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Thursday, August 23, 2007

A Dog Day Afternoon

Sometimes I find it hard to keep the lid on things, and today is just one of those days where I just have to let it all out. To begin with, let me say that I have been an avid dog lover all my life, and I still consider myself one even after reading of a news event which involved the mauling of a woman in Washington by two Pit Bull Terriers while she slept in her bed. This was not the first story of malicious dog attacks against people children, and other animals that I have read recently, but only one of many that have taken up in the news lately. There have been several attacks right here in New Zealand recently and I have read several also having taken place in America and other parts of the world....again just recently. It has become more and more of a problem that some pet owners just DO NOT know how to care for their pets, and perhaps also there are not enough rigid laws intact to make it necessary for owners to provide adequate habitats for their pets to assure the public of their personal safety even while out taking a walk. I am not blaming the breed of dog in particular as I know vicious attacks have been perpetrated on individuals and animals by many other breeds other than just Pit Bull Terriers. But when it gets to the point that an individual is maimed for life or mauled to death, this is when we must ask ourselves, " Are we a mature and responsible human being, capable of owning and caring for a dog and adhering to the obligations that should be required for such?" And let's ask the politicians who legislate whether there are laws in our local areas which require dogs to be adequately domiciled when they are not on a lead or a restraint.

Just recently I had taken a walk down to the dairy about a block away from where I live and I was followed all the way home by a Pit Bull Terrier myself. I tried to stay "cool and collected" but quite frankly I was extremely uncomfortable, not knowing what this dog had on its mind. I tried not to show my fear, but I must admit I had the chills running up and down my spine. When I arrived at my home the dog stopped also and thought nothing of doing its business all over our lawn.....but all the while he did not take his eyes off me for one minute. I casually walked to the front door and got in without a major problem, but I really felt that it was an infringement on my rights. I called the Dog Control Center and was actually amazed that they were so UNSYMPATHETIC. The owner eventually found their dog the same day which is another story for another time, but the interesting thing was that I had met the owners who wound up at my front door looking for the dog. As it had turned out the Dog Control Center used no judgement but gave the owners my address and they came knocking at the door. They had just prior contacted the Dog Control Center themselves looking for the dog. They wound up giving me some cockamamie story that someone snuck into their yard during the night while they were sleeping and let the dog out. I've heard it all! Anyway I believe in animal rights but I believe in people and children's rights first and foremost. Let your voice be heard, and if you see strays wandering in your neighborhood call the Dog Control Center or the Police. You just might be instrumental in saving a life!

Here is the story I read yesterday of the incident involving the two Pit Bull Terriers in Washington.

Pit Bulls Break Into Home, Mauls Woman

Tue Aug 21, 11:27 PM ET

Two pit bull terriers broke into a house through a pet door Tuesday and attacked a woman in her bed, mauling her badly, a Pierce County sheriff's spokesman said.
The woman was able to grab a gun and try to shoot the dogs, then break away from the attack and lock herself in her car, where she called 911, sheriff's spokesman Ed Troyer said.
The woman, who was not immediately identified, was taken to a hospital in Tacoma, where she was listed in serious condition.
Officers planned to talk to the dogs' owner.
The pit bulls also killed a neighbor's Jack Russell terrier, which entered the house during the attack, Troyer said.
"The thought is that the Jack Russell heard noise in the neighbor's house, came in and was attacked by the dogs," Troyer said.
Firefighters responded first, locking the dogs in the house, treating the woman and calling for an ambulance.
Officers "had to pepper spray and fight the dogs until they were detained. We almost had to shoot them on site," Troyer said.
The dogs were taken to a Humane Society and will probably be destroyed, he said.
It was not immediately known why the dogs entered the house, whether the woman had dogs of her own or what set off the attack.