The following is a letter to the editor by Jessica M. The WashCo Chronicle and its editor are not responsible for its content. If you would like to contribute to the WashCo Chronicle, please contact on the Facebook Page.
I wanted to relay my experience with the Washington County Humane Society in the hopes that maybe it will reach someone that can make a change. My intention is not to deter people from adopting but to be cautious and to set expectations for what you can expect to deal with in some cases. I had a friend pass away at a very young age that left behind two pets (cat and a dog). Unbeknownst to any friends the family surrendered them to WCHS, which I cannot fault them for in the wake of the tragedy they experienced. We did not find out about the passing until the animals were gone. I made a call to WCHS to check if the animals were there. I was advised that they were after I explained the situation. I was advised that my name and number were taken down and that I would be contacted right away as soon as they became available. They were going through the initial screening process. I was going to be taking the cat. The same was told to another friend that was adopting the dog.
I waited for them to call, not wanting to interfere with any processes or contribute to what is I am sure is already a heavy workload. The friend that was to adopt the dog messaged me very upset, and stated that the dog was up for adoption on the site. I contacted the WCHS and explained the situation to the front desk and then transferred to the customer service manager who stated that they did indeed have notes that we were to be contacted and apologized for the inconvenience. I was also informed that they had already adopted the cat to someone else without calling me as promised. I was absolutely heartbroken as was my family who were waiting for Willow to come home. They apologized again and advised they would immediately hang up with me and contact the person who was listed for the dog.
They did contact the friend that was listed for the dog and apologized and she advised them she would be in as soon as her husband got off of work and she was off as well. They got there and immediately experienced rudeness from the employees as well as being told that the dog was “mean”, and as they did not know that she knew the person that had passed gave gross inaccuracies regarding the passing of the person that previously owned the dog. She brought her dog to meet the dog as well as her son and husband and they did wonderfully together. He took to them right away. She wanted to go ahead and take him but was told that there were no more appointments for same day adoption that evening. She said that was fine and she would come back tomorrow. She was callously told that they could not hold him and that he may not be there when she returned. She explained the situation and offered to leave a deposit or fill out the application while there and was told she would not be able to do that, and told to come back and if he was there that she could get him.
I am appalled at the lack of any type of communication and rudeness of employees at this organization. They took much more from me than an animal and made a time that was extremely difficult for many people even worse. I have always dealt with Cumberland Valley and have never been treated in such a manner. This has been a devastating experience for all involved. There is nothing in the world that can now make this situation right but again I have high hopes that the right individuals will see and acknowledge this information and make whatever corrections are necessary so that something like this does not happen again. There seems to be a huge disconnect and lack of communication and information between employees and managers, as well as just a general lack of caring.
I waited to post this until the dog was able to gotten from WCHS about an hour ago .