Mon, Jun 11, 2018 - Page 3 News List

New Taipei City shelter condemned for abandoning dog

By Chen Wen-chan and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

An elderly Maltese named Tang Tang, which went missing last week in New Taipei City’s Bali District, is pictured in Kaohsiung in an undated photograph.

Photo courtesy of Animal Rescue Team Taiwan

Animal Rescue Team Taiwan yesterday criticized an animal shelter run by the New Taipei City Government’s Animal Protection and Health Inspection Office for allegedly abandoning an old, nearly blind dog on a mountain.

The group said it received a complaint yesterday from a dog owner surnamed Chen (陳) whose Maltese, Tang Tang (唐唐), went missing on Thursday near the Bali Ferry Pier in Bali District (八里).

After searching for some time, Chen learned that Tang Tang had been taken to the Bali District Fire Department, and was then sent to the public animal shelter, the group said.

However, within 24 hours of Tang Tang’s arrival at the shelter, shelter staff had reportedly left it on a mountain, the group said, adding that the shelter also reportedly told Chen that it had not received Tang Tang.

Only after a police investigation did Chen discover that Tang Tang had been abandoned.

With the help of a local group on Facebook, Chen was able to find Tang Tang.

Old dogs are unable to survive in the wild, and Tang Tang is nearly blind, with poor senses of smell and hearing, Animal Rescue Team Taiwan spokesperson Anthony Ni (倪京台) said.

The shelter staff should be punished and Animal Protection and Health Inspection Office Director Chen Yuan-chuan (陳淵泉) should step down, Ni said.

Chen told the media yesterday that the case was under investigation, but he would request disciplinary action against himself.

A veterinarian stationed at the shelter has been transferred, two staff members have been fired and another staff member has also resigned, he said.

Hopefully the public would not ignore the office’s efforts to fight for animal rights due to a single case, Chen said.

Additional reporting by Chen Hsin-yu

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