By Stephanie Rebman/NEMS Daily Journal
PONTOTOC – In just the past week, dozens of dogs have been reported missing in the Pontotoc County area.
Katie Elizabeth Jackson, founder and board president of Pontotoc County Animal Rescue and Shelter, said she has fielded close to 60 calls since Monday of people’s pets being missing.
“It’s getting really bad,” she said. “It’s the first time that I’ve been doing this that I’ve dealt with it getting this bad.”
Most of the calls have been from the city of Pontotoc and the county. However, two were from Union County, two from Houston and three from Houlka.
“Most of it’s been unaltered pets that people have let go outside to go to the bathroom and they disappear,” she said. “I’ve had a couple people report that someone had actually come in their house and taken them. But, it’s mainly been the pets haven’t been watched.”
Jackson said there’s nothing in common with each case, but many of the dogs missing are pit bulls.
“That’s what’s really throwing me off, because these people don’t know each other. There’s no connection to each other but their pit bulls are turning up missing,” she said.
Jackson said she always encourages people to contact their police or sheriff’s department and file a report. Also, inside the city of Pontotoc, an animal control officer may have picked up the pet, so they need to check with the city. Oxford and Tupelo shelters could have the pet as well.
A easy way to help your pet, she said, is to make sure it has your name and phone number on its collar.
“I ask if there was any kind of identification on the dog and the main answer I get is no,” Jackson said. “Even if the pet just wandered away, there’s no way for whoever would find it to get it back to the owner.”
Another way to keep your dog from roaming too far from the house is to spay and neuter, that way it’s more concerned with its family than mating.
Jackson fears people fighting dogs could be snagging pets off the street for that painful and deadly purpose.
“You wouldn’t hear about it so much if it wasn’t happening,” she said. “There’s a chance that some of these dogs may have been taken for that purpose. It’s a scary thing. It’s sad people think it’s OK to fight dogs for money or whatever.
“I hope and pray all 50 dogs I’ve heard about have just wandered off and will come back.”