isn't without its headaches. Good luck!
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  #20  
Old 03-10-2011
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My theory is to do what you need to to sleep well at night. You may not like some things, but you may have to put up with them to look at the bigger picture, that overall you are making a difference in the right way.

I try to look at things at times from the dogs perspective, after all, they can't speak for themselves.
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