All hell broke loose in Southeast Missouri and the Bootheel after the article “Allegations of Kennett Humane Department gassing animals at Malden facility” hit the information highway. Texts, private messages, telephones, and social media pages blew up with the news.

Many animal lovers were in shock, some in disbelief, and others were just relieved that the truth was finally coming out. For many people in local rescue and shelter groups the news was no shock at all, but the fact it was all coming out into the open was.

There has been no question that the Kennett Humane Department has made great strides to improve their animal control outfit, nor had anyone ever slighted the department for the hundreds, maybe thousands, of animals that they have saved and re-homed over the past several years. And even though no one likes the reality that all open door animal organizations are many times forced to euthanize for space, even that wasn’t the issue that set folks into an uproar.

It was the gassing as the form of euthanasia, and the sheer numbers of animals involved, that sparked the roar of the crowd. The absolute denial of it all, coming from the Kennett Humane Department, only fueled the flames of outrage.

Animal Control Officer, Tena Petix, of Kennett Humane Department, did not deny that severely ill and injured animals or those that were considered dangerous, were euthanized. But when confronted with the number of Kennett animals that were shown on a 2013 gassing report from Malden’s own animal control department, Petix denied it flat out and claimed that the city of Malden was lying.

The 2013 report indicated that the Kennett Humane Department had sent 100 animals to Malden to be gassed.

Animal advocates and rescuers demanded answers. They wanted proof that the accusations against the Kennett Humane Department were valid, so Malden City Council complied with a request for documentation proving the number of animals they had gassed for Kennett.

From January 2013 until July 29, 2014, the City of Malden’s animal control facility gassed 138 dogs brought to them by Tena Petix of the Kennett Humane Department. Everyone is having a hard time believing they were all ill, injured, or dangerous.

Here’s a few of the official surrender and euthanasia tickets, signed by Petix herself. Kust click to enlarge.

Petix and supporters of Kennett Humane Society have cried foul and contended that there was no proof, but here it is in black and white.

Each ticket was completed, per drop off, by the Kennett Humane Shelter, and signed by Petix.

The amount shown on each ticket, divisible by 15 ($15.00 per dog), indicates the number of dogs being dropped off on the date indicated.

Deny that.

(This article was originally published by Gila Todd on, August 8, 2014)