By Trevor Busch
Chief Graham Abela clarified the Taber Police Service only euthanizes animals under extenuating circumstances during a recent discussion with the Taber Municipal Police Commission.
Chair John MacDonald had inquired about an item in the monthly bylaw report which indicated a cat had been euthanized.
“We had a cat that was found injured and then taken to the vet, and the vet determined the animal should be euthanized and then took the appropriate steps that they needed to take,” said Abela at the May 17 meeting of the TMPC. “We, as the Taber Police Service, do not euthanize animals. Dogs, through our dog bylaw; we have euthanized animals that – within our policy – are injured to the point that they can’t be transported to a vet, and are in need of being euthanized. But that is not a common practice, and mostly it’s not domestic animals, it’s usually deer.”
MacDonald then switched track and asked if Taber has a current dog problem.
“I think the Taber Lost Paws Society do an awesome job at dealing with our dog issues,” replied Abela. “I think that they have been a great partner. I think they might need some more help, and I think some of the public are taking advantage of their good deeds that the Lost Paws Society does. What we’re finding lately, both in the MD of Taber and the Town of Taber, are dogs running at large with no owners. So what’s happening is – we think – we have people from outside our community that recognize that we have a decent system, who are dropping dogs off, and unfortunately we’re collecting them – well, it’s fortunate for the dog – we’re collecting them and trying to re-home them through the Lost Paws Society, but that is putting strains on the capacity of that organization.”
While highlighting this concern, Abela stated clearly he is satisfied with the current situation in Taber.
“I don’t think we have a dog problem. I think our animal control officers – our Community Standards officers, both in the MD and the Town, are doing a great job at that, and we have a great partnership with the Lost Paws Society.”