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White Oak animal shelter cited for record-keeping failures

| Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, 4:47 a.m.

The state dog warden cited White Oak Animal Safe Haven for failure to keep proper kennel records.

The animal shelter failed to maintain kennel records complete with dog information as per state dog law, Allegheny County dog warden Steve Stoehr said in the citation filed last week.

He said kennel records were missing for four dogs.

“We have never been cited,” animal shelter president Ina Jean Marton said. “We've had a perfect record until this particular time frame when the officer manager failed to keep the proper records.”

“What she's being cited for is keeping inaccurate records of the month that I left,” former shelter business manager Frank Sabolcik said. “For the four dogs in question, her records do not match Ken Ferree's. Ferree's records show them as being euthanized and her records show them not existing. Records up to Sept. 7 were all kept track of. We have been inspected and passed with flying colors up to this point.”

“I didn't euthanize these dogs,” Marton said. “The office manager brought them in when he knew one already bit the neighbor. I cannot have this in the shelter. I had them removed from the shelter and wherever they went with Ken Ferree, I don't know. He's the only one I can call here for animal control. Even though I have a no-kill shelter, I'm allowed to remove dogs. I never had any biting dog in my shelter until all this. I have to put the safety of the people first.”

White Oak Animal Safe Haven claims to be a no-kill animal shelter.

“A no-kill shelter does mean ‘no kill' as far as animals that are adoptable,” Marton said. “We're giving them another life and a chance to live again. These four dogs were not adoptable so I've had them removed.”

As far as records, she said she can't access the shelter's computers at this time and a dog log book is missing.

“It's very clear what animal control does,” Ferree said. “We've never hidden the fact that dogs are put down.”

He said his McKeesport animal control facilities were “surprise audited” by the state a little more than a week ago.

“We were ordered to produce all records,” Ferree said. “They want to see disposal and intake records. They made copies of our records and they abruptly left.”

No citations were filed against Ferree Kennels.

Stacy Lee is a staff writer for Trib Total Media

. She can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1970, or slee@tribweb.com.

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