Change demanded after 47 animals put down in Petersburg

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - Animal advocates are demanding change at the Petersburg Animal Shelter after 47 cats and dogs were put down last month.

The animals were killed in a span of about two weeks, including kittens and puppies just weeks old. Now rescue groups are taking action, pushing city leaders to make policy changes.

A meeting at the Petersburg Regional Art Center Wednesday night was meant to discuss the problems and find answers.

"Don't be so tight with a dollar. Give a dollar or bring a bag of dog food. If you can't take an animal, donate food. Let's get enough food for them. Give them enough dollars and quarters so they'd be so overrun they'll be no excuse," said Mel Branch.

The Petersburg animal shelter has been under scrutiny for months.

"They've been having issues like this for years. It's because the place is too small.
They don't have enough workers. They don't have enough money," said Branch.

City Councilman Howard Myers has called upon a special advisory committee comprised of animal advocates to come up with some recommendations on how the city should change its laws concerning its animals.

It's a huge step forward for people like Jill Navary, who have been fighting for change in Petersburg for years.

"I think the people that work there are good people I think that they care and they definitely have concern and some compassion for the animals," said Navary.

But just having a heart for the animals isn't enough. City Council is set to hear from the committee next month.

"I just think you need a bunch of people to come together to show that we care so this won't happen again," said Pam Rosenkrans.

Copyright 2013 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved