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24-Hour Staffing of Kennels Suggested

Responding to the death of 35 pets in a July 4 kennel fire in Pasadena, Los Angeles County supervisors Tuesday ordered animal control officials to study requiring round-the-clock staffing in kennels.

Supervisor Mike Antonovich, who asked for the study, has pneumonia and was absent from the meeting. His staff issued a statement saying that while the Pasadena kennel was absolved of any blame in the fire, “it is quite possible that some of the animals could have been saved had a kennel attendant or other employee been on duty.”

County law prohibits anyone from leaving a dog unattended for more than 12 hours. However, the statement said, “at times, such as the Fourth of July, when large numbers of pets are boarded for the holiday, the potential for disaster increases dramatically.”

Bruce Richards, assistant animal control director for the county, said that his office already has received complaints from kennel owners about the increased cost of the proposed requirement and is studying mandating sprinkler systems in kennels as an alternative.

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