Windsor, PETA continue agreement

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 14, 2007

WINDSOR – At least one local entity is satisfied with the services provided by PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals).

In Windsor, Town Administrator Allen Castelloe said PETA’s Community Animal Project (CAP) program will continue.

This comes in the wake of decisions reached by Bertie and Northampton County officials to halt any future dealings with PETA and the CAP program, as did Dr. Pat Proctor, owner of Ahoskie Animal Hospital. Those decisions came on the heels of a recent two-week trial in Hertford County Criminal Superior Court where two PETA employees were cleared of animal cruelty and obtaining property by false pretense charges, but found guilty of littering. Those charges stemmed from a June, 2005 arrest in Ahoskie where Adria Hinkle and Andrew Cook illegally disposed of dead dogs in a private dumpster.

“It’s unfortunate that they (Hinkle and Cook) disposed of the animals in that manner, but we will continue to use PETA’s services at the Windsor Animal Shelter,” Castelloe said. “From our standpoint, they do a good job for us.”

Castelloe explained the procedure used by Windsor in regards to stray or abandoned pets. He said the town ordinance called for a 10-day waiting period once an animal is picked-up and placed in the shelter.

“We ensure that every effort is made to find the owner of the pet,” he said, “but after that 10-day period is over, we have no other choice but to euthanize the animal.”

Castelloe said the town may do something different in the future, but “what we have going with PETA right now is our best alternative.”

He continued, “We have no contract with PETA and the service they provide is free. With that said, if they contact us tomorrow and tell us they will no longer provide the CAP program, we would have to explore other means (of euthanizing animals).”

Castelloe stated that PETA representatives do not come to the Windsor Shelter every week. He said they stop by while in the area or call in advance to inquire if their services are needed in Windsor.

“I wish we didn’t have to provide an animal shelter,” Castelloe concluded. “That’s a sad fact of life because some citizens fail to be responsible pet owners. It’s not the animals fault they are abandoned. That’s the fault of the pet owner and when they fail to accept that responsibility, we step in and take control of the unwanted pet.”