Tag: bucks county
Police suspected a black mixed breed dog they were calling Lady — found last week with her eyes dangling out of her sockets in a parking lot in Bucks County, Pa. — had been struck with a baseball bat.
Since then – thanks to encountering some kinder humans — Lady has received veterinary care, a temporary home from a police dispatcher who overheard the call, and, this week, a reunion with the family whose home she escaped from.
Now, the 7-year-old dog who likely will never see again is being called by her real name again — Dusk.
“We’re happy to have her back,” Marie Waligorski told Phillyburbs.com. “We never expected to get her back this way.”
Dusk escaped from the family’s fence yard four days before she was found in a parking lot, just a few hundred feet from the family’s home in Bristol Township.
The citizen who found her called police Friday morning, and Jessica Finnell, a Bucks County emergency dispatcher listened in.
The caller said he found a dog with both eyes hanging out of the sockets. When he went on to say the dog was alive, Finnell contacted the animal control officer retrieving the dog and urged him not to let her be put down. And she offered to take the dog into her home in Warminster.
At CARES, an animal clinic in Middletown, a veterinarian put Lady’s eyes back into their sockets, but her left eyelid had to be heavily stitched to keep the damaged eye from falling out again. The vet found multiple skull fractures, but no injuries that would suggest she’d been hit by a car. Finnell was told it’s likely someone hit Lady in the head with a bat.
After Lady received medical treatment, Finnell took her home for the weekend.
“She is phenomenal,” she said Monday night. “She is amazing. She is unbelievable. I totally fell in love with her.”
Finnell also started a ChipIn fund to cover Lady’s ongoing medical care, which has raised close to $3,000.
Finnell brought the dog back to the veterinary clinic yesterday, where she was reunited with her family. Dusk belongs to Waligorski’s son, William Schilling, who adopted her as a puppy when living in Tennessee.
“She was excited, tail-wagging. She seems happy that they were there,” said Finnell, a single mother of two. “I’m happy for her. I miss her like crazy, but I’m happy she is back in her home and can have some of her normal life back.”
(Photo: Lady/Dusk and Finnell; by Rick Kintzel / Phillyburbs.com)
Posted by jwoestendiek October 24th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, baseball bat, beaten, blind, bristol township, bucks county, cares, chip in, chipin, cruelty to animals, dangling, dispatcher, dog, dogs, donate, dusk, emergency, eyes, fund, jessica finnell, lady, parking lot, pennsylvania, pets, reunion, sockets, struck
But, with one warning memo from the Bucks County Department of Health, it has become a little less of all those things.
This summer, the Bucks County Department of Health sent a letter to New Hope restaurants, notifying management that dogs are not permitted in outdoor dining and bar areas where either food or drinks are prepared, according to Phillyburbs.com.
And most restaurants in town– at least those that prepare food or, more commonly, drinks outside – seem to be heeding it.
“Everyone’s in an uproar,” said the owner of Martine’s RiverHouse Restaurant & Bar, one of the restaurants that says they are not subject to any heightened enforcement of the old law.
“I feel like New Hope is such a dog friendly place that it’s definitely going to hurt business,” said the restaurant’s manager, Chrissy Mertz.
At places like The River’s Edge, an outdoor patio and bar at The Landing restaurant, bartender Joe Call called it “a shame. It’s like the end of an era … “We’ve always been dog friendly, now we’re just not allowed to be.”
The no-pets policy has always been in effect, said Bucks County Environmental Health Director Bill Roth. After realizing a number of restaurants in New Hope were violating it, a letter was sent by the health department to all borough restaurants to remind managers of the policy.
The policy does not apply to service dogs.
Managers for Martine’s RiverHouse say they and Bitter Bob’s BBQ are excluded from the no-dogs-allowed regulation because all food and drink, though they may be served outside, are prepared inside.
(Photo: A dog and his human enjoy lunch at Bitter Bob’s BBQ in New Hope; by Kim Weimer / Doylestown Intelligencer)
Posted by jwoestendiek August 1st, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bars, bucks county, dining, dining with dogs, dog friendly, dogs, drinks, food, health department, memo, new hope, outdoor dining, pennsylvania, pet friendly, pets, preparation, restaurants, warning
Or maybe an entire pack of them.
School districts being bureaucracies, though – often quicker to look for reasons why they can’t do something, rather than actually trying something new — that doesn’t happen too often.
But in Bucks County, Pa., dogs are turning up in more and more classrooms, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
At Holland Elementary School in Bucks County, a 140-pound Rhodesian ridgeback named Kicho shows up regularly as part of a reading program.
“Sometimes, I get jittery inside when I read, but not with Kicho,” 9-year-old Conner Weinberg said. “He’s very kind and calm. He’s my friend. I think of him as my own dog.”
Kicho is one of a several dogs that have become beloved classroom companions, in Council Rock, three other Bucks County school districts and a private school, according to the Inquirer report.
The program was founded five years ago by Wendi Huttner, a Bucks County trainer and breeder of Labrador retrievers, and Deborah Glessner, a retired Council Rock School District librarian. Their nonprofit organization, Nor’wester Readers, now fields 34 teams of dogs and handlers who make weekly visits to classrooms in the Council Rock, New Hope-Solebury, Pennsbury, and Bensalem districts and to the Center School in Abington.
The basic idea of the reading program — much like the one Ace took part in with Karma Dogs – is to give children “positive reinforcement; they get the affirmation of these big brown eyes, a wag of the tail, and a kiss on the cheek,” Huttner said. Children who may feel shy about reading in front of teachers or peers can open up to a dog.
“When you are reading to your teacher, your parent, your uncle, or your librarian, and you don’t know the right word or you mispronounce a word, you are corrected,” Huttner said. Dogs, however, “are not judgmental,” she said. “There is a child in just about every class that nobody else can reach, but a dog can. They have magic. . . . It’s a wonderful thing to see.”
At Council Rock’s Richboro Middle School, Jillian, a retriever (pictured above) and her handler, Nan Muska, visit children with severe cognitive deficits who are getting training to help them cope with daily living, along with some others who have multiple disabilities and are largely nonverbal.
“My students light up,” said Tim Qualli, the school’s multiple disabilities support teacher. “They really enjoy being with her.”
(Photo: Tom Gralish / Philadelphia Inquirer)
Posted by jwoestendiek April 4th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bensalem, bucks county, cognitive, council rock, dog, dogs, holland elementary school, kicho, learning, new hope, nor'wester readers, pennsbury, pennsylvania, pets, programs, reading, reading to dogs, rhodesian ridgeback, richboro middle school, school districts, schools, solebury, students, teaching, therapy, wendi huttner
Dr. Priya Punjabi told Phillyburbs.com that a large animal could scare or upset her patients — though the couple with the guide dog were the only ones in her Bensalem office when they arrived. The doctor also said she is afraid of dogs.
Lat week, Joseph Cichonski, 58, who is visually impaired, accompanied his wife to Punjabi’s office, where she was scheduled to receive a physical.
Cichonski said his guide dog, Hero, a golden retriever/Lab mix, was lying calmly at his feet in the waiting room when the doctor approached and told him pets weren’t allowed in the office.
“We simply asked him to step outside,” the doctor explained later. “I have my rights and my phobias, too.”
“I told her that it’s not a pet, it’s a guide dog, but she still said I couldn’t have him in there,” Cichonski said.
Cichonski said he and Hero stepped outside the office because he didn’t want to cause a scene. His wife, who was told she wouldn’t be treated while the dog was in the office, also left.
The Cichonskis called police, who interviewed the parties involved and filed a report. Cichonski said Wednesday that he’s exploring his options.
“I’m not trying to cause a fuss,” he said. “I just want to let people know that things like this are happening and I’d like to prevent them from happening to other people with disabilities.”
Rocco Iaculla, an attorney with the Disability Rights Network of Pennsylvania, said the doctor’s actions violated the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“You cannot exclude service animals except in very specific situations,” he said. “Unless the animal is out of control or not housebroken or someone nearby has a severe allergic reaction, you must permit them in any area that the public is permitted. It has to be more than someone feeling uncomfortable with an animal present.”
(Photo: Kim Weimer / Phillyburbs.com)
Posted by jwoestendiek August 11th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: americans with disabilities act, animals, bensalem, bucks county, denied, disabilities, disability rights network, doctor, dogs, fear, guide dogs, hero, joseph cichonski, pets, police, priya punjabi, report, service dogs
Kane, a 10-year-old American bulldog was found alive in Bucks County, Pa., as we reported yesterday, but had to be euthanized.
On Tuesday, Kane’s owner, Paul Bevan-Xenelis, the former superintendent of the Doylestown Country Club’s golf course, was arraigned on animal-cruelty charges. He’d adopted the dog about five months earlier as a pet for his family.
Doylestown Township Police Chief Stephen White told the Philadelphia Inquirer that he found the case “mind-boggling … I don’t know how that kind of cruelty gets into somebody, but this is not a mistake. When you shoot a dog 30-plus times and then leave the dog to suffer, it’s just nuts.”
Bevan-Xenelis, 39, told police that the dog had become aggressive and had bitten a coworker. He said he had shot the dog only once and thought he had killed it.
His defense attorney, David Knight, said of Bevan-Xenelis, “He’s a little upset … This is all new to him. He’s never had a problem with the law.”
Bevan-Xenelis was fired last week from the country club. He had worked there 10 years and is married with two children, 9 and 6. The police chief said said it appeared that Bevan-Xenelis had been keeping the dog at work with him because he did not want it around his family.
Police were called to the club at 9 a.m. July 24 and found Kane lying beneath a fence behind a maintenance building.
Anne Irwin, executive director of the Bucks County SPCA, said that because of the extent of the dog’s injuries, there was no choice but to euthanize him.
Police confirmed that Kane had bitten a country club employee two days earlier.
Kane had been evaluated as gentle and child-friendly when he was adopted from All4Paws Rescue Inc. of Chester Springs, said director Kristen Schlichtig.
Bevan-Xenelis had been carefully screened before the adoption was approved, she added. Neighbors vouched for him and reference and background checks were conducted, Schlichtig said.
“This has been a nightmare,” she said. “We did nothing wrong, but I have to live with the fact that I handed this guy the leash. I’m not even sleeping.”
(Photo by Larry King / Philadelphia Inquirer)
Posted by jwoestendiek August 3rd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, all4paws rescue, american bulldog, animal cruelty, animals, anne irwin, bite, bitten, bucks county, bucks county spca, charged, country club, cruelty to animals, dog, dogs, doylestown, doylestown country club, euthanized, kane, kristen schlichtig, paul bevan-xenelis, pets, poisoned, police chief, shot, stephen white, superintendent
A golf course superintendent in Bucks County, Pa., has been charged with shooting his American bulldog 32 times behind a building at the Doylestown Country Club.
Paul Bevan-Xenelis, 39, of Quakertown, could spend up to five years in jail and pay as much as $10,000 in fines if convicted of charges of cruelty to animals and owning an unlicensed dog, Phillyburbs.com reported.
“To shoot a dog that many times and leave it, to me, that’s just shocking,” said Stephen White, Doylestown Township police chief. “It’s unspeakable cruelty.”
Doylestown Country Club president Joseph Paul said in a statement last week that club leaders were “extremely disturbed” by Bevan-Xenelis’ alleged actions, and that he has been fired.
The dog, named Kane, was found tied to a fence near the maintenance shed at the country club on July 24. The dog, about 10 years old, was alive, but “in distress” when police arrived.
Police said Bevan-Xenelis tied the dog to the fence the night of July 23 after it bit a co-worker. The next day, he returned to the country club and shot the dog with a pellet gun, police said.
The dog was taken to the Bucks County SPCA, where he was euthanized, according to Anne Irwin, the agency’s director.
Bevan-Xenelis allegedly told police he shot the dog only once with a .22-caliber pellet gun, but the SPCA removed eight, .22-caliber pellets from Kane’s body.
Police said an SPCA examination of Kane’s remains showed the dog had been shot no fewer than 32 times.
Bevan-Xenelis had Kane for six months and told police he adopted the dog from a rescue in the Philadelphia area. He said he kept the dog at work because he didn’t feel safe keeping him at home.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 2nd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: american bulldog, animal cruelty, animals, arrest, bucks county, bulldog, cruelty to animals, dogs, doylestown country club, doyulestown, euthanized, fired, golf course, kane, owner, paul bevan-xenelis, pennsylvania, pets, philadelphia, rescue, shelter, shoots, shot, spca, superintendent, terminated
A Pennsylvania appeals court ruled Tuesday against a Bucks County man who had sought food stamps to help feed his dog.
James Douris, 55, a disabled and unemployed veteran who lives in the Philadelphia suburb of Newtown, said he relies on his dog to pull his wheelchair and fetch items for him. Because of the dog’s work on his behalf, it should be considered a dependent member of his household, he argued.
The appeals court didn’t buy it, upholding a decision by the state welfare agency denying him additional support, the Associated Press reported.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 8th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, appeals, benefits, bucks county, court, disabilities, disabled, dog, food stamps, james douris, news, newtown, ohmidog!, pennsylvania, pets, unemployed, veteran, welfare
County commissioners in Bucks County, Pa., are unanimously in favor of establishing a dog park at Core Creek Park in Middletown — but not in agreement over how much it should cost.
While all county commissioners support the concept, one is concerned by the estimated cost, set at $350,000 by county Parks and Recreation director Bill Mitchell.
“That’s way too much money,” said Commissioner Diane Marseglia. “I hope in the future we can have talks about scaling it back. I am completely confused about that cost estimate because the last price I thought I heard was about $100,000 and I thought that was too much.”
The 2.6-acre dog park is planned for near the Tollgate Road entrance of Core Creek Park, next to the 24-hour fishing spot on Lake Luxembourg, according to Phillyburbs.com.
Mitchell said the commissioners could vote to send the project out for bids by mid-September and that it could be finished by the end of the year.
Mitchell said dog park users will have to register and pay a yearly membership fee. The park will include a 2-acre fenced-in area for larger dogs (more than 25 pounds) and a 0.6-acre area for smaller dogs (25 pounds or less).
“When I was young, you could take a dog to an open field and let it run, but with all the development, those open fields are less and less,” said Newtown Township resident Patrick Flanigan, who has helped collect about 1,000 signatures on petitions in support of the dog park.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 12th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: bucks county, commissioners, core creek, costs, county, dog park, dogs, lake luxembourg, langhorne, middletown, off-leash, parks, pennsylvania, pets, unleashed
Reports are circulating that a small dog swimming in a lake at a Bucks County, Pa., park was pulled under by a snapping turtle and eaten.
Whether that’s what really happened or not, the dog was never seen again, and its owner was reportedly so distraught that an ambulance had to be sent to the park to sedate her, according to the Bucks County Courier-Times.
The paper quotes a township employee, who didn’t want to be identified, as saying a dog was killed by a snapping turtle about three weeks ago in Falls Township Community Park.
The employee said the dog was off its leash, against park policy, and a ball was thrown into the lake so the dog could retrieve it. The dog supposedly never came back.
Park security supervisor Ralph Connor said he’s heard the story, but hasn’t been able to confirm that it happened. ”There are plenty of snapping turtles in that lake and some pretty big ones,” he said, holding his arms about a foot apart to indicate the size.
Falls police said they did not respond, or receive a report about the incident, which reportedly took place about three weeks ago. Falls Manager Peter Gray said he is looking into the alleged attack: “We will be talking to staff members to try and get to the bottom of it,” he said.
On July 19, the newspaper reported, a member of its staff was on the banks of the lake near the dog park and was warned by a park ranger not to let the dogs venture to far out into the lake. The ranger said there had been reports that a woman had her toe bitten off by a snapping turtle and another woman lost her dog to one.
In the absence of official confirmation or denial, the story — suburban myth or not — seems to be taking on ”Loch Ness monster proportions,” the newspaper said. The owner of the dog has not come forward.
Large signs at the park say swimming and wading are forbidden, and dogs are only permitted in the water along the shore, and while on a leash.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 6th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: bitten, bucks, bucks county, community park, dog, dog park, eaten, falls, falls township, killed, lake, loch ness, monster, myth, park, pennsylvania, pulled, snapping, toe, turtle, under, water