Jack Highberger

Faulty Drug, Botched Euthanasias Lead to Review at Mesquite Animal Shelter

The City of Mesquite says it plans to bring in an outside group to look at the Mesquite City Animal Shelter's euthanasia process after a series of botched euthanasias last year.

"We are going to look at it every step of the way to make sure the drugs we are using are the best ones," City Manager Cliff Keheley said.

According to the city, the five confirmed instances beginning in March of 2018 were caused by a faulty drug.

"Once we observed the adverse reactions we shut down the use of that drug immediately," Keheley said.

Former shelter employee Andrew Flores was among those to witness one of the botched euthanasia's and alleges shelter management allowed the use of the drug to go on longer than they should have.

"I've never seen anything like it," Flores said. "I want to say it was a 17-pound beagle which should have taken about 2 to 3 cc's of the drug, we had to end up using 32 cc's if I remember correctly."

On Thursday city staff met with rescue groups and concerned citizens after allegations of mismanagement at the shelter continued to circulate online. Among the new wave of allegations is a rash of parvo cases, a highly contagious viral illness, that Keheley says are being handled.

"We wouldn't call it an outbreak we've observed a few dogs that have come in and been adopted showing signs of parvo," Keheley said.

The shelter is currently in the midst of a facility wide cleaning. According to City Staff, the shelter receives around 6,000 animals every year and has a clearance rate of over 90-percent, which is the highest in its history.

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