During an inspection of their car at the border, the Wilcken family, of Waterloo, Ontario, handed their dog over to customs officials, who placed Ash in a crate.
As she was being returned, she pulled her head out of her collar and ran from the inspector holding her leash.
Customs officials apologized for the incident, and have been searching for the dog, a Jack Russell-pug mix, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The family drove on to Atlanta, but plans to return to Detroit on their way back next week and check shelters.
“Everyday, our son says something about that dog. I remind him of the nice moments we had with her. … We have two presents on the tree for Ash,” said Ana Wilcken.
The family has received dozens of messages of support at the address they set up in hopes of finding their dog – email@example.com – but none with information about the dog’s whereabouts.
Employees at the city animal-control shelter said they they had not seen the dog, adding that none of the dogs now in the shelter will be euthanized until Jan. 7, because the shelter is on a holiday schedule.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 28th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, ash, border, canada, crossing, customs, detroit, dog, dogs, help find ash, inspection, jack russell, lost, missing, mix, pets, pug
The man who, by his own count and admission, killed at least 70 sled dogs — some of which lingered in pain after he shot and slashed them — was sentenced to three years probation yesterday in British Columbia.
Robert Fawcett, 40, said the sled dog tour company he managed in Whistler ordered the cull, which came to light after Fawcett filed a workmen’s compensation claim stating that carrying out the orders had caused him post traumatic stress disorder.
As part of an investigation, 54 dogs were unearthed and examined, though estimates were that as many as 100 were involved.
Yesterday, Judge Steve Merrick ruled that Fawcett had the “best interests” of the dogs at heart when he culled the pack near Whistler after a slump in business following the 2010 Olympic Games, the Globe and Mail reports.
Fawcett was not charged with killing the animals — that’s, unfortunately, legal — but with “causing unnecessary pain and suffering” to nine of the animals, namely those that lingered after he wounded them, and, in some cases, were thrown into graves before they died.
Graphic testimony at Thursday’s hearings left some in tears, and Judge Merrick’s ruling was slammed by the British Columbia SPCA.
Marcie Moriarty, general manager of cruelty investigations for the BC-SPCA, said Fawcett “basically walked away,” and, through his injury claim, “he was paid taxpayer dollars in compensation for committing the crime.”
“We put forward strong evidence that animals suffered, and that this occurred over a few days,” Moriarty said. “When you look at other animal-cruelty cases in Canada … I think the sentence here is not reflective of what Canadians feel.”
The defense recommended no jail time for Fawcett, who they noted was carrying out orders when he began culling the herd at Howling Dog Tours, the owners of which had put an “absolute freeze” on spending.
In a statement, read in court, Fawcett described killing Susie, who was the mother of his family’s dog. He described what he called “execution-style” killings, in which he wrestled some of the dogs to the ground and stood on them with one foot to shoot them. He described one dog who survived the first bullet, and how he had to climb into the grave in which he had tossed the dog to finish the killing.
“I will never stop feeling guilty for the suffering that the dogs endured that day. I feel like part of me died with those dogs,” Fawcett’s defense lawyer, Greg Diamond, quoted his client as saying.
The defense supplied a list of 30 character references to the judge that described Fawcett’s dedication to the dogs.
The prosecution didn’t push for the maximum sentence — five years in prison — and noted Fawcett had no criminal record. Crown lawyers emphasized that he was charged in connection with the suffering of only nine of the dogs, not with the mass euthanization.
“Many dogs suffered from the reckless acts of Mr. Fawcett. However, it’s important to bear in mind that he has not been convicted of and is not being sentenced for euthanizing sled dogs generally,” said Crown lawyer Nicole Gregoire. “This is not a sentencing of the sled dog industry, or a discussion of the morality of the euthanization of sled dogs. The fact is that whether the court and the public like it or not, it is lawful to euthanize animals.”
The killings occurred in April, 2010. The bodies of the dogs were exhumed, after the ground thawed, in May, 2011. They were reburied at a memorial ceremony earlier this month.
(Photo: By Darryl Dyck / The Canadian Press)
Posted by jwoestendiek November 23rd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, british columbia, buried, canada, charges, claim, company, compensation, cull, dogs, euthanasia, exhumed, howling dog, investigation, pain, pets, post traumatic stress disorder, probation, robert fawcett, sentence, shot, slashed, sled dogs, spca, suffering, three years, touring, tours, whistler, workers, workmens
Here’s an in-depth report out of Canada on the rising concerns about chicken jerky treats from China.
CBC television’s Tom Harrington looks at the lack of pet food regulations in this Marketplace segment, called “Fighting For Fido.”
Posted by jwoestendiek October 18th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: america, animals, canada, cbc, chicken, china, chinese, dead, dogs, dying, fda, government, health, jerky, marketplace, news, pet food, pets, regulations, regulatory, report, safety, sick, tom harrington, treats
Given we were among the first to suggest the saga of Seamus was worth a ballad, we’re proud to report there are now two.
Last week we told you about DEVO’s ”Don’t Roof Rack Me, Bro!” a song written by band member Jerry Casale that mocks Mitt Romney for strapping his Irish setter, in a crate, to the roof of his car on a 12-hour family vacation trip.
This week, Ry Cooder is releasing his own Seamus-inspired song — “Mutt Romney Blues,” sung from the perspective of Seamus:
Hot in the day, cold all night
Where I’m goin’ I just don’t know
Po’ dog got to bottle up and go.
The song is the first on the album, “Election Special,” a bluesy collection of political songs from Cooder, who considers Romney “dangerous,” “cruel,” and a ”perfect creation for what the Republican Party is all about.”
Though DEVO got their song on the Internet first, Cooder’s will be officially released first — the album comes out Tuesday. “Don’t Roof Rack Me, Bro” is being released, both as a song and a game app on August 26, which is both National Dog Day and the day before the Republican National Convention.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 20th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, blues, campaign, canada, car, crate, devo, dogs, don't roof rack me bro, irish setter, mitt, mitt romney, mutt romney blues, pets, politics, presidential, romney, roof, ry cooder, seamus, seamus songs, songs of seamus, station wagon, strapped, trip, vacation
DEVO’s Jerry Casale has released, “Don’t Roof Rack Me, Bro,” a song that mocks Mitt Romney for strapping his Irish setter, in a crate, to the roof of his car on a family vacation trip.
The new single, subtitled “Seamus Unleashed,” was written by Casale and will be released in conjunction with a game app titled The Crate Escape: Seamus Unleashed.
The song and the game will launch August 26, which is both National Dog Day and the day before the Republican National Convention.
In releasing the single, DEVO joined forces with Dogs Against Romney, an online advocacy group with more than 70,000 members on Facebook, to help call attention to Mitt Romney’s “crate-gate” scandal.
Have a listen:
“I can’t overstate how excited we are to have DEVO’s Gerald Casale as a partner with us in making sure every voter in America knows Mitt Romney strapped his dog, Seamus, to the roof of his car for a 12-hour trip to Canada,” said Scott Crider, founder of Dogs Against Romney. “The new DEVO song Gerald created with his bandmates is awesome, and I believe it will be the soundtrack for Romney’s defeat in November.”
DEVO recorded the song as an anthem for pet lovers and as a message to others to never forget what happened to Seamus in 1983, when the Romneys drove from Boston to Ontario with the dog crated on the roof of their station wagon.
The single will be available at all digital music retailers; the game is initially being launched as an app on iTunes.
“We are delighted to have a new DEVO song as part of our game’s offering,” said Andy Berryman, chief marketing officer for Censault, LLC, the game’s developer. “It’s exciting to break new ground in the mobile/social gaming space – first as a game that is both fun to play and promotes a positive social message, and now as a new distribution medium for popular music.”
More info on the game can be found at www.facebook.com/CrateEscapeGame.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Casale, who has raised funds for Obama in Akron through a DEVO performance, said of Romney’s nearly 30-year-old mistake, ”It’s just a deal-breaker about the man … What you want in a leader is a guy with some humanity at his core … I think any animal lover that hears the story will learn so much about the character flaw of Romney.”
DEVO may include the song in its act when it tours America this fall with Blondie, he said.
While the song may or may not become the 1970′s-80′s-era band’s first hit in a long, long time, it has already gotten off to a better start than my suggestion for a Seamus song, a reworking of the Pink Floyd tune of the same name.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 16th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, app, campaign, canada, car, censault, crate, crate gate, devo, dog, dogs, dogs against romney, don't roof rack me bro, game, ipad, irish setter, jerry casale, listen, mitt romney, pets, politics, presidency, president, presidential, preview, released, ride, romney, roof, scott crider, seamus, seamus unleashed, single, song, the crate escape, vacation
A second person with a disability says she and her service dog were asked to leave the McDonald’s restaurant in Alberta, Canada, that reportedly kicked out a man and his dog last week.
Carla Schneider says she was waiting in line to buy coffee in January 2010 when she was approached by an employee of the McDonald’s in Wetaskiwin who asked her about her St. Bernard.
Schneider’s disability stems from a traffic accident that left her with a brain injury and without the use of her right eye, CBC News reported.
McDonald’s said in an email that Schneider was asked to remove her dog, Angus, from the restaurant because she couldn’t “provide the required information for the service dog.”
Schneider says that isn’t true.
“I produced my government of Alberta certification card that qualifies Angus as a service dog and he asked me to explain my disabilities to him,” Schneider said. “Why do I need a dog and why do I have to use a dog that big?”
She said she chose a large breed as her service dog because it helps her with the balance problems caused by her disability.
Schneider complained to McDonald’s at the time of the incident, and received an apology letter and $20 worth of gift certificates, she said.
The McDonald’s is the same one that asked John Dignard and his service dog, Eve, to leave the premises last week because, according to Dignard, customers had complained that the dog smelled.
The manager of the McDonald’s denied last week that Dignard was asked to leave, saying he had departed voluntarily after he was told about customer complaints regarding his “behaviour and the well-being of his service dog.”
“It’s really disheartening to hear the message is falling on deaf ears,” said Alison Ainsworth, the Alberta woman who lobbied the province to make it illegal for businesses to deny service to disabled people with service dogs. “I think the Alberta government came up with the Alberta Service Dogs Act but passing such a legislation in absence of credible, meaningful information being communicated isn’t going far enough.”
Ainsworth says the government needs to do more to get businesses to comply.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 20th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alberta, angus, animals, brain, canada, denied, disabilities, disabled, dog, Eve, injuries, mcdonald's, pets, restaurants, saint bernard, service, service dog, st. bernard, Wetaskiwin
“Your dog stinks and everybody is writing letters to me,” John Dignard says he was told by the manager. “I’m tired of it and I want you to leave.”
Dignard, who suffered a brain injury when he was struck by a car at age five, says he relies on the dog, named Eve, to help him with his sense of direction, and to overcome moments of confusion and memory lapse.
He says he showed the manager a government-issued certification for the dog and told him that he could not be denied service.
“I’ll pay the fine … I don’t care. I want you and the dog never to come back here no more,” Dignard says the manager of the restaurant, in Wetaskiwin, replied.
CBC News reported that two McDonald’s employees supported Dignard’s account, but the owner of the McDonald’s, D.J. Sharma, said that Dignard was never asked to leave.
“The customer and his service animal have always been welcome in the restaurant and at no time were they refused service or asked to leave,” Sharma said in a written statement.
“We reached out to the customer after receiving numerous customer complaints regarding the individual’s behaviour and the well-being of his service animal. After approaching the customer, they voluntarily left the restaurant.”
Dignard says he is planning to complain to the Alberta Human Rights Commission, and won’t return to the McDonald’s.
“I’m not going to spend my money at McDonald’s if they cannot respect my disability…Change your attitude towards service dogs. “They’re not pets. They’re working dogs.”
(Photo: CBC News)
Posted by jwoestendiek June 15th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alberta, animals, assistance, brain, canada, disabilities, discrimination, dogs, ejects, Eve, injured, injury, John Dignard, manager, mcdonald's, pets, refused, restaurant, service, service dog, smells, stink, Wetaskiwin
Mitt Romney says, if he had a chance to do it all over again, he would not put the family dog in a carrier on top of a station wagon for a 12-hour ride to Canada.
“Certainly not with the attention it’s received,” Romney said in an interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer.
In other words, he regrets getting caught. But does he regret the act?
His comments sound a lot like those Michael Vick has uttered since serving his sentence for dogfighting-related offenses. Like saying he regrets how the public perceived his acts. Like saying he’d still be doing it, if not for getting caught. Like saying it was all part of urban culture.
Dogfighting is no more a part of urban culture than putting a dog on your roof is part of suburban culture.
The tale of Seamus, the Romney’s Irish setter, is an old one, from the 1980s, first disclosed when Tagg Romney told the story in 2007 — how Seamus got sick during the trip, how Seamus got hosed down during the trip, how the Romneys continued on, dog still on the roof.
The question posed by Sawyer was submitted by a Yahoo! reader: “Would you transport Seamus like that again?”
Though the presidential candidate said no, his wife, Ann Romney, again pointed out how much Seamus “loved it.”
“He would see that crate and would … go crazy because he was going with us on vacation,” she said. “It was to me a kinder thing to bring him along than to leave him in the kennel…”
Posted by jwoestendiek April 17th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 12 hours, abc, again, animals, ann romney, apology, canada, car, carrier, crate, cruelty, diane sawyer, dogs, getting caught, irish setter, michael vick, mitt, mitt romney, perceptions, pets, politics, presidency, public, regrets, ride, romney, roof, seamus, statements, trip
That’s Rick Santorum atop the car roof, and Mitt Romney behind the wheel, on the cover of next week’s New Yorker.
Robert Staake, the artist behind the New Yorker’s March 12 cover, apparently saw some similarities between Seamus’ 12-hour ride in a kennel atop the Romney family car and the less than smooth sailing Santorum’s presidential campaign has encountered of late as Romney appears to be taking control.
Romney, as we’ve duly noted, strapped the kennel containing his Irish Setter atop the family car during a trip to Canada in 1993.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 6th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, campaign, canada, car, cartoon, cartoonist, cover, crate, dog, irish setter, mitt romney, new yorker, pets, politics, presidential, republicans, rick santorum, robert staake, romney, roof, rooftop, santorum, seamus, trip, vacation
A member of Dogs Against Romney has posted this video on YouTube, portraying what it must have been like for Seamus when Mitt Romney transported the Irish setter in a crate atop his car on a 12-hour drive nearly 30 years ago.
“Mitt claims the dog enjoyed the ride, so I decided to test to see how enjoyable being strapped to the roof of a car in a kennel really was,” Erik Mayer explains.
The video reenactment — for which a stuff dog was used — shows “how terrifying such a ride would be … The callousness — the cruelty — of subjecting a family pet to this FOR 12 HOURS, even after the dog soiled himself in fear, is difficult to fathom,” Dogs Against Romney says on its website and Facebook page.
Romney admits to transporting Seamus on the roof of his car during a family trip from Boston to Canada. At a stop along the way, after noticing the dog had soiled himself, he hosed down the dog and crate before continuing.
“Think about it — a loving, loyal member of the Romney family, strapped dangerously atop the car, lonely, wind-whipped, uncomfortable, sick and now wet,” Dogs Against Romney said. “We believe this is wrong — and a clear indication that Mitt Romney possesses a degree of detached coldness not easily comprehended by families who love their pets.”
However old and rehashed it is, the saga of Seamus may be a character-revealing tale, and it sure is a far cry — when it comes to reflecting the bond between man and dog — from our previous traveling dog story, the one about Ladybug.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 29th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, campaign, canada, car, crate, dogs, dogs against romney, erik mayer, irish setter, mitt romney, pets, presidential, re-creation, re-enanctment, ride, roof, rooftop, seamus, vacation, video