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Three dogs wrongfully euthanized by the Escambia County Animal Shelter

It's happened again.
The Escambia County Animal Shelter has euthanized another dog by mistake.
This is the second time in less than a week and the third in less than a few weeks.
    
Back in August, the shelter accidentally euthanized a dog just hours before it was scheduled to be picked up by its owners.
The manager of the shelter, Delfi Messinger, was replaced shortly after that.
Then, last Thursday. the Escambia County Animal Shelter picked up a dog barking at some kids at the bus stop.
The owner handed over the dog and signed papers without reading them, including a statement of surrender that says the dog can be disposed of at the shelter's discretion.
The dog was put down about an hour later.
And the latest incident happened Friday.

Channel Three's Jenise Fernandez explains.

Because of this latest incident,  all euthanizations must have a veterinarian's approval.
In this particular case, a male pit bull was picked up as a stray.
After not being able to contact the owner, he was put down.
But the shelter says, there's no clear answer why he was euthanized.

When the Escambia County Animal Shelter picked up a male pit bull, by protocol, they scanned him for a microchip.
The shelter says they called the phone number assigned to the chip before he was put down, but it did not belong to the registered owner.
But the owner got an e-mail from the company that made the chip. When she called the shelter asking for her dog, she was told the bad news.

Waller Johnson
"I would think they'd have more of a double check system in place."

Waller Johnson has two grey hounds, Sonni and Patch.
Like most dog owners, he considers his pups a part of the family and would be devastated if something happened to them.
He's shocked to hear about the shelter's mistake.

"If a chip was found, I would think they'd hold off for awhile and phone number."

Noah Tomko's great dane mix, Mercy, is micro chipped.
He did that because he thought it would increase his chances of finding her if she ever went missing.
He says it's a shame the shelter did not try harder to find the owner.

"It's a little discouraging to be honest. you put all this extra money to get your dog chipped so it can be identified."

The pit bull was at the Escambia County Shelter for about a week before being euthanized.
He was considered a stray and deemed not adoptable.
The shelter says it's not typical policy to put down a dog who is micro chipped, but they're looking into the incident and will revamp its procedures.

And one thing the shelter did say was for all pet owners out there to make sure they have updated information on their micro chips.
Sometimes, they even get dogs who have micro chips that are not registered.
Reporting live in Escambia County, Jenise Fernandez, Channel Three News.