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Tag: penalty

No way, Jose: Another reason to hate soccer

It’s unfair to cast aspersions on an entire sport because of the actions of just one player.

Then again, it’s unfair to pick a dog up by the neck and hurl it into the stands.

That’s what Enzo Jose Jimenez  did when a dog wandered onto the field in a minor league match between his Bella Vista team and the San Juan team in the Tucuman province of Argentina.

A referee flashed a red penalty card and the player was expelled from the game.

We’d like to see him expelled from the team, the league, the sport and, at least for a year or two, from free society.

Fox Sports de Argentina broadcast images on Tuesday showing the player using both hands to grab the mid-size black-and-white dog by the neck and throw it toward the bleachers.

The dog struck a chain-link fence, but quickly got up and ran away with no injuries, or at least no apparent ones.

There are no reports of any charges being filed against the player, but it’s being reported that the soccer club terminated Jimenez’s contract yesterday.

Club Sportivo Bella Vista, issued a statement last night calling his actions “incomprehensible” (assuming this translation is correct) and saying he had been kicked off the team.

Jury wants 10-year sentence for dogfighter

A jury in Richmond has found Richard E. Robinson guilty and recommended a 10-year prison sentence — the longest prison term in Virginia’s history for a dogfighting conviction.

The jury deliberated two hours yesterday to reach its verdict, only 40 more minutes before coming back with a recommendation of 10 years in prison and a $2,500 fine, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.

Robinson, 32, was found guilty of three felonies and one misdemeanor related to a dogfighting operation at his South Richmond home.

Richmond prosecutors and animal-control authorities said they are unaware of any dogfighting sentences in Virginia longer than four years. The 10-year sentence, if upheld by Circuit Court Judge Beverly W. Snukals, would be twice as long as any handed down in the state, and more than five times longer than Michael Vick’s federal sentence. Formal sentencing is scheduled for March 5.

The conviction and sentence recommendation came after prosecutor Alex Taylor introduced evidence from the property where Robinson lived with his mother, including heavy chains that had been tied around the necks of dogs to help them build strength.

One of the chains weighed 52 pounds — more than the dog to whom it was attached. The prosecutors brought the chain to court in a red plastic bucket, and while arguing for a lengthy sentence, Taylor carried the pail over to the jury box and dropped it with a thud.

“This,” he said, “is no way to treat man’s best friend.”

Read more »

Bad taste: Poop poster proving effective

kidandpoopRepulsive as they are, posters showing a small girl consuming a brown substance while seated in the grass next to a pile of dog poop seem to be working, according to officials in Torbay, England.

Torbay Council launched the controversial campaign at the end of April, according to the BBC.

Since then, the amount of dog waste not cleaned up has dropped by half

That’s according to Councillor Dave Butt — (please hold your sophomoric giggling until the end of the story) — a cabinet member for community services. He said there were more than 400 ”incidents” in April, but only 185 in June. (Apparently Torbay conducts a monthly census of dog droppings.)

Butt said there had been no complaints about the posters, which are six feet high and contain an image in which a young child at a playground appears to be eating dog feces

The posters were displayed in local bus shelters and dog mess offenders were warned about the penalty which is a fine of up to £1,000.

Butt told BBC News: “The poster was rather unpleasant, but helped drive the message home very forcibly. “We did not have any complaints, but we did have people ringing us to say it was about time and they were pleased we went in so hard.”

Plans call for campaign to continue, with the message being spread to schools and community groups.

“We are not against dog owners, we are against people that ignore safety and health issues,” Butt said.

Torbay, a popular tourist destination, is located on the Lyme Bay in western England in an area known as the English Riviera.

Say Chow (or ciao) to those $1,000 fines

 

Baltimore’s $1,000 fine for letting a dog of its leash is, effectively, a thing of the past — if even that.

A city council committee yesterday — saying the amended penalty was passed by mistake — approved lowering the fine to $200 on a first offense, and promised that, for all 35 of the $1,000 tickets issued between the beginning of April and May 8, violators will have to pay no more than $200.

The new three-tiered fine — $200 for first offense, $400 for a second, $600 for a third — still requires approval by the full council, but little opposition is expected.

In opening the hearing, at which more than a dozen dog owners testified, Council Member James Kraft said, “This fine, very frankly … was a mistake. We were amending provisions of the law that were dealing with cruelty to animals and we increased penalties because some of these penalties were very old penalties. They weren’t acting as deterrents.

“Inadvertently, because that section had a lot of other provisions in it, that thousand dollar fine went across a much broader spectrum than we knew.”

Upon learning of what they had done, Kraft said, the council took steps to ask that the fine not be levied against violators.

Nevertheless, 35 $1,000 citations were handed out by the city’s office of Animal Control, with support from the police department — 23 of them since April 28.

“For those who have said that maybe this was a fundraising measure on behalf of the city, please be advised it clearly was not,” Kraft said.

Read more »

Bark now, or forever hold your leash

 

Dogs bark when something’s amiss. We humans sign petitions. The time has come to do a little of both.

Not to many working people have the leeway to attend a 10 a.m. City Council meeting, but for those who can, Tuesday’s meeting in city hall represents a rare opportunity to let city leaders know not just that their $1,000 fine for an off leash dog is out of line, but that the time has come to make this a more dog-friendly city.

How? By coming through with promised dog parks, by instituting off leash hours, at least on an experimental basis at a city park or two, and by not dumping on that substantial population of voters that has dogs.

Petitions calling upon the city to reduce the recently imposed $1,000 fine for letting a dog off its leash are now circulating around town and online. You can find, and sign, the online version here.

At tomorrow’s meeting the city will take up a proposal to reduce the fine. Also introduced will be an amendment authored by council member William Cole that would allow the city’s director of recreation and parks to enact off leash hours at city parks — something that currently can’t be done because of the leash law. Cole’s amendment would exempt city-approved off leash hours from the law.

Of course, that doesn’t mean off leash hours will be approved, only that they can be.

Cole said he expects the fine reduction and the off-leash authorization to eventually be approved by the council.

“Yes, I believe that both will get support for a majority of the Council,” he said. “There appears to be rather broad support for the off-leash language, but I haven’t started counting votes.”

Tuesday’s meeting is a hearing (on Bill 09-0322) before the Judiciary & Legislative Investigations Committee. The committee is chaired by Councilman Jim Kraft, and its other members are Robert Curran, Rikki Spector, Agnes Welch and Cole.

The meeting is in the City Council Chambers on the 4th floor of City Hall. (A picture ID required for admission to City Hall.)

$1,000 fines spur Patterson dog park group

Baltimore city’s new (and under reconsideration) $1,000 fine for unleashed dogs has reinvigorated the long-running effort to establish a dog park in Patterson Park, and the group behind it has called a meeting for Thursday night to assess the situation and seek support.

The Patterson Dog Park Steering Committee has arranged a “meet-and-greet/show of support” at the restaurant Three, located at the corner of E. Baltimore and S. Linwood. The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. and Three has agreed to extend its Happy Hour specials for the crowd that is expected.

“Prior to and especially now in light of the $1,000 off-leash dog fine, the Patterson Dog Park Steering Committee had revitalized our efforts for an established fenced dog park within Patterson Park. We have been receiving a great amount of new support from local community members and would like to introduce ourselves and meet other advocates for a dog park within Patterson Park…” a committee member explained.

Efforts to establish a dog park at Patterson have been going on for at least four years, and serve as a testament to just how difficult the city has made the process — even though the mayor and several council members have spoken of the need for more dog parks.

In a ribbon cutting for the first city-funded dog park at Latrobe Park in Locust Point (the city will pay to build, but not maintain the park, scheduled to open this summer), Mayor Sheila Dixon promised as many as eight dog parks in Baltimore.

Currently, there is only one small and often crowded dog park in Baltimore, Canton Dog Park, which was built and is maintained by a non-profit neighborhood group. It is the only public area in the city where a dog may legally be off leash.

Part of the difficulty in Patterson Park has been the many different communities that surround it – among them Canton, Highlandtown, Patterson Park, Butchers Hill, and Upper Fells Point. While the group has now secured approval from all of them, the project is still opposed by the Friends of Patterson Park.

To learn more about the group, and their plan for a dog park, visit pattersondogpark.org.

Poop, paint and the long arm of the law

In light of news that the fine for not picking up dog waste in Baltimore has gone up to a possible $1,000 per dropping, we scoured the Internet yesterday — ok, maybe we just scanned it — to get some idea of what fines other cities impose for unscooped poop.

We can report that (A) we’re confused, (B) there seems to be a wide variance, (C) one must sometimes wade through a lot of poop on the Internet to get facts, and (D) somebody in New York — likely either a vigilante or a graffiti artist with low self esteem — is going around spray painting unpicked-up poop.

We’re not sure what the penalty for spray painting poop in New York is, but the fine imposed on an owner who doesn’t pick it up is $250. It was increased last year from $100.

Since the $250 penalty was put in place Nov. 7, 2008, about 54 citations a month have been issued — about the same as under the old fine, according to the New York Post.

New York Sanitation Department spokesman Matt Lipani told the Post that the laws, and the penalities, seem to make no difference: “There is absolutely no correlation between the amount of canine-waste summonses the department writes, or the cost of the summonses, and whether or not dog owners pick up after their dogs.”

Moving on to Hoboken, N.J., we can report that the city raised it’s dog poop fines to a maximum of $2,000 in 2007, and also announced plans to publish offending dog owners’ names on the Internet. It’s not clear if either became common practice.

In San Francisco, a city looking into ways of converting poop into methane gas for fuel, the maximum fine for not picking up your dog’s waste is $319.

London hits offenders with fines as high as $700.

In Lafayette, Colorado, one of the few cities I could find that’s kind enough to make the information easy to locate on its website, the fines are $140 to $165 for the first offense, $240 for the second offense and from $340 to $1000 for the third offense.

What stood out most, though, in my foray into feces law, is how hard to find and little-publicized the local ordinances are. Considering their whole purpose is to create a deterrent effect, you’d think more effort would be made — in Baltimore and a lot of other cities — to get that information out.

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