Tonight we found a dog roaming Mt. Tabor. That’s him to the right. He was distressed and obviously lost. Like my two dogs, he had a Multnomah County ID Tag with the appropriate phone number to call. So, I called the number hoping to get some help in locating the dogs owner or someone to come out to shelter him. Instead, I got a young kid who was only willing to do one thing: tell me the owners phone number. I was sitting on the side of Mt. Tabor with my two pooches off leash and a large stray Husky yelping and bucking like a bronco. I didn’t exactly have a free hand to write down the number. I asked why Multnomah County wouldn’t call the owner themselves for me or send a truck out to take the pooch to a shelter. After all, that must be what they do there, right? Help lost dogs find their owner, or a home? The answer I got was “we’d rather you called the owner”. When I asked “what is it you actually do there?” the response was “um, I’m not sure we can do anything to help, there is no funding”. What?! No funding? What about the licensing fee I paid for both of my dogs and their tags? Where does that money go? What about all the off leash fines? Tax money? He didn’t even have a list of shelters for me to call, never mind calling one himself.
I put the dog on a leash and called the owner using the number they gave me. Disconnected. Surprise. Ok, we were going to take him home but first decided to walk him around Tabor a bit. That’s when we thankfully found you. You’d been drinking and lost your dog. We’re glad we found you, but this does not excuse the city’s neglect. At least I don’t pay for your neglect.
Your website says “Licensing helps pay for the care of homeless animals while attempts are made to find them new homes”. Perhaps someone should tell the kid on the phone.