Henrico woman denied pet adoption because of her zip code


HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Henrico County woman who lives in the Highland Springs area said she was denied the opportunity to adopt a dog because of her zip code.

Ashley Tamber told 8News she reached out to a rescue organization in neighboring Sandston and was basically told that because she’s a resident of Highland Springs, she wasn’t qualified to adopt a dog.

“She let me know she doesn’t adopt to people here in the community where she has her business,” Tamber explained.

The email from the director of C.A.R.E., which stands for Capital Area Rescue Effort, reads, in part:

“I really don’t know a nice way to say this, but having grown up in Sandston and Highland Springs, I am not comfortable placing dogs our dogs in the area.”

The letter went on to explain that the crime rate in that community is high.

“I was just really taken back by that,” Tamber said. “There are some really great people in my community and it’s a shame to think they might not be able to get a dog.”

Vicki Powell is the director of C.A.R.E. who sent that email. She said she misunderstood Tamber’s request for a dog who could hang with Basil in the backyard. Powell explained she was concerned the potential adopted wanted a dog who would be left alone outside.

“It was just easier for me to say, you know, we don’t generally do that.’ Her profile pops right up, shows where she lives than to say, you know, we get concerned when people approach us and their first question is I’m looking for a dog to hang in the yard.”

Powell added that C.A.R.E. does adopt animals to the Highland Springs and Sandston area.

Both women said, in hindsight, they probably could have communicated more effectively.

Tamber happily adopted a dog from another organization and is moving on.

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