Dog lovers have been pushing for the measure in light of recent fatal pet shootings by law enforcement officers, some of which were widely viewed as questionable and might have been preventable if officers had more knowledge of dogs and were better able to determine when they posed a true threat.
During debate on the bill, lawmakers said 37 dogs have been shot by officers in Colorado over the last five years.
“The idea here is to keep officers and animals safe,” Hickenlooper said. The governor brought his dog, Skye — a shelter mutt who is part Akita, part bulldog, part chow chow – along for the bill signing.
Also on Monday, the Colorado legislature proclaimed shelter dogs and cats as the official state pets, approving a proposal presented by schoolchildren as part of a program to teach them about the legislative process.
The training legislation mandates that sheriffs’ offices and police departments offer three hours of online training on recognizing dog behaviors and employing non-lethal control methods, according to the Associated Press. The law also directs authorities to give dog owners the option to control or remove their dogs when officers respond to a call concerning a nonviolent crime. The training must be in place by Sept. 1, 2014.
The bill — believed to be the first of its kind – was unanimously approved.
(Photo: Brittany Moore with Ava, her German shepherd, who was shot and killed by an Erie, Colo., police officer in May 2011)
Posted by jwoestendiek May 14th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, ava, bill, colorado, dog, dogs, governor, killings, law, law enforcement, mandated, officers, online, pets, police, requirement, shootings, signed, three hours, training
The 7-½-year-old Tibetan terrier had been diagnosed with lymphoma. The former governor’s husband, Bob Eaves, said Zipper died after suffering a stroke.
Zipper and her mother, Dosie, lived in the Executive Mansion in Raleigh during Perdue’s four-year term.
Her death came just a few days after that of Barney, a Scottish terrier — also suffering from lymphoma — belonging to former President George W. Bush.
“When we took her to the Veterinary School at N.C. State, they also diagnosed her with lymphoma,” Eaves told the New Bern Sun Journal. “They gave her only two months to live.”
Zipper surpassed that prognosis by nearly two months.
Over Christmas, Perdue stayed in Raleigh with her ailing dog. She plans to go to Harvard University later this month to teach public policy for the spring semester.
Eaves said Zipper enjoyed a last visit to the Trent River on Tuesday evening.
“She raced out to the river like she had all the energy in the world,” he said. On Wednesday, he said, she was listless and barely moving. “…The vet came and said she wouldn’t make it through the night and he helped her go.”
(Photo: N.C. Cultural Resources Commission)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 8th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bev perdue, bob eaves, dead, death, dies, dog, dogs, first dog, governor, lymphoma, new bern, north carolina, pet, pets, stroke, tibetan terrier, zipper
The office of Florida Gov. Rick Scott has shed more light on what happened to Reagan, the dog the governor’s family rescued during his campaign.
Reagan, after his much publicized adoption, disappeared from public view when Scott took office.
The governor said last week that the dog — whose name had been chosen by his fans on Facebook — was returned to the grooming shop where his family got him, due to behavior problems.
The governor told the Tampa Bay Times that the dog never hurt anyone, but it turns out Reagan both barked and bit.
A spokeswoman for the governor said this week that Reagan was returned to the grooming shop after biting a governor’s mansion employee who moved his water bowl.
“The governor and first lady love dogs, and they had to make a hard decision when it was clear that Reagan was very anxious around lots of different people,” Scott spokeswoman Melissa Sellers said.
The dog bite occurred while the governor was in Orlando on Jan. 7, 2011 — three days after he took office.
Mansion grounds employee Jennifer Kinsey was arranging flowers when Reagan bit her on the right hand, according to an incident report released by Scott’s office. The injury required no medical treatment.
Scott introduced the yellow Lab to Facebook readers on Sept. 7, 2010, shortly after he won the Republican nomination. Facebook friends chose the name Reagan from a list of three choices suggested by the campaign and they praised Scott for adopting a dog.
Sellers said Scott flew Reagan back to Naples on his private jet to return him to All Pets Grooming and Boarding. The shop’s owner has told one television station that Reagan’s name has been changed to Pluto and that he now lives on a horse ranch in Collier County.
“The family decided that the best decision for the dog and all those who visit would be to have the grooming business find Reagan a more appropriate home with less people and activity,” Sellers said. “It was a hard choice that sometimes pet owners have to make.”
The Scotts have since adopted Tallee, another yellow Lab.
The governor’s communications directors initially refused to respond when asked about the disappearance of Reagan. Scott, when asked directly, said he returned the dog to previous owners because it barked a lot and frightened mansion staffers.
Sellers said Scott had been out of town and did not recall the biting incident when he talked to reporters.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 23rd, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, adoption, behavior, bit, bite, biting, campaign, communications, dog, employee, facebook, florida, governor, groomer, incident, mansion, news, pluto, problems, publicity, reagan, report, returned, rick scott, spokesperson, tampa bay times, yellow lab
Back when he was the Republican candidate for governor of Florida, Rick Scott and his staff did their best to let the public know his family adopted a rescue dog.
They even held a contest to allow the public to name the dog, who would become “Reagan.”
So, to some, it seemed strange that the Labrador retriever hadn’t been seen again since Scott took office, in January of 2011.
The Tampa Bay Times, albeit it two years later, finally solved the mystery — but not until after getting quite a runaround.
The Times last week asked both Scott’s current and former communications directors what happened to Reagan, but both refused to answer.
Brian Burgess, communications director during the campaign and for more than a year after Scott took office, told two Times reporters he thought it was strange that they would ask, and declined to answer.
When pressed, he referred all questions about the dog to Melissa Sellers, the governor’s new communications director. Sellers told reporters she was too busy to find an answer to the question.
A spokesman for the governor’s wife also declined to respond to questions about Reagan, saying only that they have one dog — a rescued 7-year-old Lab named Tallee.
What was the governor’s office trying to hide, reporters wondered. Why weren’t the communications directors, uh, communicating? And where was Reagan, the dog the Scott family made such a big deal about when they rescued him?
Commenters at the time praised Scott for getting a rescue dog, instead of a purebred like Bo, the president’s Portuguese water dog.
“The Scott family is proud to announce that the name (chosen by you) for their newly adopted pup is Reagan!” read Scott’s announcement on his Facebook page. “Thanks to everyone who participated in the fun contest.”
But apparently they were less proud to announce what became of Reagan, and how they ended up with a dog named Tallee.
This week, Times reporters were able to ask the governor himself, and learned that Reagan, due to behavioral issues, had been returned to the grooming and boarding business they got him from.
Scott said Reagan never bit anyone, but that he “scared the living daylights” out of people at the mansion. One kitchen employee threatened to quit because of the dog, he said, and photographer Eric Tournay was frightened when the dog “barked like crazy” every time he saw him with a camera.
“He was a rescue dog,” Scott said, “and he couldn’t be around anybody that was carrying anything.”
About a month after the family moved to the governor’s mansion, they gave the dog back to his prior owner, the governor said.
Tallee, he said, has a much different personality.
Based on his description, Tallee sounds more needy, submissive and controllable.
(Photo: Reagan, from Facebook)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 16th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, answers, avoidance, candidate, communications, contest, directors, disappeared, dog, facebook, florida, governor, labrador, naming, news media, politics, reagan, republican, rescue, retriever, rick scott, tallee, tampa bay times, whatever happened
Christie termed the proposal ”stupid,” Bloomberg reports.
He also said the proposed law was an example of how Democrats, who control the state Senate and General Assembly, are wasting time with trivial issues when there are bigger ones to be solved.
“This will tell you everything you need to know about how New Jersey runs under the Democrats,” Christie said in his monthly “Ask the Governor” broadcast on Ewing-based WKXW-FM radio. “They’re actually spending their time on this.”
If the bill makes it through the legislature for him to sign into law, Christie said, he wouldn’t put his name “near something that stupid.”
Assemblywoman L. Grace Spencer, a Newark Democrat who owns a Pomeranian , introduced the bill to require harnesses for animals not being transported in cages. Violators would be fined $25.
Posted by jwoestendiek October 1st, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bill, cars, cats, chris christie, christie, democrat, dogs, governor, grace spencer, harnesses, law, legislature, pets, proposed, republican, restraints, seat belts, signature, stupid, transporting
The North Carolina Highway Patrol officer who was fired in 2007 after being videotaped kicking his drug-sniffing dog has returned to work.
Charles Jones will be a sergeant in the patrol’s special operations unit, reconstructing accidents, Highway Patrol spokesman Jeff Gordon said Monday.
His rehiring is in response to a court order issued in February. A Superior Court judge, the state personnel commission and an administrative law judge all ruled that Jones should get his job back with the Highway Patrol, according to the Raleigh News and Observer.
The video of Jones kicking his canine partner, Ricoh, was posted on YouTube, leading then-Gov. Mike Easley to get involved. Jones superiors have testified that the governor’s involvement led them to fire Jones, who they had planned to only discipline.
Jones was filmed kicking Ricoh and suspending him by a leash attached to a railing with his rear paws on the ground. The dog had refused to release a piece of fire hose he had been given as a reward for alerting officers to the presence of drugs, according to court documents.
Jones maintained that he was acting within patrol policy. He appealed the decision to dismiss him and won — a decision most recently upheld by a state appeals court.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 3rd, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, charles jones, dog, dogs, drug-sniffing, fired, governor, highway patrol, K-9, k9, kicked, kicking, law enforcement, mike easley, north carolina, pets, police, police dogs, rehired, reinstated, ricoh, state trooper, training, video
Ohio Gov. John Kasich yesterday signed a bill that repeals the 25-year-old state law that automatically declared pit bulls vicious.
Once the new law takes effect, in 90 days, shelters will be able to allow them to be adopted, owners will no longer be required to buy additional liability insurance and pit bulls will be free of the restrictions imposed when the state declared them, based on their looks, a public enemy.
House Bill 14 was overwhelmingly approved 67-30 by the state House on Feb. 8.
In addition to dropping any reference to specific breeds, the new law redefines what makes a dog “vicious.”
The old law defined a vicious dog as one that, without provocation, has seriously injured a person, killed another dog, or belongs to the general breed of pit bull.
Dogs so labeled required additional liability insurance, restraints and were subject to other restrictions.
The new law revises the definitions for vicious, as well as the categories of “dangerous” or “nuisance” dogs. It also requires a dog warden to provide proof of why a dog deserves such a classification, and creates a process for dog owners to appeal law enforcement’s labeling of their dogs.
“A well-meaning but poorly conceived law is no more, and it represents a victory for Ohio dogs and their people,” said Gregory Castle, chief executive officer of Best Friends Animal Society, a Utah-based organization that opposes laws that discriminate against certain breeds of dog.
“It ends the practice of causing undue hardship to thousands of responsible owners of entirely friendly, properly supervised, well-socialized pets,” he added.
Best Friends said it hopes that the Florida’s legislature follows suit, and votes to change a similarly archaic law in Miami-Dade County, the only county in Florida where pit bulls are banned.
“The change in Ohio law truly signals a new day for dogs that for years have been discriminated against just because of their looks — the same type of discrimination that’s been going on in Miami-Dade County for years,” said Ledy VanKavage, senior legislative attorney for Best Friends.
Legislation that would repeal the Miami pit bull ban is under consideration in Florida, and recently passed through two more committees.
Florida outlawed canine profiling in 1990, but Miami-Dade County’s 1989 pit bull ban was grandfathered in. Hundreds of dogs and puppies are seized and killed in Miami-Dade every year because of their appearance, Best Friends says.
Ohio was the only state in the country to declare a type of dog vicious, based solely on appearance with no consideration of behavior.
(Photo: A smiling pit bull, from the website Three Little Pitties)
Posted by jwoestendiek February 22nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, automatic, bans, best friends, breed, breed based, breed-specific, breeds, dade county, dangerous, definition, discrimination, dog, dogs, governor, inherent, insurance, john kasich, law, legislation, liability, miami, nuisance, ohio, pets, pit bull, pit bulls, pitbull, pitbulls, profiling, redefine, repeal, restraints, restrictions, signed, vicious
The North Carolina Court of Appeals ruled today that Charles Jones, shown above kicking his State Highway Patrol dog in September 2007, and fired shortly thereafter, should be reinstated.
And with back pay.
Jones was fired after another trooper turned over two 15-second video clips of him suspending his K-9 partner, Ricoh, from a railing and repeatedly kicking him to force him to release a chew toy.
In 2008, the State Personnel Commission found Jones’ punishment too harsh and ordered that he be reinstated.
Tuesday’s ruling is the latest in a series, all of which agreed the Highway Patrol did not have cause to terminate Jones’ employment. (Ricoh didn’t get a vote.) You can find the full text of the ruling here.
Patrol leaders said they initially planned to discipline Jones but decided to fire him when then-Gov. Mike Easley’s office intervened.
In its ruling, the court noted testimony from Jones’ former supervisor, Lt. Col. Cecil Lockley, who said, “They want him gone … the decision regarding Sgt. Jones’ career was predetermined, not by the patrol’s disciplinary process but by an outside entity.”
Lockley called Jones’ method of disciplining Ricoh “ugly,” but said it did not fall outside the realm of patrol-accepted training techniques.
The appeals court agreed with a lower court ruling that ”the training method used by Jones on Ricoh in this matter, while appearing excessive and extreme to the general public, is not unreasonably outside of or substantially different from several of the training techniques that are tested, trained and approved for use by the Patrol.”
It concluded, “Jones acted consistently with his training, and used compliance techniques on Ricoh similar to those used by all Patrol members who were canine handlers.”
We’d hope that the highway patrol has redefined the boundaries of its realm of training techniques – as it stated it would after the case came to public attention.
A rebuilding of the K-9 unit was promised, and an end to the kind of rough training tactics — swinging, suspending and kicking of patrol dogs — that the video depicts. New training procedures, they said, would specifically prohibit punching, kicking, beating and choking of dogs.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 7th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: abuse, animal cruelty, animals, appeals, back pay, brutal, charles jones, court, courts, cruelty to animals, discipline, dismissed, dogs, fired, governor, highway patrol, K-9, kicked, law, law enforcement, mike easley, north carolina, pets, police, police dogs, political, pressure, procedures, reinstated, ricoh, rough, ruling, suspended, techniques, training, video
Former state senator Tom Hayden urged California Gov. Jerry Brown not to repeal a state law that requires shelters to keep dogs and cats six days before euthanizing them.
Hayden posted a video online urging Gov. Brown – an avowed dog lover who features his Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Sutter, on the official governor’s website – to take a look at his own dog before repealing the legislation.
“Governor, I see you’re a dog owner. I can tell from the publicity that you love that dog, your wife loves that dog,” said Hayden, who wrote the 1998 bill while he was in the senate. ”So stop and think: Thousands of dogs and cats are put to death needlessly every year … I urge you to look at your dog before you allow this bill that protects animals to die.”
The law lengthened the time animal shelters must hold stray animals before euthanizing them, generally from three days to six days. Its edicts were suspended by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2009.
The shelter law is one of about 30 local government mandates Gov. Brown is proposing to repeal next fiscal year to save money, according to the Sacramento Bee.
The state estimates it would save about $46 million from the shelter mandate alone.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 24th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animal, animal welfare, animals, budget, california, cats, corgi, crisis, dogs, euthanasia, governor, holding period, jerry brown, law, mandate, measure, pembroke, pets, plea, repeal, repealing, shelters, six days, sutter, three days, tom hayden, video, welsh corgi
California’s first dog now has a page on the governor’s official website.
Gov. Jerry Brown has added a biography of his Pembroke Welsh corgi, Sutter, to the website, alongside his own bio, and that of his wife, Anne Gust Brown
It’s basically the same information that was on Sutter Brown’s Facebook page, created not long after the governor became the dog’s guardian.
Gov. Brown lists the first dog’s hometown as Ketchum, Idaho, the dog’s religious views as Zen Jesuit and his political affiliation as Whig.
The website describes Sutter as “practical and not carried away by the barking constituencies.”
Sutter belonged to Brown’s sister, Kathleen, a Goldman Sachs executive who moved from San Francisco to Chicago last year.
The governor’s longtime pet, a black Lab named Dharma, died last year.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 19th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bio, biography, brown, california, dharma, dogs, facebook, first dog, governor, jerry brown, pembroke welsh corgi, pets, politics, profile, sacramento, state, sutter, sutter brown, web page, website