One of the neighborhood stray cats (whom we had grown very fond of and would have adopted if we didn't already have three cats) was hit by a car late one night but still had movement in all but one of his legs. Worried that if we moved him ourselves we could possibly hurt him even more, we called animal control who took two hours to arrive and then proceeded to pick him up by the nape of the neck and shove him in the carrier. The officer refused to tell us where they were taking him until I practically begged him. Literally one minute after the animal control officer drove away, we looked the place up and there were several different addresses and phone numbers (all of which didn't answer when I called) so I called animal control back and asked them if they could give me the phone number to the vet they take their injured animals to.
New Haven Animal Control Officer Tammy Hewston answered the phone and after refusing to answer my question she pretended to put me on hold for about 30 seconds to "call the officer who picked him up" and then got back on the phone with me and said "Yep, his back is broken ma'am." I asked her how they could know this 2-3 minutes after the officer pulled away and she started literally yelling at me "HE'S ALREADY BEEN EUTHANIZED, MAAAAA'AAAAM!" and "he's been put down, maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa'am! He's already dead, maaaaaaaaaaaa'am!" repeatedly. Her yelling was so extremely loud and condescending that I literally started crying and asked her why she was treating me this way and she hung up on me! My boyfriend called her back and she told him he could come in on Monday and talk to the supervisor and refused to give us her name. I had to call repeatedly from a blocked phone number and ask for each of the employees listed on their website until she confirmed her name was Tammy Hewston.
All I wanted to know was the phone number to the vet to talk to them so that if the cat only had a broken leg or some other fixable problem I could pay to have him treated instead of them putting him down. I understand that he could have been seriously injured and if so he probably should have been put down, but the fact of the matter is an animal control officer can't make that diagnosis and especially not in 2-3 minutes. I am positive the cat wasn't dead when I called her but her refusal to relay my desire to help this cat to the vet cost us a lot of precious time and probably resulted in his death.
We've already written a letter to the supervisor but we believe that something else must be done. Someone who cares so little about animals should not be working with them and a grown woman who acts that immature and unprofessional period let alone to clients and customers should not be working with people or at all. Please sign this petition requesting that New Haven Animal Control Officer Tammy Hewston be removed from her position because I would bet I'm not the first or the last person she's going to treat this way.
Sign the petition here: https://www.change.org/petitions/new-haven-animal-control-fire-tammy-hewston
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