‘Saved from death row;’ Rescues take in dogs from Franklin County shelter


COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Saved from dog death row. Tuesday, NBC4 got a first look at some of the only dogs to leave the Franklin County Dog Shelter since the respiratory illness outbreak. A local rescue said most are healthy, great pets that would have ultimately been killed. But, the shelter tells a different story.

The shelter said not all the dogs taken in by rescues over the past week would have been euthanized. The I Have a Dream Rescue said that’s what they were led to believe and why they didn’t think twice to take in as many as they could.

We met Ruby and Rufus Tuesday. Two playful, seemingly healthy and happy pit bulls. Dogs who Misti Martin-Fuller with the I Have a Dream Rescue said were hours from being killed if they didn’t rescue them.

“If we hadn’t gone on the 14th the four dogs that we pulled that night would have died that night. I have absolutely no doubt,” said Martin-Fuller.

Martin-Fuller said Ruby was one of the dogs the shelter told her, “needed to be pulled” because of behavioral problems. Something Ruby’s new foster mom Deanne Ruff said she can’t believe.

“She is the most perfect dog I have ever seen,” said Ruff.

We reached out to Tyler Lowry, Director of Public Affairs with the Franklin County Board of Commissioners who is now handling questions regarding the shelter. He said some dogs aren’t, “appropriate for adoption.” And, said some are euthanized because of behavior and health challenges. Others because they can’t, “humanely tolerate a six week quarantine.”

Mandy and Jeff Kasza have two pitbull rescues and had no problem letting their 17 month old son play with Ruby and Rufus.

“It breaks my heart. All those dogs that were perfectly good dogs. Healthy, well-mannered, they’re being put to sleep for no reason. You want to call it distemper, you can call it what you want, but it’s just heartbreaking,” said Mandy Kasza.

Ruby and Rufus are now looking for forever homes after getting a new lease on life.

Lowry said it’s not true the shelter puts down dogs for no reason.  He said they’re dealing with a public health challenge and trying to save as many animals as possible.

The rescue has taken in 6 dogs from the shelter and plans to take in even more. If you’re interested in adopting or donating visit: http://www.ihadro.org/

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