Will a Massive Spay-and-neuter Program Fix Dallas' Dog Problem?

On the Texas Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners' website, a handy link can take you to all the licensed animal clinics in the state.If you click on 75215, the South Dallas zip code where Antoinette Brown was mauled to death by a pack of dogs last spring, guess how many pop up?Zero.OK, try the one just east of it, 75210.Zilch.Go further south to 75217: Not a single animal hospital.Let's try 75241, home to two of the city's higher education hubs, Paul Quinn College and the University of North Texas at Dallas.Sorry, nothing to see here, either.Now, perhaps, you can better understand the vital importance of the public-private partnership announced Thursday to curb the pet population plight in southern Dallas, where loose dogs have roamed the streets for decades while city hall looked the other way.The lack of close, affordable animal hospitals is another example of the glaring dearth of basic services - from grocery stores to mental health clinics -- in poverty-stricken zip codes in southern Dallas.Throw in a long-underfunded and poorly managed city agency, Dallas Animal Services, which failed to nip the problem in the bud, and you can see why residents often walk around with bats and sticks to protect themselves from potentially dangerous animals.Finally, there's something to cheer about.Three nonprofits - the Rees-Jones Foundation, the W.W. Caruth Foundation and the Dallas Foundation - donated $13.5 million toward an ambitious $24 million spay-and-neuter campaign that will be waged in southern Dallas.  Continue reading...

Copyright The Dallas Morning News
Contact Us