It's been quite a week. Most of my attention has been focused on Missouri's Proposition B....and I have one more post I am planning this week on the broader topic of puppy mills and commercial breeders (not necessarily synonymous terms) and then I plan to move onto my more traditional topic bases.
Because of all my focus on Prop B -- a lot of other stories have fallen through the cracks. I'm going to try to pick up some of those today in the roundup.
Cities/states and laws
Douglassville, GA is still discussing a new dangerous dog law for the city - and while the intent is not for it to be breed-specific, there is certainly support for breed specific laws there, so please stay on top of that situation.
Greenwood, AR is discussing the potential for breed-specific regulations in the city. "Pit Bulls" have accounted for 4 of the city's 20 dog bites over the past 2 years. Local residents seem to be speaking out against the prospective law.
A resident in Van, TX is pushing for a ban on pit bulls and Rottweilers in the community. Breed-specific legislation is against the law under TX law.
An interesting article from the Dayton Daily News - highlighting that under Ohio law, it is very difficult for people to get justice if they are attacked by any breed of dog other than a 'pit bull'. Under Ohio state law, the only one in the nation that is breed specific, there are heavy penalties for people attacked by 'pit bulls' - -however, there is little to help them out when other dogs attack. This is yet another reason why breed-specific legislation is not preferred, as good breed-neutral presentation will protect citizens regardless of what type of dog bites them. In Dayton, 83% of all dog bites involve non pit bull type dogs.
Pointe Coupee, LA is looking at breed-specific legislation that would include 10 breeds of dogs including several 'pit bull' breeds, German Shepherds, Chows, Doberman Pinscher, Boxer and Akita. The Parish is looking at this ordinance after a child was killed by three loose Boxers in the community a year ago. The family and friends of the boy, Michael Blaise Landry, have recently started a website in the boy's memory and hope to educate people on how to prevent dog attacks on children.
The idea of a breed ban in Kirksville, MO seems to be losing traction after residents filled city council chambers opposed to the proposed ordinance.
Dog Bites and attacks
A two year old boy in Carthage, MO was attacked by a 'pit bull'. The boy and his family were visiting the dog owner and the dog was kept outside. The man told the boy not to go into the back yard, but apparently, while unsupervised, the 2 year old boy did wander into the back yard where the dog attacked him. I don't know if the many knew his dog would be aggressive to the 2 year old, or whether he was just, in general, trying to protect the boy (since a 2 year old shouldn't be unsupervised around a dog ever) -- but the media and authorities down there are sure willing to blame the dog instead of all of the adults around that failed to supervise the child. "Pit Bulls" are already banned in Carthage.
Two Indianapolis people were attacked by a Belgian Malinois that was a retired police dog. The dog escaped from his handler and attacked the two people.
The folks in Luther, OK are concerned after a pack of more than 2o stray dogs killed a family's two small dogs.
A four year old Massachussetts boy was badly injured when he was attacked by a Anatolian Shepherd that was tied up on a leash inside the home.
The Sioux City Journal has a couple of reports of significant dog attacks in the community -- one involving a "husky-ish" dog that attacked an 18 month old boy, allegedly leaving him with a punctured lung, bruiesed kidney, a bleeding pancreas and tears in his stomach and groin. The boy was injured when he wandered into his neighbor's yard unattended. The second incident involves a German Shepherd killing a Shih tzu puppy. Two years ago Sioux City passed breed-specific legislation thinking that was the answer to their dog-bite problems, but, well, not so much.
A Halifax (UK) boy was attacked this week by a German Shepherd. In a separate incident, a four year old girl was attacked by a neighbor's Japanes Akita. The UK has had a breed ban for 20 years and during that time dog bites have continued to increase. A mother who's daughter will have permanent facial scarring after being bitten by a Springer Spaniel is demanding the law be changed because authorities tell her nothing can be done about the dog that bit her daughter because it is not a "dangerous breed".
The Dog Whisperer, Cesar Millan, presented to a crowd of over 7,000 people in Ontario last week -- however, he was without his trusty sidekick Junior. Junior, a 'pit bull' type dog, is banned from Ontario and the state government denied Millan's special request to allow Junior to enter the provence. Situations like this are another prime example of why breed-specific regulations fail because the state is at all worried about Millan's dogs (who clearly are not going to be a safety threat in the provence. Tim Hudak, Ontario's Conservative Party Leader, called the situation "pretty embarrassing. More on this story from Brindle Stick and again here.
Fifty two animals were rescued from an Odessa, KS home after being abandoned by the owner when the property was forclosed on.
A Washington Greyhound trainer is facing charges of animal cruelty after authorities found 33 dead dogs, and 4 near death, that had duct tape around their necks that was cutting off airflow.
Miami-Dade Animal Services is taking full responsibility for a Husky that was taken into the shelter and allowed to die while in their "care" because it was clearly sick and dehydrated but received no medical attention.
A good featur story on a volunteer at the KCMO shelter that has been working like crazy to help save the lives of dogs at the shelter.
Chris Rock lost a movie role when he "jokingly" defended Mike Vick - -the role was for an upcoming movie about Richard Pryor and Pryor's wife, Jennifer, found the 'jokes' not amusing...and thus requested someone else play the role of her husband.
Pics from the Orange County Register on a recent pit bull awareness day event.
Blog posts you must read
Choice -- by YesBiscuit! -- on how the wording change from a shelter "being forced" to kill animals and "choosing" to kill animals bring along very different connotations.
Tribute to Ginger - Brindle Stick takes a look at one dog that was negatively impacted by Ontario's breed ban. Frogdog Blog has additional info on the case which has gone back to court as an owner has spent 4 years trying to save his dog. This is yet another example of the law wasting countless resources on a dog (and owner) that are not, and never would have been, a problem in the community.
Boulder shelter kills dog while owners on vacation -- For the Pit Bulls has a story about a family that went on vacation and left their dog with a friend. The dog got loose and ended up at the shelter, and even though it was wearing multiple tags, the shelter killed the dog 5 days later when they were unable to reach the vacation family.
Proposition B Passes....what happens now? - -From PetDocsOnCall
National Animal Shelters Reform Week -- from Nathan Winograd
The True Story of Michael Vick's Lost Dogs - Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell has an interview with Jim Gorant -- author of the Lost Dogs.
Animal righs vs Animal Welfare -- and never, ever get the two confused -- Wisconsin Watchdog covers what is a topic that mysteriously eludes most politicians and media outlets.
I live, I breath, I vote -- Wisconsin Watchdog on the importance of being politically active
Jon Stewart, Pit Bulls and Media Hysteria - -a great blog posting from Change.org's Ledy Van Kavage
Pit Bulls: America's Dogs Help Wounded Warriors -- Change.org's Ledy Van Kavage talks about two pit bull therapy dogs that bring joy to wounded veterans at Veterans Administration Hospital in Topeka.
Failure is not our only option - Saving Pets talks about a shelter in Australia where the culture is not one of hope and potential, but conviction that failure is the only option.
Mad Men's Training Advice -- Bark magazine has an interesting story using a situation from the TV show Mad Men to show how positive reinforcement can help in training (dogs or people)
The Litmus Test - Wisconsin Watchdog looks at a recent rescue of 200 pit bulls from an Ohio hoarding incident and HSUS's role in the rescue -- and notes that "There are no permanent friends and no permanent enemies".
Helter Shelter - "Pet Overpopulation", the no kill conundrum and the animal welfare controversy -- Fully Vetted takes on the controversy over No Kill and how ridiculous the notion that no kill = hoarding is.