Pet society

Punishment for disposing of a pet dog’s body in a trash compactor

The BTPTC declined to answer questions about disciplinary action being considered for the incident and its procedures regarding such incidents. (PHOTOS: Lost and found animals in the Singapore Facebook group, Facebook)

SINGAPORE – Disciplinary action will be taken against a Bishan-Toa Payoh City Council (BTPTC) staff member and a service provider for throwing the carcass of a shih tzu pet into the trash compactor and failing to followed proper procedures, the BTPTC said.

In his response to Yahoo News Singapore, the BTPTC said it will strengthen measures to prevent the recurrence of such breaches.

The BTPTC declined on Monday June 6 to answer questions about the nature of the disciplinary action being considered over the incident, its procedures regarding such incidents as well as the identity of the service provider.

“The Bishan-Toa Payoh City Council is deeply saddened by the plight of the deceased pet dog, Cindy. We have visited Cindy’s family to express and offer our apologies, sympathy and assistance.”

The incident came to light following a Facebook post on May 26 by the 13-year-old dog’s owner, who claimed the microchip shih tzu died following a ‘mishap’ on the bridge empty of block 214 Lorong 8 Toa Payoh a day earlier. . The owner did not specify in the message.

“We were all at work so we didn’t know she was missing until after we got back,” the owner wrote in the same post, which has been deleted.

While searching for the missing shih tzu after 6.30pm on May 25, the owner discovered the dog’s collar, which bore his name and license and relevant contact details, on the empty deck.

The owner then received a phone call and a photo, time stamped at 1:55 p.m., of the dog’s body on the empty deck, with the collar next to it.

“We later learned from the (Essential Maintenance Services Unit) that the (BTPTC) had been informed earlier about the body and (he) had been taken. But we did not know where,” the owner said.

The owner called the BTPTC the next morning and ‘heard the horrible news that Cindy had been thrown into a trash compactor’ as ‘no one claimed the body’.

“With no calls (to family or authorities), directions or signs of where to retrieve her, a window (period) of six hours was enough for a council officer to decide that a compactor of trash was the right place to dispose of our dog,” the post added.

“Cindy was family to us. We let her down by not bringing her home to rest. No animal deserves to be treated like a roadkill.”

A complaint was later filed with the Animal & Veterinary Service (AVS), a cluster under the National Parks Board (NParks), about the incident. Yahoo News Singapore has contacted AVS for comment.

Aarthi Sankar, executive director of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), said the SPCA spoke to the owner on the phone a day after seeing the message.

“Authorities should verify if said animal is a community animal or a pet before disposing of it. This can be done by scanning microchips or checking any visible details such as a collar,” Sankar said. .

In this case, the owner of the animal should have been contacted by the authorities and made a report to them, she added.

Under relevant guidelines issued by the authorities, city councils must refer those cases with clear signs of pet ownership and the discovery of animal carcasses showing signs of exposed wounds or bleeding found in areas of the Housing & Development Board (HDB) at NParks for further investigation.

Apart from the areas maintained by the town halls, the National Environment Agency (AEN) is responsible for clearing up animal carcasses in public spaces. Members of the public can call the NEA hotline at 1800-2255-632 to report such sightings.

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