A Texas judge ruled yesterday that a dog who was missing her nose when she was found wandering in a field should not be returned to her original owners.
“I find that this dog was unreasonably deprived of care,” Hutto Municipal Judge Lucas Wilson said of the dog, named Victory by her rescuers.
Animal control officers initially believed she’d been the victim of abuse, but Victory’s owners, when they came forward to reclaim the dog, said she suffered from an autoimmune disease that ate her nose away.
The court ruling, which came after a four-hour hearing, means the bearded collie will remain in the care of Austin Pets Alive, which will place her in a new home.
Josh Fogelman, an attorney for the owners, Shawn and Candice Lance, said after the ruling that the owners took good care of the dog, who they called Olive, and never abused her.
“I believe this is a witch hunt,” he said after the ruling. According to the Austin American-Statesman, Fogelman was unsure whether the Lances would appeal the ruling.
Hutto police found the dog wandering in early January and took her to a local veterinarian. She was later placed in foster care by Austin Pets Alive, a local animal welfare organization that raised $15,000 in donations for her. Victory was scheduled to receive a skin graft, but that was canceled when her owners called police in February to reclaim the dog.
Shawn Lance, who recently moved from Amarillo, said he had taken the dog to a veterinarian there three times after her nose started to scar and lose color. The medicine the vet prescribed made the dog sick, though, so he took her off it, he testified.
Lance, a financial adviser for Edward Jones who said he worked for several years as a veterinary technician, testified that he and his wife tried to find the dog after she disappeared by putting up a missing poster at a community mailbox and calling an animal shelter.
He said that the dog lost her nose when he took her to a veterinarian.
No charges were filed against the Lances, but a judge was asked to intervene to determine whether Victory should be returned to them.
Judge Wilson said that Shawn Lance made an unreasonable decision to “wean her off of medication” and said veterinary records don’t indicate the dog, at the time of her last visit, had lost her nose.
“If you look at the veterinary records they say the nose is raw but still there,” he said.
While it’s possible the dog lost her nose to disease, the judge said, evidence indicated the pet was being deprived of proper care.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 7th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abuse, animal control, animals, austin pets alive, autoimmune, bearded collie, care, denied, disease, dog, dogs, hutto, judge, lost, lucas wilson, neglect, no nose, nose, noseless, pets, proper, ruling, suspected, victory
It has been a long wait, but Kabang, the Filipino dog who lost the top half of her snout when she saved two young girls from an oncoming motorcycle, has received the first in a series of dental and facial surgeries.
On Tuesday, surgeons removed her two upper premolar teeth and reconstructed her left eyelid, according to the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine blog that is tracking her progress.
The mixed-breed dog, thought to be around 2 years old, was flown in October the California veterinary hospital, where vets discovered she also had vaginal cancer and heartworm.
That led to long delays before her planned facial surgeries – aimed not a rebuilding her snout, but at making it easier for her to breathe and avoid infections.
Kabang’s upper snout was torn off by the motorcycle’s spokes when she darted between it and the girls in December 2011.
Surgeons say, after a recovery period, a second and final facial surgery will take place later this month.
Kabang received six intravenous chemotherapy treatments for her venereal tumor and has completed her treatment for heartworm disease.
Once recovered from the surgeries, the dog will likely go back to Zamboanga City in southern region of the Philippines and be reunited with her owner, Rudy Bunggal, who took in Kabang as a stray puppy.
Witnesses say Rudy’s 9-year-old daughter, Dina, and her 3-year-old cousin, Princess Diansing, were crossing a busy street in the path of a motorcycle when the dog lunged at its tires.
After hearing of Kabang’s heroics and her plight, Karen Kenngott, a nurse in upstate New York, launched a fundraising drive to bring the dog to America to get the treatments she needs.
(Photo: Don Preisler / UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 7th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: accident, animals, davis, dog, dogs, girls, hero, kabang, lost, medicine, motorcycle, pets, philippines, rescue, rudy bunggal, save, saving, school, snout, snoutless, surgery, uc davis, university of california, veterinary, zamboanga city
Authorities are crediting a three-year-old girl’s dog with keeping her alive during a freezing night lost in a forest in Poland.
“This dog is the most important part of this story, he is a hero,” said firefighter Grzegorz Szymonowski. “It is thanks to this dog that the girl survived the night.”
Rescue workers searched for the girl, named Julia, after she wandered into the forest near her village in southwestern Poland.
Her dog drew the attention of searchers, and also likely kept her from freezing to death, according to Reuters.
The girl’s grandmother, Danuta Balak, says the dog was the girl’s best friend.
“She was with this dog all the time. She didn’t go anywhere without it. When she was with me, when I was looking after her, she constantly said, ‘Granny, the dog needs to come in the house. And she told me to cut bread and she fed it all the time.”
Julia is being treated for a mild case of frostbite.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 6th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: 3, alerted, alive, animals, dog, dogs, forest, freezing, girl, hero, kept, lost, pets, poland, polish, saved, search, searchers, three
But not until after traveling a pretty bumpy road.
In December, the beagle-German shepherd landed in the Nash County Animal Shelter in North Carolina, where, after going unadopted, the day was nearing when he’d be euthanized.
His cause was taken up by a local animal rescue group, Promoting Animal Welfare in N.C., which persuaded a rescue group in Vermont to take him in.
Arrangements were made to ship him north, where he was deemed more likely to get adopted.
As the Rocky Mount Telegram tells it, Felix and another dog were headed up Interstate 95 in January when the van they were in crashed in Emporia, Virginia. Both dogs were ejected from their crates and the vehicle. The other dog was hit by a car and killed. Felix disappeared.
Felix spent the next three weeks wandering as dog lovers in North Carolina and Virginia joined forces to try and find him. They created “Operation Finding Felix” — a Facebook page that quickly drew more than 1,000 followers.
Frequently, sightings of him were reported, by residents and truckers who also were keeping an eye out for him. But none panned out. Promoting Animal Welfare offered a $600 reward for his return, and a search dog was hired to help track him down, but neither led to immediate results.
Each weekend, volunteers searched for the dog around Emporia, posting fliers, hiking through the woods, and enlisting the help of others, like the manager of a local Burger King who allowed volunteers to post fliers about Felix inside the restaurant.
On Feb. 24, one of the restaurant’s customers, Pat Holland, saw the dog’s picture and realized she had seen him by her apartment earlier that day.
She rushed home and found the dog on a neighbor’s front steps.
“He looked like he was hungry, so I put some food out there for him to eat and put some water out there,” the neighbor, Marty Newkirk said. “The next thing I know he was laying down at my door.”
Newkirk had let the dog inside. He was planning on letting him stay the night, and even thinking about contacting apartment management about the possibility of keeping him.
Newkirk and Holland called police, who had also been cooperating in the search for Felix.
“They were looking for the dog also,” Newkirk said. “Everybody in Virginia was looking for the dog.”
Volunteers from the North Carolina rescue group came and picked Felix up, Newkirk said. “They started crying because they were happy to see the dog, I started crying because they were taking him.”
Back in North Carolina, back where he started, Felix finally found a home.
Before his ill-fated trip north — while Felix was getting neutered, and vaccinated, and treated for heartworm — he was being fostered by a young woman. She’d tried to persuade her boyfriend and his family to adopt Felix. Already having a dog, they declined.
When Felix got back to town, after all he’d been through, they changed their minds.
(Photo: Rocky Mount Telegram)
Posted by jwoestendiek March 5th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 95, accident, adoption, animal shelter, animals, burger king, crash, death row, dog, dogs, euthanasia, facebook, felix, interstate, lost, missing, nash county, north carolina, operation finding felix, pets, promoting animal welfare, rescue group, rescued, rocky mount, transport
A one-eyed Pekingese who ran off from his home nearly two years ago was reunited with his family in Arizona this week — after running out of another home and into the side of a police car.
Buddy had been missing since May 2011 when, during a monsoon, a gate flew open and he darted off the property of his owner, Jessica Rowe of Mesa.
Rowe searched, but was unable to find the small black and white dog.
On Friday — 22 months later — Buddy ran out the door of a home in Phoenix and into the street, AZFamily reported.
“That’s when I heard this really horrible sound as if a large stone or some object hit the driver side of my patrol vehicle, looked out the rear view and saw the dog down on the road,” Phoenix police officer Don Martin said.
Martin and another officer wrapped up the dog and took him to a vet, where a microchip was discovered, showing the dog was owned by Rowe.
Police called her and she reunited with Buddy Monday.
Martin said a citizen found Buddy about a week ago and had been caring for him up until his run in with the police cruiser. It’s unclear where Buddy had been before that.
“… We all like being police officers, because of moments like this,” Martin said as he watched dog and owner reconnect. ” … This is what you live for.”
Officer Martin also paid the dog’s vet bill.
Posted by jwoestendiek March 5th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, arizona, buddy, car, dog, dogs, don martin, found, hit, jessica rowe, lost, mesa, microchip, officer, one-eyed, pekingese, pets, phoenix, police, returned, reunion, vet
“It’s ludicrous that in a nation of dog lovers, thousands of dogs are roaming the streets or stuck in kennels because the owner cannot be tracked down,” Environment Secretary Owen Paterson said.
Owners who fail to follow the edict will be subject to fines of £500, or about $785.
Paterson said the move will allow all lost, stray or abandoned dogs to be traced back to their owners, ensuring people are held accountable for their animals.
The creation of a database of all dog owners in England will allow also law enforcement officials to track down the owners of dogs seized for aggressive or other bad behavior, The Telegraph reported. But government officials insist the move is aimed primarily at saving dogs.
Paterson said that 110,000 dogs were lost a year and microchipping will speed up the tracing of their owners. Around 6,000 dogs are put down each year, while strays cost the taxpayer and welfare charities £57 million a year.
“I am determined to put an end to this and ease the pressure on charities and councils to find new homes for these dogs,” he said. “Microchipping is a simple solution that gives peace of mind to owners. It makes it easier to get their pet back if it strays and easier to trace if it’s stolen.”
As of 2016 police officers and local authorities will have the power to check to see if dogs have been fitted with microchips. Owners who have not complied will be given one last chance to do so before fines are issued.
Government officials said dogs won’t be swept up randomly or without cause: “Clearly the police and local authorities will not be seeking out law-abiding responsible owners to check …” a spokesman said.
Paterson said that the microchipping will be free for all dog owners because it is being subsidized by the Dogs Trust charity.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 8th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, accountability, animals, british, dogs, england, environment, fines, government, lost, mandate, mandatory, microchip, microchipping, microchips, owen paterson, owners, pets, strays, uk
Jordan Biggs, the Oregon State University student who found a dog on the loose in Portland, took him home, and refused to give him back to his owner, is on the verge of giving up her fight for custody of the husky mix she named Bear.
The Portland Oregonian reports that Biggs, – facing $30,000 worth of legal bills and a possible felony conviction — has agreed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge of second-degree theft, serve 80 hours of community service, and concede that the dog is not hers.
If she meets those conditions, the charge would be expunged from her record after six months, allowing the 20-year-old to continue with her plans to become a teacher.
Biggs was visiting Portland when she found the dog and took him home to Corvallis.
More than a year later, the dog’s original owner, Sam Hanson-Fleming, spotted Biggs and the dog he knew as Chase in Southeast Portland.
County animal control officials ruled that the dog belonged to Hanson-Fleming, who said his dog had jumped a fence and run away. But Biggs still refused to relinquish custody of the dog.
In July of last year, police in Corvallis seized the dog and charged Biggs with theft. Bear, or Chase, spent 75 days in a shelter after that — until a judge in October ordered the dog returned to Hanson-Fleming.
Biggs filed a lawsuit seeking to regain custody of the dog, who she trained to serve as an asthma therapy dog, alerting her to oncoming asthma attacks. As part of her plea agreement, the lawsuit would be dropped.
Both Biggs and Hanson-Fleming find the apparent outcome of the case less than acceptable.
“There is no way she should not have to have this on her record — she’s a thief,” Hanson-Fleming said. “It’s no different than if you went to Walmart and stole a bunch of shirts. … She should be treated like any other criminal.”
Posted by jwoestendiek January 30th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: agreement, animals, asthma, bear, chase, corvallis, courts, custody, deal, dispute, dog, dogs, found, husky, jordan biggs, judge, lost, mix, oregon, oregon state university, owner, pets, plea, portland, sam hanson-fleming, student, therapy
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 – firstname.lastname@example.org – 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
Bring author Dennis Lehane’s dog back to him and he’ll name a character in one of his next novels after you.
That’s the promise that Lehane made on his Facebook page after his beloved beagle disappeared from his Boston home this week.
WCVB.com reported that Tessa, went missing Monday, and was last seen around 4:30 p.m. that afternoon near a gas station in the neighborhood of Allston.
Lehane is the author of several best selling novels, including “Mystic River” and “Gone Baby Gone.”
He posted on Facebook that Tessa was microchipped, but that she wasn’t wearing any tags when she was left out in the yard and apparently jumped a fence and ran away.
“It’s possible she’s staying in some good Samaritan’s home right now or has tucked herself away on a porch,” Lehane wrote. “But if anyone sees her or knows of her whereabouts, please reach out to this page.”
The reward: “Naming of character in the next book for anyone who gets her back to us! (No, really!)”
“She’s smart, fast, and immeasurably sweet. She doesn’t have a mean bone in her body,” he posted.
Lehane was getting numerous suggestions from his Facebook fans, from hiring a doggie detective to assembling a beagle posse to search for Tessa.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 27th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, author, beagle, character, dennis lehane, disappeared, dog, dogs, lost, missing, named, novel, pets, return, reward, tessa, you
When Abby wandered off from her home in Fairbanks, Alaska, during a snowstorm, her family held out only a little hope.
Abby was 8-years-old. Temperatures were dipping to 40 degrees below zero. And Abby was blind.
But a little hope turned out to be enough.
Seven days later, after walking 10 miles to the edge of a local musher’s dog yard, Abby, a brown-and-white mixed breed rescued from a shelter as a pup, was found and returned to her owners, The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported.
“It’s a miracle, there’s no other words to describe it,” said McKenzie Grapengeter, who has three sons under the age of 10. “We never expected to have her to be returned safe and alive.”
Musher and veterinarian Mark May said he came across the dog while running his team on Dec. 19, but didn’t stop to pick her up. The next day, the dog showed up at May’s house.
May said the dog had no signs of frostbite. “No frozen ears, no frozen toes, she’ll probably go back home and it’ll (be) business as usual. She’s no worse for wear but quite an adventure,” he said.
“We’re so, so grateful…” Grapengeter said, calling Abby’s return “the most amazing Christmas gift we could ever ask for.”
Posted by jwoestendiek December 26th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abby, alaska, animals, blind, christmas, christmas miracles, dog, dogs, fairbanks, found, home, lost, miracle, pets, returned, snowstorm