Catastrophic Increase of Animals Dying in Shelters Under Ed Boks

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This chart shows the huge increase in the number of animals dying in the shelters since Ed Boks became General Manager. Dying in the shelter means animals that died because of disease, fighting, injuries or neglect. These numbers are in addition to the euthanasia numbers.

But this is nothing compared to the Catastophic increase in killing for "Other Animals." It is best not to be a hamster under Boks.

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24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fewer animals are coming in the shelter doors yet more are dying from illness and injury. More are being stolen, gone missing. The shelters are a mess. This is gross mismanagement and animal cruelty.

Anonymous said...

How can the Mayor stand by and let this happen? This is gross animal neglect.The ACTF busts people for letting them animals get sick and die. They need to bust themselves.

Anonymous said...

As fewer animals are entering the shelters, the number dying of illness and injury should go down, not up. This makes no sense. What is he doing? or not doing?

Anonymous said...

A 264% increase in the total number of animals dying from illness and injury, and no one thinks something is wrong? An extra 2,000 animals are dying. What is wrong with this City. This is not acceptable.

Anonymous said...

For decades the GM's "progress" reports have fluctuated wildly because there is no standardized system making each district report the numbers uniformly. Your numbers don't make any sense because the original reports don't make any sense and they never have.
The civil service-protected city workers report any numbers that they want as there's no way to check and no way for them to get in trouble (lose pay) if the discreancies are demonsrated.
All you need to do is fire the entire department and replace them with you, Pam, Dr. Jerry and Zsuzsa. Then no one will kill any rabbits orferal cats and you can all live happily ever after on a big animal farm.
Except any city worker fired will sue like that computer chick Donyetta (or whatever her name was). City workers almost never get fired and if they are squeezed out, they always sue and win a fat settlement.

Get real. Your efforts a a waste of your own time. You fool yourself if you think the mayor's career is over if a bunch of rabbits get killed.
People love the shiney, glittering new shelters, no one wants those rabbits or feral cats, but the situation is better than it was a few years ago, people are treated better at the new shelters and that's the important thing as far as 99.99% of the people are concerned.
You creepy weirdos will scream insane babble that no one uderstands regardless of who is GM. Of course Nathan will not be GM. Why would he wreck the good thing he has going by trying to change the City of Los Angleles. Kathy Riordan has been there, what, 20 years? What has she accompllished. Laura Beth has blackballed herself as far as ever working for the city. While she might be the most capable candidate, I doubt she could change anything, even if the mayor overlooked her criminal record and her tart comments.

How's that big county supe investigation of Mayeda going? When is her last day?

Get real.
Happy Holidays,

- Son of Naysayer

Jim said...

The commenter above thinks that Villaraigosa is immune from bad PR and that killing rabbits will not affect any voter's attention. That is bull.

Public opposition got rid of Greenwalt and Stuckey and will Boks soon.

Your other comments are well taken, but can apply to any City dept., and with like reasoning, the implication is that all is hopeless lost. Maybe we need a new mayor to rectify that.

Regarding Kathy and her influence. Imagine what would have happened had she not been on the Commission.

Ed said...

That argument cuts two ways. It means I was also wasting my time when I was defending Boks. Ed is sensitive to every word said about him. You assume the mayor is the only player in town.

Anonymous said...

Anything that could embarrass the mayor will affect him. The main job of everyone in the city is to make sure the Mayor is never embarrassed. A lot of animals dying from neglect while in the care of the city's shelters could be embarrassing if news gets to the real media.

Ed said...

I love it when Naysayer pretends to become rational for a moment and inserts some apparent good understanding between invectives. It is at times like these I think it might be Jim himself or the new Commisioner trying to stop opposition to Boks by saying opposition is useless. Or like the Borg would say, "Resistance is futile."

Naysayer"

"For decades the GM's "progress" reports have fluctuated wildly because there is no standardized system making each district report the numbers uniformly. Your numbers don't make any sense because the original reports don't make any sense and they never have."

What do you mean GM reports? My stats are from the current stats on the LAAS website, not from meaningless PR reports, although it does appear one can do a lot with statistics and make apparently radical progress when there was none at all.

Naysayer:

"Get real. Your efforts a a waste of your own time. You fool yourself if you think the mayor's career is over if a bunch of rabbits get killed. People love the shiney, glittering new shelters, no one wants those rabbits or feral cats, but the situation is better than it was a few years ago, people are treated better at the new shelters and that's the important thing as far as 99.99% of the people are concerned."

Me:

Why are you wasting your time reading my blog? It is not the mayor's career I am interested in, but Boks' career. If you think that a 100% or 200% increase in animals dying in the shelter even as impounds are going down would not create a firestorm, you are wrong. Although the mainstream media is not carrying it yet.

If the public did not care about the welfare of animals, it would not haved voted in a $200 million capital improvement proposition.

Naysayer:

"You creepy weirdos will scream insane babble that no one uderstands regardless of who is GM."

Me:

Why are you so seduously following my blog? Are you telling me you don't understand my numbers or charts? That speaks to your ignorance, not mine.

Naysayer:

How's that big county supe investigation of Mayeda going? When is her last day?

Me:

Remember, I said I would lay off Mayeda until done with Boks. Getting stinkos out takes time. The groundwork is laid. I just wanted to make sure Mayeda is not hired when Boks is fired.
Happy Holidays,

- Son of Naysayer

Anonymous said...

1. I am Son of Naysayer. Naysayer is someone else. Let's try to stay on the ball.

2. The GM used to issue quarterly statistic roundups called (I think) "progress" reports that listed and enumerated all the department's activities. The "progress" reports were never accurate.

3. Press for more better and care for the animals impounded (including reptiles) and continuing to press for spay/neuter. BTW, I don't think the city can afford to run even one full-time spay and neuter clinic anymore. Salary issues and compliance with state and fed (premise licenses, DEA #s, OSHA, etc.) make a city-run clinic almost impossible. Work needs to be contracted out. They had such a horror show with the company hired in the early '90s that I'd be surprised if anybody wants to revisit that mess. So instead of posting all your phony stats, work on an alternative spay/neuter program.

3. I waste a LOT of time on the Internet, how "seduously" [sic] I follow your blog is not the problem.

Ed said...

You assume spay/neuter is the silver bullet. Studies don't support that yet; some yes, some say no. Depends if we are talking ferals or housed cats, location, density. Etc. Putting effort into something I do not think is the answer is not something I want to do.

If Makkie is correct, you have to fix 70% to the population even. I think it much less. Even if we stabilized, the impounds would remain dead even.

I think the multitude of solutions are known, the problem is who can implement them given LAAS.

But we don't even know where the cats are, therefore we don't know how to commit resources. I do not see Boks at all interested in catographics.

I am not an expert on techniques of no kill--never will be. I do know when a manager is not solving the problems except by voodoo math and refusing animals, and we need to find one.

Philly is "apparently" making dramatic prgoress. I have talked to their director and the head of operations. They went from 80+% kill to 60% save in three years. Philly has a union but not civil service; they thought that an obstacle, but not insurrmountable.

Their success--in their eyes--is volunteers and engaing the community. Boks has not been able to do that. I am not sure he wants that or can do that. If you think the volunteer problem cannot be resolved, we may be lost.

Off site adoptions are a wonderful idea, but it is rare for a non-profit to place more than 4 cats on a weekend.They are the experts, they screen,let LAAS support them. If that cannot be done,we may be lost.

Boks has never publically articulated what he thinks the implementation problems are. He is not willing to admit he needs help.

I have talked to several GM's with various titels across the country. They do not like Boks or Nathan, thinking both are liars and assholes.

So, do we pick someone local? I don't think so unless they have a proven mastery of leadership and probably not another GM. Heisen does not, Macelero does not.

My concern is the next GM. I assume you are an insider who knows the problems. I focus on that because the animal community,due to ADL and others, focus on that.

I think the GM's salary should be raised to $225,000 or so so that we can hire some management genius to take on the problem. The SF GM makes that much money and Philly makes less--I think.

Even then we need people to select that manager, not an idiot mayor as vein (sp?) as Boks or that idiot Moore.

Boks knows what to do he just is not doing it and commits effort into meaningless PR and samll, sexy programs. He is vindicative and self-involved--but it seems all candidates are.

Why do you thonk spay/neuter the solution? What is your evidence?

Anonymous said...

Son of,

The Directors have always lied, some more than others. Boks here just takes the lying to a new level. He says he provides transparent statistics when they are not. You need a calculator, pen and paper to figure out total euthanasia, out alive rates. In his press releases, he only talks about "dogs and cats," probably because others and bunnies have never fared worse.

It will be difficult for the city to run their own spay and neuter clinics because of licenses. The employees are turning in the city to authorities. Some because they don't want to work and others because they just hate Boks so much. Exemployees are even turning in the city to authorities. It's a sick department.

Anonymous said...

I also don't think spay/neuter is THE answer. A national expert told me he did a privately-funded study of Los Angeles and it just won't solve the over-population problem. The people who will spay/neuter are not the backyard breeders. The people causing the over-population are not going to take steps even if they are available and free. But, I do think even incremental steps will improve the situation and reach out and educate. You've got to overcome cultural aversion to spending money on spay/neuter somehow.

Boks is replaceable. Good luck finding someone who has political savvy, the support of rank and file inside and the approval of the rabbit and feral cat communities.

I still maintain a city with the demographics of Los Angeles and with the future population's cultural make-up (no I am not a racist), it looks like no-kill can never work here.
You have my sympathy, and I also feel very sorry for all the poor, homeless feral cats, older ordinary-looking cats and dogs who have little or no chance of being adopted in this city.

- Son of Naysayer

Anonymous said...

On 11/24/2007 SON wrote:
For decades the GM's "progress" reports have fluctuated wildly because there is no standardized system making each district report the numbers uniformly. Your numbers don't make any sense because the original reports don't make any sense and they never have.

LAAS numbers are reported for the department as a whole. If and when animal records are provided, those same numbers can be duplicated and reported by shelter but I think it would be extremely difficult (and of little value) to break those numbers down by "district". I agree that numbers won't make sense when the original reports don't make sense however, I believe it is better to continue showing this rather than allow those numbers to be announced and/or published unchecked and unchallenged.

Brad Jensen
Cypress, CA

Boks = Death said...

I hate to digress, but re comment #1 -- animals are getting STOLEN?

Anonymous said...

Yes, animals are being stolen. Some just go missing and some escape. Those are categories. click here for stats

In 2003 I think they busted a pitbull fighting ring and impounded all their dogs. That night someone broke into EV shelter and stole the dogs.

I once saw an employee steal a bengal kitten. Someone got it as a gift then dumped it at the shelter. The employee instantly put it in the back room and didn't report it. She took it home that night. Maybe she sold it or kept it.

Boks = Death said...

Brad is right. If the numbers are false, that's on Boks too. If it's broke, why doesn't he fix it?

While I agree with Ed M. that 225K might bring in someone with a slightly competitive sense of management, even for the reported pittance of 165K, I think Boks should make the reporting accurate. Except of course that accurate reporting of the numbers could only hurt him.

My first instinct, upon seeing someone anonymously cast doubt on the numbers, is to think that this is probably someone who would benefit from the numbers' being murky. Old Rove strategy... S/he is counting on us not to want to think too hard. But the fact is it all comes back to roost at Boks' door. If the numbers are wrong WHY are they wrong?

Anonymous said...

Lied animal shelter is having the same problems. read on When animals dying in the shelter increased, they fired their GM.

They gave random drug tests to their employees and ended up firing 28. I bet if they did that in LA they'd have to fire 35% of the employees.

Anonymous said...

I don't know what the overall answer is. But one comment mentioned better volunteer programs. I'm guessing my experience was pretty typical.

In June I contacted both West L.A. and the North Central shelter and filled out volunteer applications. I still haven't heard back from North Central, despite the fact that I spoke directly to the Volunteer Coordinator the day I filled out the app, and despite the fact that staff members said they need help badly.

After hearing nothing from West L.A. for a couple of weeks, I called to speak with the Volunteer Coordinator. She was so vague and unwelcoming it felt clear she didn't need my, or anybody's help. She also kept urging me to go volunteer at another shelter. I could never get a firm date for an orientation, a prerequisite for volunteering. Finally I called Boks' office and asked them if help was needed. Miraculously, I then get a call from West L.A.

The orientation included an inaudible airing of some high school TV show that had a segment showcasing LAAS animals. Then Charla, the coordinator, gave some meandering explanation of the job that seemed completely off-the-cuff, including talking about her daughter for some reason. They brought in a couple of cats and dogs for us to pass around. And they gave us handouts that were completely disorganized and randomly collated. As other posters have mentioned, lots of programs with catchy names -- and no info on how to participate in them. Another volunteer told me he'd waited three months before Charla gave him an orientation date.

I came in the following week, held some puppies, got a t-shirt and that was it for Charla. If I ever asked her what I could do when I was there I got a blank look. She was only interested in Mobile Adoptions, and if you were volunteering at the shelter you were on your own. You couldn't walk a dog, even if you had one, or volunteered as a dogwalker at other rescues, until you took the dogwalking class. I never did hear if they ever scheduled one.

I went to training classes on Sunday mornings for a couple of months and was never even allowed to hold a dog's leash. I finally gave up, even though I KNOW those dogs and cats need help and love, because I had no way to give it to them. I now volunteer about 14 hours a week at another rescue and can walk and wash dogs, socialize cats and clean out litter pans to my heart's content. I wanted to do that at the shelter, I TRIED to -- but with the exception of one staff member -- I never even felt welcome in the building.

Anonymous said...

volunteer,

They wanted you to volunteer at another shelter because WLA doesn't need the help. The other shelters do. That's why Charla didn't give you any work. That's the one shelter that doesn't need help.

The volunteer coordinator is out on stress leave. You spoke to someone trying to fill in. Generally Heidi the volunteer coordinator gives the classes but she's on leave. She'll be gone a year. They can't legally replace her until she is gone an entire year so we just have people trying to fill in.

Charla is actually a good person, just too busy. They gave her more work but no more pay.

You have to take all those classes because of liability and insurance. Two employees were mauled severely and sued, won a lot of money so now the insurance company is making these classes mandatory

How about volunteering with a private rescue group?

Anonymous said...

I'm the volunteer.

As I said, I do volunteer with a private rescue group. Roughly 14 hours a week. But it's no-kill, and I had wanted to work, if I could, with animals who were in more immediate danger. But as you say, Charla didn't need my help.

I can understand if you like Charla personally. But my (and others') experience is what it is. Charla was unwelcoming and unprofessional. And I bet anyone who tries like hell to recruit volunteers would cry at the notion that the reason she was so offhand was because she had "enough" volunteers. They would also probably point out that just because she has enough today, that doesn't mean she will next week or next year. But the people she has alienated will stay alienated.

As for Heidi Huebner, I emailed her even before I contacted West L.A., at the suggestion of Scott Sorrentino. No response then, either. She didn't even bother to forward my email to anyone else to answer.

I also understand why the city feels it needs a dogwalking class to avoid liability. What is not explicable is not HAVING one for months at a time, while dogs sit in runs, going nuts and attacking each other. I know this because the private rescue I work at now has one of the dogs who was attacked at West L.A. And Heidi is not the only one who could give the class.

Charla may be a lovely person one-on-one. But she is in no way qualified to run a volunteer program. A volunteer shows up, you make him or her feel welcome, you give them something to do, and you give them more to do. You don't act as if they're annoying you when they ask if they can help. And if you're going to be away you designate someone who can help train and situate volunteers. That's basic. And as I mentioned, it was hardly just Charla who was unwelcoming. There was exactly one person in the place who was reliably pleasant, and who was happy ro give me something to do, a blonde woman named Kate.

And if other shelters need help so badly, why has North Central not called in five months? You're confusing well-meaning with well-qualified. The animals of Los Angeles deserve people who are both.

Anonymous said...

volunteer,

Maybe they should get someone else in charge of volunteers at WLA. They gave Charla too many new job duties. Personally, I feel Charla would be a better volunteer coordinator for WLA than the other employees there.

I too used to volunteer with a private nokill group. I wanted to volunteer where help is needed most. I too then volunteered for LA shelters. I live near WLA but volunteered at EV because they really need the help there.

It was so bad that I cried the first day watching people dump their pets, watching dogs maul each other to death, watching them drag dogs down the hall to euthanize.

Email ed.boks@lacity.org with your issues. Maybe he can do something. I've found that emailing other employees won't get you any response at all.

Volunteer said...

That was a kind and understanding response. However, I'm pretty sure Mr. Boks knows what's going on. He certainly knows animals are dying unnecessarily every day in his shelters.

From what I've read about him, here and other places, I think he doesn't want really capable volunteer recruiting, and motivated volunteers. If he let a bunch of really energized animal lovers inside his shelters how long do you think he would last?
Imagine people who truly love animals, who aren't afraid of being fired, and who can see and report what his policies are doing to actual dogs and cats they've come to love? It would be his downfall.

Anonymous said...

Things have certainly changed from when the last post was made, in case anyone is curious enough to stumble upon this post again.

Dog-training classes are held 2-3 times a month and as a previous poster mentioned, it is for liability reasons as well as the staff to see if one can really handle a dog.

There has been 1 case of thievery in 2008, it is mentioned in the West LA info sheet somewhere. Euthanasia is still high obviously but the shelter cannot be blamed for people who won't neuter/spay Nibbles.

Charla is a great person but often busy, though she still takes so much time out of her life to care for the animals, keeping a dog or two in her office if space runs out or touring with visitors when she has the time.

Volunteer sessions are held monthly though I wouldn't expect to learn much. It's a shelter, not NASA. If you know how cats and dogs react and have genuine affection, all you need to do is sign the paperwork.

-Cows