Lola was playing up a storm in the Coyote Point shelter play yard, on a sunny Saturday afternoon, when shelter staff came to remove her for euthanasia. Lola had a heart condition. Volunteers asked for time to discuss options for Lola, having a hospice rescue in mind (hospice rescues are common in many shelters and one of the volunteers also volunteered for a rescue she was certain would take Lola as they had done with previous PHS dogs slated for euthansia).
Lola left the play yard, happy as a clam, trotting with a tennis ball in her mouth as shelter staff led her to her death. The volunteer who asked for time to discuss options for Lola was let go, absent any discussion with staff, after 15 years of being a volunteer in good standing. The 2nd volunteer involved was never asked for her experience of what took place. Three other volunteers resigned over the draconian style with which the shelter leadership mishandled the incident. Additional volunteers requested a meeting with the shelter leadership only to walk away dismayed by the way they were treated. Remaining volunteers suffered retaliation when the shelter leadership punitively cut back the number of hours they could volunteer at the shelter and limited the dogs they could work with, making an already bad situation for Coyote Point dogs, worse. The shelter Board, seemingly under tight staff control, wanted nothing to do with the matter.
Given a life was on the line, would it have hurt to explore all options for Lola?