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Muskogee city leader asks for 'review' of animal control

Muskogee Animal Control.png
Posted at 6:55 PM, Jun 18, 2024

MUSKOGEE, Okla. — A Muskogee city leader told 2 News he and numerous residents have concerns that the city needs to rethink how it runs animal control.

Ward III Councilor and Deputy Mayor Derrick Reed has served Muskogee for decades, but said he's gotten as many complaints as ever about stray dogs and city animal control's managing of them.

He also recognizes the city shelter almost never has adequate space for them all. He brought up the issue during a recent council committee meeting.

"Just like a bad kid, the animal jumps right back out and is chasing the next car, chasing the next elderly gentleman," Councilor Reed said. "There's a lot of homeless people (too). And with this going into the summertime I have concerns about the dogs chasing the kids."

Muskogee resident Pat Kaseca said she's already been attacked by a pit bull once.
"It charged at my car, my foot as I was getting ready to step outside my vehicle," Kaseca said. "This was last August. I have been calling Code Enforcement since then and documenting the times and dates that this dog is loose."

City of Muskogee said animals found can be impounded at the city shelter (which holds just 49 dog kennels) and the owner can be penalized with several fees if necessary, and would have to appear in court.
But the steps to get there and protect the community, Reed argued, could use some fixing.

Reed said he's already ordered a city review of its code enforcement and animal control protocol.
"(I want to) make sure that my animal control department has all the tools that they need," he said. "And even if it's more manpower, make sure they have everything in place they need to keep our streets safe as we go into another summer."

Kaseca hopes the results will protect her and her neighbors next time.

"I don't see a family walking down here like they used to every evening," Kaseca said. "I told city council we have to do something about our neighborhoods."

The city also asks dog owners in the area to check out its spay-and-neuter (SNAP) clinic which can offer discounts or free appointments to those based on their income to get dogs fixed and vaccinated.

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