There are an estimated 150,000 stray dogs loose on San Antonio streets. It has become an everyday battle for Animal Care Services, leaving some neighborhoods to become impatient.
The Rolling Ridge Neighborhood, on the city’s northwest side, is just one example and for Rolling Ridge resident Ida Rojo, it became personal in January.
"He just came out of nowhere and attacked my dog," said Rojo.
Rojo’s dog was killed by a stray that was roaming the neighborhood. According to Rojo, that dog, pit bull, attacked a man, before killing her dog. The stray also followed Rojo’s neighbor, Kathy Brown, home, leaving her in fear, she said.
"I didn’t miss a step. I didn’t bat an eyelash. I didn’t say a word," said Brown, recalling her panicked walk home.
Brown said she made it home safely, but the event, along with what residents say has been an increase in a stray dog population, triggered a meeting Thursday morning. The group contacted their councilman, Cris Medina, after Rojo said ACS did not return her calls.
Medina arranged for a meeting with residents and ACS to discuss the problem.
“I think it’s long overdue," said Rojo.
"I’m just thankful that meeting is taking place,” said Rolling Ridge resident Skip Goodman. “I thought maybe they had forgotten about us."
"We are picking up more animals (and) making the streets safer, but it may not have happened as quickly as each particular neighborhood would have liked,” said ACS Director Joe Angelo.
Angelo added that ACS is trying to meet with each neighborhood that might have a stray dog issue in order to hear their concerns.
ACS said the problem is city-wide, with no specific area seeing more strays than others.
KSAT 12 looked for stray dogs in the Rolling Ridge neighborhood on Thursday and only came across one dog, which did not have a collar. As it turned out, that dog did belong to someone in the neighborhood.
According to ACS, stray dogs often do have owners, but can escape backyards.
The stray that attacked Rojo’s dog was an escapee from a nearby neighbor’s yard.
Residents in the Rolling Ridge neighborhood hope Thursday’s meeting is a step in the right direction towards curbing the issue.