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Tag: appeal

Fired firefighter walks out of appeal hearing

An Ohio firefighter who was fired for executing his two dogs walked out of an appeal hearing yesterday in which he was seeking to get his job back.

As a result, the Civil Service Commission dismissed David Santuomo’s appeal of his firing, the Columbus Dispatch reports.

Santuomo, 43, was waiting for the hearing to begin, but left after a television news crew set up a camera in the commission’s hearing room.

“He came here with the intention of going forward but changed his mind,” said Barbara McGrath, the commission’s executive director. The commission had agreed to postpone the original hearing in the fall and informed Santuomo that his appeal would be dismissed if he didn’t attend today’s hearing.

Santuomo was fired in July after being convicted of two counts of animal cruelty and one count of possession of a criminal tool. Prosecutors say Santuomo tied his two mixed-breed dogs to a pipe in his basement and shot them so he wouldn’t have to put them in a kennel while he went on a vacation cruise with his girlfriend. He dumped the bodies in a trash bin behind his fire station

He was sentenced to 90 days in jail and fined $4,500.

Autistic student’s right to service dog upheld

An autistic student’s right to bring his service dog to school was upheld by an Illinois appeals court last week.

The appeals court upheld a Monroe County court ruling that permitted Carter Kalbfleisch to bring his autism service dog, Corbin, to school. The Columbia School District had appealed the lower court decision.

Instead of following the lower court’s ruling, the district decided it could not meet Carter’s educational needs and sent him to the Illinois Center for Autism, agreeing to pay for his education there, but refusing to pay the cost of trasnporting Carter and the dog to school, according to the Belleville News-Democrat in Illinois.

 ”We’re happy that it went our way,” said Chris Kalbfleisch, Carter’s father. “Hopefully the school will change their direction with this. … Hopefully we can move forward and get our son back in school.”

“We hope they come to the realization that the law is the law and they have to follow it,” said Kalbfleisch’s attorney, Clay St. Clair. “Just because you don’t like a law doesn’t mean you don’t have to follow the law. We hope they do what they are supposed to do.”

School and district officials argued the dog would be disruptive, and possibly cause allergic reactions in other students.

The school district has the option of accepting the appellate court’s decision, or appealing the case to the Illinois Supreme Court.

Councilman’s seized dog stolen from pound

There’s some irony in here somewhere:

In June, Sioux City Councilman Aaron Rochester had his dog seized by authorities after the dog bit a man and was deemed vicious. Under the local dangerous dog ordinance, the dog has to be euthanized.

The councilman appealed Animal Control’s decision twice, and has until Aug. 16 to appeal again. But he said he has no plan to do that, according to an Associated Press story.

Many others came forward to try and save the dog, including someone who came forward with wire cutters, broke into an outdoor kennel at Sioux City Animal Control, and stole the councilman’s dog. No other dogs in adjacent pens were taken — only Jake, the councilman’s 3-year-old yellow Labrador.

Police say there are no suspects, and Rochester was adamant that he didn’t take his dog and has no idea who did.

To top it all off, Rochester is the councilman who led a successful effort last year to ban pit bull terriers from Sioux City, Iowa, saying they were too dangerous.

Violating the dog limit, she finds loophole

Margaret Bucher, the Wheeling, Illinois woman who was instructed to get rid of one of her five dogs because she was over the local dog limit, has wheedled her way out of the requirement.

A Cook County Circuit Court judge ruled Monday that she can keep her fifth dog, the suburban Chicago Daily Herald reports.

We first told you about Bucher back in early April, when she appeared before the village board, trying to get an exemption from the rule by bringing a letter of support from her mail carrier, and a letter ”written” by her dogs: “Please let us stay in our home. We are house dogs and live in a clean home. We have to depend on our owner to fight for us. She loves us very, very much.”

The emotional plea fell flat, so Bucher found a technicality.

Bucher was issued two citations, after the meeting, for violating the village’s four-pets-only rule and for not registering all of her dogs. She was facing daily fines of between $50 and $500.

Appearing in court for that, and representing herself, Bucher argued the village ordinance did not specify four pets per household, but instead four pets per person. In that case, she said, since she lives with her 43-year-old daughter, they should be able to keep all five dogs – a Pomeranian, two Maltese, a Shih Tzu, and a Maltese/shih tzu mix — or, for that matter, as many as eight.

After 35 minutes of hearing arguments from both sides, the judge sided with Bucher and advised village officials to rewrite the ordinance if it wants to limit households to four pets.

Bucher, 63, broke out into tears at the ruling. “I just screamed and I just ran and hugged everybody I could find to hug.”

Village officials, meanwhile are considering an appeal, or a rewrite. They’re also considering lowering the limit on pets to three per home in multifamily residential complexes, meaning it would impose a different standard on those who dwell in apartments, condominiums or townhouses.

A relieved Bucher was on her way Monday afternoon to to register her fifth dog, Gizmo, in her daughter’s name. “Gizzy is going to be so excited,” Bucher said. “We’re going to order a pizza. My dogs love cheese pizza.”

Pamela Anderson fights for India’s strays

After an appeal from Pamela Anderson the Indian Supreme Court has issued a ruling against killing stray dogs in Mumbai.

The former Baywatch star appealed to the authorities in India’s financial capital not to put down nuisance stray dogs, instead calling for them to be sterilized.

“It is well established that killing stray dogs is not a permanent solution to controlling their populations,” the former “Baywatch” star said in a letter to the municipal commission of Greater Mumbai, made pubic by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).

About 70,000 stray dogs are in India’s financial and entertainment capital and there are widespread concerns about the spread of diseases, including deadly rabies.

Anderson’s letter, which cited World Health Organization and Animal Health Board of India support for mass sterilisation, cam after a legal ruling here to destroy nuisance dogs.

Anderson’s stance was supported by the Mumbai-based charity Welfare of Stray Dogs, which has been carrying out mass sterilization of stray dogs since 1989.

India has so many dogs roaming its streets because of its high numbers of slum and street dwellers, who often keep the animals as pets, plus a large amount of garbage, which provides readily accessible food for scavenging mutts, according to an AFP report.

India’s Supreme Court ruled Friday that a dog can be put down only if it is rabid, mortally wounded or incurably ill.

Britain’s biggest dog faces uncertain future

  Samson, the biggest dog in all of Britain, faces being put down because his owners can’t afford a life-saving operation on his hind leg, the British press is reporting.
      Both the Mail and the Telegraph say Samson’s owners, Julie and Ray Woods, have issued a plea for help in paying for the surgery. Unfortunately, neither news organization providing any information on how one might go about assisting.
      The Woods say Samson ruptured the cruciate ligament on his left hind leg, and that they cannot afford to pay the 1,400 pounds needed for special surgery.
      “Samson is in crisis. Without the surgery it could end up being euthanasia. It really is quite desperate. We are very upset, we love him to bits,” Julie Woods is quoted as saying.
      Samson is a four-year-old Great Dane-Newfoundland mix. He stands 6-feet, 6-inches tall on his on his hind legs. One report says Samson has a 29-inch neck, paws the size of dinner plates and can hold a full-size football in his mouth. The Woods from Wyberton, Lincolnshire, bought Samson from an RSPCA center when he was six months old.
      Up to now the animal charity PDSA has helped to pay for Samson’s vet bills, but Julie said they cannot stretch to pay for the surgery. “‘PDSA have been brilliant because it has so far cost quite a lot of money, but unfortunately they can’t pay for such expensive surgery … We are just appealing to anybody who can help.”
      Samson isn’t the world’s biggest dog — that honor belongs to mastiff named Hercules from Massachusetts.

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