Adoption dispute draws protest outside Dodge County Humane Society

Published: Apr. 27, 2020 at 8:58 PM CDT
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A custody dispute involving a pet reaches a boiling point in Fremont. A disagreement between the Dodge County Humane Society and a couple who have a dog spread like a wildfire on social media. A large protest followed.

Ten-year-old Bessie became the center of attention and tension with protesters gathering outside the dodge county humane society and its director, Tamar Reed, inside.

Tamar Reed, Dodge County Humane Society said, “They’re trying to bully us and intimidate us.”

Three years ago the Humane Society adopted Bessie saying she’s spade. But appearing to be in heat, Jesse and Austin Knupp took Bessie to a vet and claims that’s where Reed repossessed the dog.

Austin Knupp, the dog’s guardian said, “They’re saying our son in law signed the original contract and since he wasn’t present with us he forfeited that contract by handing her over to us.”

Protesters demanded the Humane Society release, Bessie, to the Knupps and police arrived to keep the peace.

And Saturday two Fremont City Councilmen got involved in the conversation between the dog’s guardians and the Humane Society supervisor Savanah Reed.

“They shouldn’t be abusing their power and kind of throwing their weight around, that they’re councilman they can do whatever they want,” said Savanah.

One councilman sees it differently.

Brad Yerger, on Fremont City Council, said, “We were here to support the release of the dog, we were very peaceful and when we were asked to leave the premises we did.”

Because of those voice messages, emails, and social media posts, the Director of the Dodge County Humane Society says she closed the facility on Saturday for three hours and eight hours today.

Late Monday the Humane Society required Jesse Knupp sign adoption papers

“Our intent was never to keep the dog, never. Our intent was to have the dog looked at by a vet today,” said Reed.

As Bessie left the Humane Society the crowd of people let out a howl.

A dog goes home with support from many new best friends.

Fremont’s Police Chief Jeff Elliott tells us that despite officers responding to large gatherings outside the Humane Society Saturday and today nobody has been issued any criminal citations.

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