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Borough president gets ‘ruff’ response from animal shelter supporters

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CO-OP CITY -

Supporters of a controversial plan to put the Bronx's first animal shelter in Co-op City took aim at the borough president Tuesday, a day after he said he opposed the idea.

"Co-op City and the entire Bronx deserve an animal shelter," says Egidio Sementilli. "It's a shame that the borough president cannot deliver."

Residents say the Bronx is the only borough without its own animal shelter and low-cost veterinary clinic. So city officials proposed putting one at 2050 Bartow Ave. 

Then Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. said he was siding with residents who oppose that move.

"No. 1, the city didn't really consult with them, and so the recurring theme was that there was a lack of respect here," he told News 12 Monday. "No. 2, you look at the folks that live in Co-op City, for many years we've all been talking, and they have been talking about having a recreational facility."

And some neighbors of the proposed site previously told News 12 that they're not even allowed to own pets in the area.

But supporters say they garnered 1,000 signatures on a pro-shelter petition going door-to-door and another 5,000 online.

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