The Nevada Supreme Court — no stranger to such matters — will decide whether Onion, the Mastiff mix who killed his owner’s grandson on his first birthday, should live or die.
The court will hear arguments — 30 minutes worth, it has specified — on July 3 before deciding whether the city of Henderson should be allowed to kill the dog.
Another option has been offered by the Lexus Project, a New York-based organization that provides legal representation to dogs.
The Lexus Project intervened in the case and wants to gain custody of Onion, then send him to live at a secure sanctuary in Colorado.
The 120-pound mastiff-Rhodesian ridgeback mix killed Jeremiah Eskew-Shahan by biting him on the head the day of his first birthday party. Later that day, the owner turned Onion over to Henderson animal control officers, who planned to kill the dog in accordance with the city’s vicious-dog ordinance.
The city turned down the Lexus Project’s offer to take responsibility for the dog, and has fought its request to be awarded custody. Onion’s former owner now wants Lexus to have the dog, according to the Las Vegas Sun.
The court battle has been going on for a year now.
Last year, Clark County District Court Joanna Kishner ruled the city of Henderson could proceed with the dog’s execution.
The state Supreme Court issued a stay — it’s second in the case — until arguments could be heard.
Those will take place July 3 at 11:30 a.m.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 15th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: 120 pounds, animal control, animals, colorado, death, defense, dog, dogs, euthanasia, execution, henderson, jeremiah, legal, lexus project, life, mastiff, mix, nevada, onion, pets, rhodesian, ridgeback, safety, sanctuary, supreme court, the lexus project
House Bill 956 would create a new “aggressive dog” classification for pit bulls, Rottweilers, mastiffs, chows, Presa Canarios, wolf hybrids and any dogs “that are predominantly” a mix of those, WRAL reports.
The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Rodney Moore, D-Mecklenburg, said of those breeds, ”I don’t want to say those were the ones with the most incidents, but they were the most prevalent by the feedback that I’ve gotten.”
In other words, the proposed legislation doesn’t let facts get in the way.
Under the bill, prospective “aggressive breed” owners would have to undergo a criminal background check, apply and pay for a special state permit, notify their property insurer, and take a 4-hour education course before adopting, buying, or “otherwise taking possession of” one of the dogs.
Moore said the idea was brought to him by a concerned constituent.
“There needs to be some kind of accountability,” Moore said. “A lot of people breed them the wrong way. You have very harsh incidents of these dogs maiming children, maiming older folks, and sometimes even turning on their owner.”
The bill calls for county sheriff’s to provide the criminal background checks and report the findings to the state Department of Insurance. It would have the authority to deny a permit to anyone whose background check “is not suitable for the ownership of a dog belonging to an aggressive dog breed.”
The “aggressive dog permit” could cost as much as $25. Under the bill, the Department of Insurance could require additional insurance coverage be taken out by owners of the dogs.
“I’ve gotten a lot of feedback about it, saying I’m trying to blacklist these dogs, and that’s not the intent,” Moore said. “It’s just to let people take responsibility for owning those breeds.”
The representative’s email address is Rodney.Moore@ncleg.net
Posted by jwoestendiek April 19th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: aggressive, animals, background checks, bill, breeds, charlotte, chow, dog, dogs, fee, hb 956, house bill 956, insurance, law, legislature, mastiff, mixes, north carolina, ownership, permit, pets, pit bull, presa canario, proposal, representative, restrict, rodney moore, rottweiler, wolf hybrid
“…What I found out is, when you check your pet, you run the exact same risk of them not showing up as you do with your luggage. That’s kind of sobering,” said Michael Jarboe, whose dog, a Neapolitan mastiff named Bam Bam, died during a late August flight.
Jarboe decided to share his story days after model Maggie Rizer blamed United for the death of her two-year-old golden retriever Bea on a flight last month.
“We have been in contact with Mr. Jarboe and are saddened by the loss of his dog, Bam Bam. The safety of the animals we transport is always considered first and foremost when making decisions regarding their routing and carriage,” United said in a statement to NBC News.
Jarboe and his partner flew from Miami to San Francisco with Bam Bam on Aug. 28, with a layover in Houston. The two-and-a-half-year-old dog had flown four times before without any problems, Jarboe said.
Jarboe, who lives in Miami Beach, Fla., said he chose United because of its “PetSafe” program, which promises compartments in the cargo hold are pressurized and climate-controlled.
He said the layover in Houston was about three hours. Temperatures that day rose to 95 degrees.
When they arrived in San Francisco, they were told the dog had died. United paid for a necropsy, which determined the cause of death was acute cardiovascular collapse.
Before his death, Bam Bam had flown four times before — twice on United — without any problems.
United said Bam Bam was transported to a holding area during the layover, but according to Jarboe, employees did not use the climate-controlled vehicle dogs are usually transported in.
The airline has refunded the dog’s fare ($650, each way), and is working with Jarboe on additional compensation.
Between January 2012 and July 2012, 17 pets died and another 17 were injured on commercial airlines, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. In 2011, 35 pets died while flying, but only two of those were on United, which had the lowest number of animal deaths that year.
(Photos: Michael Jarboe)
Posted by jwoestendiek October 1st, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: air travel, airlines, animals, bam bam, cargo, death, dog, dogs, heat, hold, houston, layover, mastiff, michael jarboe, neapolitan mastiff, necropsy, pets, travel, united, united airlines
Onion, the dog that killed a one-year-old boy in Nevada, has gotten another reprieve — this time from the state Supreme Court.
The Nevada Supreme Court on Friday approved an emergency petition filed by the Lexus Project, a non-profit group representing the dog, prohibiting the city of Henderson from euthanizing the dog today.
The Lexus Project asked the court Friday to give it time to file a full-scale appeal or to allow at least two weeks to study a 24-page decision of Clark County District Court Judge Joanna Kishner, who refused Thursday to further delay the euthanizing of Onion.
The Supreme Court’s order stated: “We conclude that a temporary stay is warranted pending receipt and consideration of any opposition to the stay motion.” The order, according to the Las Vegas Sun, enjoins ”respondents (City of Henderson) from taking any action against the dog at issue until further order of this court.”
Favoring the stay were Chief Justice Michael Cherry and Justice Mark Gibbons. Justice Nancy Saitta dissented, saying the Lexus Project had not met the criteria for granting a stay.
The victim, Jeremiah Eskew-Skahan, was celebrating his first birthday on April 27 at the home of his grandmother Elizabeth Keller when Onion, a 130-pound Mastiff-Rhodesian ridgeback mix, grabbed the boy by the head and started to shake him. The boy died in the hospital, and the family surrendered Onion to the city.
The Lexus Project initially filed suit and sought a stay to prevent the dog from being euthanized. Judge Kishner ruled against the organization, which then first appealed to the Nevada Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court issued a stay at that time and ordered Kishner to take another look at the case, which resulted in her ruling Thursday that the city be allowed to go ahead with plans to destroy the dog.
Kathy McCarthy, an attorney representing the Lexus Project, said Kishner never notified the Lexus Project of that decision.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 4th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, appeal, boy, clark county, court, destroy, district court, dogs, euthanasia, euthanize, henderson, jeremiah, Jeremiah Eskew-Skahan, joanna kishner, judge, killed, mastiff, mix, nevada, onion, order, pets, put down, spare, stay, supreme court, the lexus project
District Judge Rob Bare issued a restraining order to halt temporarily the scheduled Monday euthanization of the the 6-year-old mastiff-Rhodesian ridgeback mix.
“We’re thrilled,” said Richard Rosenthal, a New York-based lawyer who heads The Lexus Project, a national group that fights to spare dogs from destruction. Lawyers for the organization filed the motion for the temporary restraining order.
Bare scheduled a hearing for Friday morning on whether Onion should die, or get to live out his life at a sanctuary outside Denver that specializes in caring for large aggressive dogs, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported
Rosenthal said he hopes to negotiate with city animal control officials before then to settle the case and spare Onion’s life.
Rosenthal said the Colorado sanctuary has offered to take Onion. “The dog can stay there as long as need be, including the rest of his life, if it turns out there is an aggression issue.”
“Killing the dog will not bring back the baby,” he added.
Fox News in Las Vegas said the injunction came just hours before the dog was scheduled to be put down Tuesday.
Jeremiah Eskew-Shahan was killed late last month when his grandparent’s dog bit him on the head.
The judge’s order allows both sides to negotiate a settlement by Friday morning. Otherwise, the issue will be heard in district court where Judge Joanna Kirshner will make a ruling.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 10th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, attack, bite, child, colorado, court, denver, dogs, euthanasia, jeremiah eskew-shahan, judge, killed, mastiff, mix, nevada, one year old, onion, pets, reprieve, rhodesian, richard rosenthal, ridgeback, rob bare, sanctuary, the lexus project
A group of dog lovers is working to persuade officials in Henderson, Nevada, to spare the life of a mastiff-Rhodesian ridgeback mix who bit and killed a 1-year-old boy last week.
Onion, six years old, is scheduled to be euthanized next week.
“This dog will never harm another soul,” said Les Golden, a Chicago-area dog rescuer who is leading the campaign to spare Onion. “The dog deserves to be saved.”
Golden told the Las Vegas Review Journal that he hopes a flood of supporters calling and emailing Mayor Andy Hafen will persuade him to stay the execution, which could happen Monday or Tuesday after the dog’s 10-day quarantine.
Onion’s family voluntarily gave their pet to animal control officials for euthanization. “For what he did to my son, he deserves to be punished,” father Christopher Shahan said. “I’ve already accepted the fact that he’s dead.”
Jeremiah Eskew-Shahan was attacked by the dog on April 27 after the family had finished celebrating the boy’s first birthday. He crawled over to Onion and grabbed onto the 120-pound dog to help himself stand up, as his family said he had done many times before
Jeremiah’s grandmother, Elizabeth Keller, was leaning over to pick him up when Onion suddenly attacked. Jeremiah’s father and others freed the child about 30 seconds later and he was rushed to a nearby hospital. He died the next day at University Medical Center.
Henderson animal control officers declared Onion vicious, which requires euthanization following the state-mandated quarantine.
“The dog attacked and killed a child,” animal control spokesman Keith Paul said. “It would be irresponsible of us to allow this dog to be adopted out.”
Lisa Kavanaugh, said she would welcome Onion to her 35-acre ranch near Denver called Blue Lion Rescue, where he would remain for the rest of his life.
“If it’s an accident, why not give him a chance?” Kavanaugh said. “He’s never, ever going to get a chance to hurt anybody else.”
Onion had been with the family since he was a puppy and helped Keller through her battle with lung cancer. The dog had never shown aggression toward anyone, family members said.
“I would love him to be in a sanctuary the rest of his life, but what sort of punishment would that be for killing a human being?” the father said.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 7th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animal control, attack, baby, bites, blue lion rescue, calls, campaign, child, dangerous, dog bites, email, euthanasia, euthanized, group, henderson, infant, jeremiah eskew-shahan, killed, les golden, mastiff, mix, nevada, onion, quarantine, rhodesian ridgeback, sanctuary, save, shahan, vicious
The Colorado news anchor bitten on the air last week received 70 stitches and is unable to speak because her mouth is sewn shut.
That’s according to her Facebook page.
Kyle Dyer, morning news anchor for NBC’’s Denver affiliate, KUSA, was doing an in-studio interview with a firefighter and the owner of a dog who had been rescued from a frozen reservoir. When Dyer bent down to kiss the dog, an 85-pound Argentine mastiff, named Max, turned and bit her.
On her Facebook page, she says she spent four hours in surgery, receiving 70 stitches in her upper lip, lower lip and nose.
“I am unable to talk because my mouth is stitched shut to allow for the skin graft to take and get the blood circulating in my lips again.”
Dyer was released from the hospital Thursday.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 15th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: anchor, bit, bite, bitten, denver, dog bite, facebook, frozen, hospital, interview, kusa, Kyle Dyer, lake, lips, mastiff, max, mouth, news, released, rescue, reservoir, sewn, stitches, surgery
(An update to this story can be found here.)
Apparently gunning down stray dogs on the streets wasn’t enough for the dog unfriendly officials of Cumberland County, North Carolina.
Now they want to slay, within 72 hours, every dog that comes into the shelter who is, or appears to be a mix of:
American Staffordshire terrier, Rottweiller, Akita, chow chow, Doberman pinscher, German shepherd, Great Dane, Presa Canario, Siberian husky or mastiff. There’s a convenient catch-all pit bull category as well.
They’re not doing it yet, despite what you may be reading on the misinformation highway.
But they’re talking about it.
The county’s Animal Control Board is recommending that authorities limit the adoption of the above dog breeds, or, as one county official referred to them, ”attack animals.” (Clearly, they haven’t met many Great Danes.)
The idea is only in the discussion stages, but many websites are reporting –erroneously — that the new policy goes into effect today.
“I’ve probably had 1,500 emails,” said John Lauby, director of Cumberland County Animal Control. (Here’s hoping he gets about 150,000 more.)
Lauby told a Fayetteville Observer columnist that misinformation on the Internet led people to believe the county will ban adoption of pit bulls and other breeds starting Monday, and immediately euthanize any members of those breeds in the shelter.
In reality, the county hasn’t taken that medieval step, it’s just considering it.
“We’re looking at a list of animals used as attack animals,” County Commissioner Charles Evans said. “It has been suggested that something needs to be done about those.”
The recommendation would have to make its way through a committe and then require approval by the county commissioners before going into effect. But it’s scheduled to be introduced at a meeting tonight. (6 p.m., at Cumberland County Animal Services, 4704 Corporation Drive, Fayetteville).
Lauby said animal control constantly receives calls from residents complaining about dogs behaving aggressively or running loose, preventing people from getting into their cars.
“We have an inordinate number of pit bulls in the county that are chasing people, chasing dogs, they’re on school grounds and generally bother people,” he said. “The reality is that about 80 percent of our calls are related to that particular breed.”
Complaints from the public also led Cumberland County to hire an outside contractor to capture stray dogs in and around Fayetteville — a massive roundup that started in August and, at last report, led to more dogs being gunned down than caught alive.
Fayetteville doesn’t have its own animal control department, instead relying on the county office to handle dog-related issues.
As I’ve implied before, that might be part of the problem — the problem, in my view, being not just too many uncontrolled dogs, but too many unenlightened public servants, who see dogs as foes and death as a solution.
Maybe it’s the army base influence. In any event, someone needs to usher Cumberland County into modern times.
In a way, the proposed policy — while it it lists some new ”public enemy” breeds, like the husky, and some returning ones, like the shepherd — would only formalize what’s already common practice in the county.
Since April, Cumberland County Animal Control has taken in nearly 1,300 pit bulls, but only 124 have been adopted. The shelter has taken in 180 Rottweilers since then, only 26 of whom were adopted. Of 96 chow chows received at the shelter since April, 15 have been adopted, according to the Fayetteville Observer.
The rest are euthanized.
Now, some want to make it official, banning the adoption of any of those breeds and guaranteeing a death sentence for all of them, or any mixes thereof — all based on what will likely be, judging from the wisdom they’ve shown so far, an uneducated guess.
In addition to complaints, worries about liability issues are also behind the proposal. The county fears it might be held responsible for any damage done by dogs adopted from its shelter. Most shelters handle that with a simple waiver.
If you’d like to give Cumberland County officials a piece of your mind — and it appears they could use it — continue reading for contact information.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 5th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adoptions, aggressive, akita, american staffordshire terrier, animal control, attack animals, automatically, banned, bans, breed, breeds, bully breeds, captured, chow, contact, cumberland county, death, doberman, erroneous, euthanasia, euthanized, fayetteville, german shepherd, great dane, internet, john lauby, kill, killed, liability, mastiff, north carolina, petitions, pit bulls, pitbulls, presa canario, proposal, purge, reports, rottweiler, shelter, shot, siberian husky, strays, three days
Old Blue passed away a few years ago in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
New Blue, a cloned copy of the original — a mastiff-Great Dane mix — is now 12 weeks old and, according to his veterinarian, thriving.
The dog’s unidentified owner paid $100,000 for the genetic duplicate, which was produced in a laboratory in South Korea.
You can see a story and video about Blue on KOAT, but its a bit off the mark when it estimates there are seven dog clones living in the U.S. It’s actually closer to 25.
The story doesn’t mention the name of the South Korean company that cloned the dog, or that of the dog’s owner.
An American company, which has since gone out of business, brought at least 17 cloned dogs into the U.S. Those clonings were performed by Hwang Woo Suk, the scientist, who, after leading the team that cloned the world’s first dog, Snuppy, was fired from Seoul National University for falsifying results of human embryo research. He went on to open his own lab, Sooam Institute, which has cloned scores, if not hundreds, of dogs.
A second South Korean company, RNL Bio, continues to market the service, and is cloning dogs for bereaved pet owners, laboratory use and government duties, such as providing security at Seoul’s Incheon Airport.
The history and ethics of dog cloning, and the marketing of the service to pet owners — which began before the first dog was even cloned — are recounted in my book, “DOG, INC: The Uncanny Story of Cloning Man’s Best Friend,” soon to be available in paperback.
As for Blue, his local veterinarian, Dr. David Caffey reports, “he has a great personality” and is in good health.
Caffey revealed few details about the dog’s owner, and called the cloning ”a special situation.”
Posted by jwoestendiek October 31st, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, blue, book, clone, cloned, cloned dogs, clones, cloning, dead, dog clones, dog inc., dogs, genetics, great dane, mastiff, mix, new blue, old blue, pets, reproduction, RNL Bio, science, snuppy, south korea
Moose, the bull mastiff who was mistakenly put up for adoption after biting a child at the Kendall County animal control shelter in Illinois, was euthanized yesterday morning.
Moose bit a 6-year-old boy at the county animal shelter in Yorkville on July 3, and the head of Kendall County animal control told officials the dog was euthanized after that incident.
Last week, though, it was revealed that the shelter accidentally euthanized the wrong bull mastiff, and that Moose was adopted by a couple in nearby LaSalle County. When officials found out Friday that Moose was still alive, the animal control administrator was put on leave, and officials asked the family to return the dog.
Moose was returned and euthanized yesterday, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Moose, who had bitten two people before biting the boy, had bitten another person since he was adopted — a neighbor of the couple that adopted him.
After initially telling officials and reporters the dog had been euthanized, the director of animal control, Christine Johnson, admitted Friday at a special meeting of the Kendall County Board’s animal control committee that he had not been.
Johnson was placed on administrative leave after the meeting, and her future employment is scheduled to be discussed today.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 2nd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopted, animal control, animal shelter, animals, bit, bite, bitten, bull mastiff, christine johnson, director, dogs, euthanasia, euthanized, illinois, kendall county, mastiff, mistake, moose, pets, put down, shelter, shelters