It’s one thing for police officers not to offer any help to a suffering dog. It’s another — and maybe even more shameful — for them to prohibit a citizen from doing so.
That’s what happened in Denver last week.
A dog hit by a car spent 90 minutes gasping for air and died as police investigated the accident. A citizen who tried to help the dog was shooed away by an officer and told he was impeding their investigation.
Apparently police considered the dog evidence, as opposed to a living thing. Apparently, protocol was more important than saving his life, or putting him out of his misery.
Video shows the dog, which had a collar and leash but no tags, laying in the middle of Federal Boulevard for nearly 90 minutes, Channel 7 in Denver reported.
Ross Knapp, a bystander who sought to help the dog and bring him water, says he was threatened with being arrested.
“I had one of the officers tell me I had to leave and couldn’t be near it. I tried a couple of times to go back and he just finally said I’m impeding on an investigation and if I came back I’d be arrested,” Knapp said.
Channel 7 reports 15 minutes passed before police called animal control, and that it took the animal control officer an additional 60 minutes to arrive.
“It’s always about the personal safety of that individual. It’s not trying to be cruel to the animal or cruel to the individual. It’s best if we get the animal control people in there, let them do what they do as experts and let them take the actions,” said Denver Police Department spokesman Sonny Jackson.
“I recognized Harley … I watched the video a couple of times and had others watch it hoping that somebody would say it’s just not him,” Juras said.
Juras contacted Denver Animal Control and confirmed Saturday morning that the dog seen in the 7NEWS video was her missing lab. Now she wants the officer who ignored her dog’s suffering to be held accountable.
“This animal was neglected and neglected by somebody that’s supposed to be there for your safety, supposed to take care of us in times like this,” Juras said.
Denver Police, in response to growing public indignation about the incident, posted a YouTube video in which a veterinarian and animal control officer explain why it’s best to wait for professionals to handle an injured animal.
Meanwhile, an online petition demanding an apology from the police department had nearly 8,000 signatures Sunday night.
Among them is that of Juras, who said she signed the petition before she even knew it was about her dog.
(Photo: Harley with his owner, Dani Juras / provided by Juras family)
Posted by John Woestendiek April 14th, 2014 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: accident, aide, animal control, animals, arrest, assistance, car, citizen, dani juras, delay, denver, died, dogs, emergencies, gasping, harley, helping, injured animals, lab, law enforcement, mix, neglected, petition, pets, police, policies, protocol, response, struck, suffered, threatened, warned
Did an Oklahoma police officer laugh after he shot and killed a family’s pit bull?
That’s what at least one witness reportedly told the dog’s owner.
Sarah Brown says a neighbor witnessed the March 19 shooting of her dog, Cali, by an officer with a shotgun.
After the shooting, she said, the neighbor heard the officer remark to an animal control officer at the scene, “Did you see the way her collar flew into the air when I blew her head off? That was awesome.”
The officer laughed after making the remark, the witness said in a statement provided to KFOR.
A Change.org petition identified the officer as Brice Woolley, of the Ardmore Police Department.
Police were responding to a call about a loose dog behaving aggressively near a park, and officials say the dog was shot to protect the public, KFOR reported.
“It was determined that the dog had to be euthanized for the safety of the nearby park and neighborhood as the dog’s owner could not be located, nor could it be captured,” a police report on the incident stated.
That — minus any immediate danger — would seem to make the police officer animal behaviorist, judge, jury and executioner, for what he dispensed surely can’t be described as “euthanasia.”
And his comment afterwards — if reported correctly — should earn him a desk job, far away from the public he says he was protecting.
Brown said her two-year-old dog, while she’s jumped over the fence and gotten loose before, has never behaved aggressively.
Police Capt. Eric Hamblin said that the officer has received death threats since the shooting, and that a review of the incident showed he acted according to protocol. He remains on duty.
“I don’t think it’s prudent, I don’t think it’s wise to wait until a dog who’s acting aggressive to actually bite somebody,” Hamblin said.
Posted by John Woestendiek March 26th, 2014 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal control, animals, ardmore, cali, cops, dogs, facebook, justice 4 cali, justice for cali, killed, killing, laugh, laughed, law enforcement, oklahoma, petition, pets, pit bull, police, shooting, shot, shotgun
Sheena’s former guardian, identified only as Gayle, surrendered the dog to the North Utah Valley Animal Shelter (NUVAS) in hopes of finding her a new home, according to the PETA Files
Sheena wasn’t getting along with another dog in the house and Gayle could not afford to keep three large dogs.
After surrendering Sheena, Gayle, visited the dog several times at the shelter in Lindon, Utah, to make sure that she was being cared for. One day, though, when Gayle called to check on the dog, she was told Sheena was gone.
Shelter staff informed her that Sheena had been sold to the University of Utah, and declined to say much beyond that.
Gayle contacted the university to determine whether Sheena was still alive, then called PETA’s emergency hotline, which informed her that NUVAS regularly sells dogs — some of them the same ones they feature on their website as cute, cuddly and adoptable — to the university for use in medical experiments.
According to PETA, dogs recently purchased by the university from the animal shelter have had holes cut into their chests and necks, and pacemakers implanted onto their hearts in order to induce irregular heartbeats; the dogs were then killed and dissected.
(A PETA petition urging the shelter’s board of directors to cease the practice can be signed here.)
Gayle called the university and demanded her dog back, and with assistance from PETA found a foster home where Sheena will stay until a permanent home can be found.
(Photo: Courtesy of PETA)
Posted by John Woestendiek December 23rd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, dogs, experiment, experimentation, experiments, foster, laboratories, medical, north utah valley animal shelter, nuvas, people for the ethical treatment of animals, peta, petition, pets, rescue, sells, sheena, shelter, sold, surgical, university of utah, vivisection
Wait a minute, aren’t footballs made of pigskin?
Actually, no. They were intitially made with pig bladders, but those days are long gone. They are still made with leather, though, and an estimated 35,000 cowhides a year are used to make NFL footballs, according to a New York Times blog.
Of course, those 35,000 cows aren’t slaughtered to make footballs, but they are slaughtered to make meat, with their hides then being used to make footballs.
Probably, if one wanted to try hard enough, they could find some hypocrisy here, especially considering the tagline of the new PETA ad is, “Ink Not Mink: Be comfortable in your own skin and let animals keep theirs.” On top of that, probably even more cowhides are used to make official NFL leather jackets.
Then again, given Ochocinco’s admirable abs, and the fact that a football is the only thing covering his privates, I doubt the focus of most people will be on such a teeny tiny possible double standard as this: Killing animals for their skin is wrong, but separating dead animals, killed for other purposes, from their skin is OK?
Given the ill will between the NFL and much of the animal welfare community — especially after convicted dogfighter Michael Vick was invited back to the league — Ochocinco’s public service ad is still a huge step, unless you’re a cow, in the right direction.
“To tell you the truth, when I was younger growing up, I thought it was all fake … they didn’t really kill animals,” Ochocinco says in the ad. When he found out how animals are killed for their skins, “he really wanted to become a part of this campaign,” PETA says. “Animals killed for their fur endure tremendous pain and suffering before being turned into coats, hats or used as fur trim. Foxes, minks, rabbits even dogs and cats are bludgeoned, stomped, electrocuted, and gassed to death. and sometimes skinned while alive.”
Ochocinco, PETA notes, is “known for making superstar plays on—and off—the field. He hosts a football show with fellow Bengals teammate Terrell Owens called the T. Ocho Show and has set multiple franchise records for the team. He charmed viewers on season 10 of Dancing With the Stars and captured the hearts of lucky ladies on his own VH1 dating show The Ultimate Catch. This NFL legend is everywhere…and is now showing off everything! Chad, an avid animal lover, posed nude for PETA’s iconic ‘Ink, Not Mink’ campaign to protest the cruel fur industry and prove that he’d rather go naked than wear fur.”
You can back Chad’s new cause by signing a PETA petition.
Posted by John Woestendiek December 2nd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ad, advertisement, animal welfare, animals, chad ochocinco, cincinnati bengals, cowhide, football, footballs, fur, ink not mink, leather, national football league, nfl, ochocinco, people for the ethical treatment of animals, peta, petition, pigskin, public service annoucement, skin, wide receiver
A judge in Pennsylvania has rejected a Pittsburgh-area man’s petition to change his name from Gary Guy Mathews to “Boomer the Dog.”
Mathews, 44, is an unemployed computer technician and a follower of the ”furry” lifestyle, which celebrates giving human characteristics to animals. He sought the name change because he’s a big fan of the short-lived 1980s NBC show “Here’s Boomer.”
His obsession with the Boomer character led him to create a giant dog costume made from shredded newspaper, which he now wears at home and to conventions.
Common Pleas Court Judge Ronald W. Folino, after hearing Mathews request Tuesday, denied it on Wednesday on the grounds it could cause confusion and possibly put “the public welfare at risk,” according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
The denial, which came in a page and a half-ruling, sounded almost as convoluted as the request:
What if, the judge wrote, Boomer the Dog witnessed a serious auto accident and telephoned police? “The dispatcher on the phone queries as to the caller’s identity, and the caller responds, ‘This is Boomer the Dog.’ It is not a stretch to imagine the telephone dispatcher concluding that the call is a prank and refusing to send an emergency medical response.”
“Right now I’m not sure what I’m going to do next, I’ll just have to look into it,” Mathews said after the decision. “All I know is that I’ve been trying to realize my identity for a long time, like many people have I guess.”
Furries, the Post-Gazette reports, have become fairly common around Pittsburgh, which for five years has hosted the movement’s largest annual convention.
Posted by John Woestendiek August 12th, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, boomer, boomer the dog, conventions, court, denial, denies, dog, dogs, furries, furry, gary guy mathews, gary mathews, here's boomer, judge, law, lifestyle, name, name change, ohmidog!, petition, pets, pittsburgh, ronald w. folino, show, television, tv
A pastor in Dallas who apparently thinks that “do unto others” stuff doesn’t apply to canines is drawing criticism for how he’s handling the matter of a stray dog who has taken up residence behind the church.
For several months now, local rescuers have been trying to help the dog and animal control officials have been trying to capture it. That’s not good enough for the pastor, who reportedly says he plans to hire someone to shoot it, and who scolded a 70-year-old woman who showed up to feed it.
Let’s stop for a moment and ponder who’s acting in a more Godly manner here.
Pastor Joseph Stabile says the dog is aggressive to parishioners of the Cochran Chapel United Methodist Church, at Midway and Northwest Highway. Others dispute that, saying the dog is shy and avoids people, according to a report by Examiner.com’s animal rescue blogger Rebecca Poling in Dallas, who is also a member of the Metroplex Animal Coalition, one of the organizations raising questions about the pastor’s behavior.
Poling points out that no parishioners have come forward to back up the pastor’s claim the dog is aggressive.
Dallas Animal Services has tried to capture the dog, even using a tranquilizer gun at one point. A group of well-intentioned dog lovers have joined in the cause, trying to humanely catch the dog, known as John Wesley, but he continues to elude everyone.
The group has started a Facebook page, a Care2 petition and has written letters to church and city officials. They also plan Sunday morning protests outside the church to let parishioners know what their pastor is doing.
Posted by John Woestendiek July 16th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal control, animal services, animal welfare, animals, church, cochran chapel, dallas, dog, joseph, methodist, metroplex animal coalition, news, pastor, petition, pets, protests, rebecca poling, stabile, stray, texas
Proposed by Ronald “Byron” Williams, and still requiring the city’s approval, the initiative would go on the ballot in November if Williams is able to collect 4,000 signatures on petitions.
“We’re considered to be an extremely dog-friendly city, and we need to live up to that and do something about it,” Williams told the Denver Daily News.
Williams began work on the initiative after becoming frustrated with the lack of dog parks in Denver. He believes designated leash free hours would be a good compromise, allowing dogs some time romp off leash while not significantly impacting those using the parks for other reasons.
The city considered and scrapped a similar plan earlier after complaints from nearby neighborhood groups.
Denver is now working on a “dog park master plan,” a final version of which is expected to be approved this month.
“ The plan would implement a fee for existing dog parks, use that money to pay for additional park rangers who could write tickets for people who illegally have their dogs off-leash, and identify possible new areas that could be used for off-leash dog parks,” the Daily News reported.
At first glance, that seems more like plan to build revenue than to provide some running room for dogs.
Williams initiative, if approved, would likely lead to more immediate, and less expensive, results and make Denver — except for that nasty pit bull ban — a dog-friendlier city.
Posted by John Woestendiek May 20th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, city, denver, designated, dog parks, dogs, hours, initiative, master plan, news, off-leash, ohmidog!, parks, petition, pets, recreation, regulations, rules, unleashed
The dog was discovered last month in Bakersfield. The dog’s owner James Worley, 52, has been arrested and faces a possible charge of felony animal cruelty.
The pitbull, who has been named England after the animal control officer who saved him, Kristen England, was placed into a new home on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, a petition asking the District Attorney’s office to prosecute the dog’s owner to the fullest extent the law allows has received almost 1,000 signatures.
The petition was started April 26 by Karen Marousek, of the Friends of the Kern County Animal Shelters Foundation, according to the Bakersfield Californian.
As of Wednesday morning, more than 1,000 signatures had been gathered. The petitions will be presented to the prosecutor and judge handling the case.
Worley, 52, was arrested on suspicion of felony animal cruelty on April 26. An arraignment is scheduled for Friday in Lamont.
The Jason Debus Heigl Foundation was founded by Katherine Heigl and her mother Nancy Heigl in memory of Jason Debus Heigl, Katherine’s brother. It rescues dogs and works to increase awareness of inhumane treatment to animals.
The Heigls, officials from the group Last Chance For Animals and Kern County Animal Control Director Guy Shaw held a press conference in Los Angeles Tuesday.
(Photo: England, as he was found; courtesy of Kern County Animal Control)
Posted by John Woestendiek May 5th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, animal control, animal cruelty, animals, bakersfield, california, dogs, england, field, foundation, friends of the kern county animal shelters foundation, heigl, hogtied, home, james worley, jason debus heigl foundation, karen marousek, katherine heigl, kern county, kristen england, last chance for animals, news, ohmidog!, petition, pets, pit bull, pitbull, rescue
News that Michael Vick is expected to attend the 32nd annual Ed Block Courage Awards dinner in Baltimore Tuesday has led to a change in the ceremony’s format and an increase in security.
Vick, who was convicted in 2007 of running a dogfighting ring, is one of 32 winners to be honored with the award, which singles out one member of each NFL team for his courage, sportsmanship and inspiration to his community.
Vick’s unanimous selection by his Philadelphia Eagles teammates triggered angry e-mails to the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation, a petition drive and a planned protest by dog lovers and animal welfare activists at the award’s ceremony, to be held at Martin’s West, 6817 Dogwood Road, from 4 to 10 p.m.
More than 100 people have already signed up to protest at the event — a number that could grow as a result of the news that the quarterback will be attending.
In addition to scrapping the long-standing tradition of having the athletes mingle with fans and sign autographs, organizers say they are boosting security, according to the Baltimore Sun.
“We’ve put in place enough [guards] to make sure that our players are safe and that everything runs smoothly.”said Ed Block Courage Award Foundation spokesman Paul Mittermeier.
The Block Award is named for a former team trainer of the Baltimore Colts, who worked for years to help abused children.
Criticism for bestowing the award on Vick has come from groups ranging from animal rights activists to the American Kennel Club. “It is unconscionable that a man who tortured and abused helpless animals be honored by an organization dedicated to ending abuse,” the AKC said.
Vick will be accompanied to the event by Michael Markarian, chief operating officer of the Humane Society of the United States, a group for which the quarterback has made public appearances in recent months, attempting to steer youth away from dogfighting.
Posted by John Woestendiek March 5th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abuse, award, baltimore, ceremony, convicted, conviction, courage, courage award, demonstration, dogfighter, dogfighting, ed block, foundation, honor, increased, inspiration, martin's west, michael vick, news, petition, philadelphia eagles, protest, quarterback, security, sportsmanship, vick, vick protest
Steven Clay Romero and his sister were indicted late Monday in connection with the dragging death of Buddy, a stolen German shepherd mix who was pulled by a rope attached to a pick-up truck for miles at Colorado National Monument.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the National Park Service announced the indictments today against 37-year-old Romero, of Grand Junction, and his sister, 32-year-old Melissa Marie Lockhart of Fruita, according to the Denver Post.
Romero is already in federal custody and an arrest warrant was issued for Lockhart.
The federal indictment alleges Romero knowingly tortured and needlessly mutilated and killed the dog by dragging it behind a vehicle for three miles at the Colorado National Monument sometime between Dec. 29 and 30.
The indictment says Lockhart knew about the crime between Dec. 30 and 31, but concealed it by making false statements to law enforcement, and failed to report it.
Romero faces one count of aggravated animal cruelty, punishable, if convicted, by up to three years in federal prison and up to a $100,000 fine. Lockhart is additionally charged with stealing Buddy and another dog, and faces up to three years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine, if convicted.
The case is in federal court because the crime is alleged to have occurred in a national park.
(For our previous posts on Buddy, click here.)
Posted by John Woestendiek January 26th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animals, buddy, colorado, colorado national monument, cruelty to animals, death, dog, dogs, drag, dragged, dragging, federal, german shepherd, indicted, justice for buddy, melissa lockhart, petition, pets, pick-up truck, rope, steven clay romero, steven romero, stolen, torture, u.s. attorney, warrant