It's been a heck of a year at the KC Dog Blog. Thanks to everyone who is a regular reader, commenter, participant, and sharer of the information on this blog -- whether you read the information here, or follow the blog on Twitter or Facebook. You all make this blog what it is and thank you for your ongoing support.
Below are the 10 most popular blog posts from 2012 -- based on information from Google Analytics.
1) On December 6, word came out that authorities in the community of Sikeston, MO were rounding up pit bulls from their community and taking them to the local shelter. The shelter director there moved 30 dogs to other shelters to make room for the expected roundup. Later reports showed a discrepency between what city officials said their intent was, vs what was reported (by multiple sources) -- and many believe the city backed down after more than 1000 letters from Misssouri Residents were sent. Either way, this story was the #1 most popular story on this blog this year, and the subsequent update was #2.
2) Lennox, the dog, is dead -- the power of Channeled Passion -- in Belfast, Northern Ireland, a dog named Lennox was seized from his owners for being an illegal American Pit Bull Terrier. The owners fought for 2 years to save Lennox's life -- but Lennox was killed by the local authorities. There was anger from around the world -- and it is this channeled anger at owned family pets being killed by public officials unnecessarily that is a product of the change in how pit bulls are viewed around the world -- as pets.
3) Breaking down the numbers on last night's lost vote in Miami-Dade -- Miami-Dade has one of the longest-standing bans on pit bulls in this country, and local officials took the issue to a vote in August to see if the ban should stay. The vote to repeal the law failed, but was always destined to. People in Miami haven't seen a legally owned pit bull in their community in more than 20 years, so their image of the dogs isn't one based in reality, but only on what they see from the media. However, the longer voter education efforts went on, the more people who got on board with the repeal, meaning that knowledge can overcome ignorance in this fight. Prior to the law going to a public vote, it nearly was forced upon them by the state legislature -- and should have been, as much of the initial law was built on inaccurate information.
4) Identifying Mixed breed dogs is easy -- This blog post promoting a survey by Maddie's Fund to see how effectively experts can identify dog breeds compared to DNA testing was the 4th most popular blog post of the year. The results of the study are here.
5) Shooting the messenger -- This was some commentary regarding the ongoing debate between the Center for Consumer Freedom and the Humane Society of the United States and the reality that when CCF attacks HSUS, HSUS NEVER disputes their claims, only points out what CCF stands for.
6) Hidiing behind the word "adoptable" -- earlier this year, Springfield, MO was claiming that the shelter had been operating for nearly 4 months as a "no kill" shelter. However, further looking at what is really happening shows that the community shelter doesn't even attempt to adopt out any animals, and actually refuses to allow 'pit bulls' or feral cats to leave the shelter alive -- and just simple calls them "Unadoptable" and kills them. So while the shelter was calling themselves "no kill", they were declaring nearly 40% of their shelter population "Unadoptable" and hiding behind the word. That's not what no kill is.
7) Compassion (and have we lost it when it comes to people) -- My wife and I came across a young man who was distraught over the unfortunate death of his dog that got loose and was hit by a car -- and I was saddened to think that of how judgmental the animal welfare community could be to a man in this situation, instead of sympathizing with him for this loss.
8) Breed Specific Law in Ohio is no more -- Ohio has for years been the only state in the US in which specific breeds of dogs were targeted under state law (whereas 13 states prohibit the practice of targeting specific breeds). In February of this year, the state law was changed to target dogs based on behavior, not breeds.
9) Pit Bull Facts/Myths Infographic -- reposting this infographic from 1-800- Pet Meds was the 9th most popular post of the year.
10) Are shelters euthanizing the wrong dogs for aggression -- a Forbes interview with Ian Dunbar on dog bite inhibition sparked this story.
Thanks everyone for an outstanding year. More year end follow-up to come.