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Dog Put Down At Humane Society While Owner Was Hospitalized

FORT SMITH (KFSM) – The Sebastian County Humane Society said it put down an aggressive dog on Jan. 22 because employees were not able to handle or vaccinate it....

FORT SMITH (KFSM) – The Sebastian County Humane Society said it put down an aggressive dog on Jan. 22 because employees were not able to handle or vaccinate it.

The dog, a blue heeler named Blue, was one of Amber Harper’s three dogs.

Sebastian County Humane Society Director of Operations Bekah Trotter said in a phone interview it did not hear from anyone about the dog for weeks.

"I was in the hospital, and my brother was watching them,” Harper said. “Somehow the window got broke and they all got out the window."

Animal control picked them up Jan. 13 and the three dogs ended up at the humane society, which has a five-day stray hold policy before the dogs become the shelter's property, according to Trotter.

Trotter said the shelter did not hear from anyone regarding who ownership of the dogs until Feb. 3.

Harper said she was at the hospital for almost three weeks, and was shocked to learn her four-year-old dog Blue had been put down.

“Two of them were in the cage together, and I (asked), 'Where's my third one?'" Harper said.  "They (said), 'I don't know, she's here somewhere,' and they finally brought out some paperwork."

"They said, 'Oh we put her down,'” Harper said.

Harper said she couldn't have anyone pick up her dogs while she was in the hospital.

“They said I had to be there, [and that because] they were my dogs I had to be the one," she said.  "Because they (the Human Society) have to get your license, and fill out a bunch of paperwork.”

She will be picking up her other two dogs, Blaze and Pryor, on Thursday (Feb. 11), and go home without Blue.

“I’ll miss her, just have to move on," Harper said. "I can't do anything about it.”

Trotter said an anonymous donor will be paying the adoption fees for Harper, which she said will cost $150.

“It’s great because I was really scrambling trying to figure this out,” Harper said. “I didn't really know what to do."

Trotter said the shelter normally charges pet owners $18 a day per pet for boarding fees, but is only charging adoption fees to return the dogs.

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