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Tag: spray paint

I see a problem and I want it painted orange

orange poop 1

Dog poop is being spray painted bright orange on some forest trails in Oregon to increase public awareness of the problem — as if stepping in it doesn’t make you aware enough.

The campaign from the Oregon State University College of Forestry and local veterinarians is aimed at showing the amount of dog waste owners are leaving behind, and the potential ecological problems that could result.

Both of those are real enough concerns. But — not to question the noble efforts of organizers and volunteers — does spray painting something orange really solve anything?

If so, there are a few things (coming up in a minute) that I want to spray paint orange.

“We’ve been getting dozens of complaints from people noticing the increasing amount of poop on the trails and it’s been getting worse the last couple of years,” explained Ryan Brown, recreation and engagement program manager for OSU Research Forests. “We’re all dog lovers and dog owners and walkers of these trails and we know the opportunity to have dogs out here is super important to the community of Corvallis. And 99 percent of them are really careful and clean up after their dogs. But we want people to be aware that this is causing a lot of problems.”

“There are stream ecology studies happening in the waterways along Oak Creek and anything that gets into the water can drastically change the ecology,” Brown added. “That isn’t natural and it can really throw off the health of the streams and cause certain organisms to grow that aren’t natural to the area.”

So on Saturdays for the past month or so, volunteers had been spray painting any piles of dog poop they spot on trails with heavy duty orange paint, which really isn’t natural either.

Later — in theory, after the orange piles have made their point — volunteers return to pick up the day-glo messes.

orange poop 2On Saturday, about 20 volunteers picked up around 1,000 piles of poop at Oak Creek, Peavy Arboretum, Lewisburg Saddle and Calloway Creek trail, the Seattle Times reported.

I thank them for their service, but I would also note that pollution and annoyances comes in all shapes, sizes and consistencies, from all sorts of human sources, and they regularly taint our air, water and peaceful existence.

Should those get painted orange as well?

What about those signs of political candidates who leave them up for weeks, or months, after the election?

What about the ringing cellphones of people in a theater?

What about those robots who work for companies that call YOU up and ask YOU to hold for an actual representative?

What about utility and credit card companies who, while urging you to go paperless and thereby save trees, send you through the mail pounds of paperwork, credit applications, loan offers, advertising and pamphlets touting themselves?

And, while we’re at it, what about the car windshields of non-handicapped people who park in handicapped spaces, and presidential candidates who spread hate? What about handguns, or maybe just their barrels, and all the lies and bullshit spewed in the course of an average day.

Paint them all orange, I say. You know what that will bring us?

A still troubled, very orange world.

(Photo: Top photo Albany Democrat-Herald)

Ace adds his tag to Cadillac Ranch

In 1973, Stanley Marsh 3, with help form a San Francisco artists’ collective known as the Ant Farm, partially buried ten used Cadillacs in the ground — head first, with their hind ends jutting into the air — at his ranch just west of Amarillo.

And called it art, which, of course, it was.

Collectively, the Cadillacs, ranging in model years from 1948 to 1963, were meant to represent the “Golden Age” of American automobiles.

Tourists — at least those with an appreciation for offbeat — have been dropping by ever since, and in more recent years, they’ve been adding their own touches, with spray paint, which by now, is probably an inch or so thick.

For a while, the cars displayed their original paint jobs – but it didn’t take long before people started scratching in their initials, or painting their names on the cars, or, worse yet, breaking their windows and stealing their innards, like radios and speakers.

Marsh has no problem with the public input. “We think it looks better every year,” he has been quoted as saying.

In 1997, as Amarillo spread, the Cadillac Ranch was dug up and reburied about two miles to the west. Marsh insisted that, in addition to the cars, the old site’s trash — spray cans mostly — be gathered and spread at the new location.,

In 2005, the Cadillacs were painted pink in a tribute to breast cancer victims. Since then, every conceivable color has been added, and the number of spray paint cans littering the site has grown.

Cadillac Ranch is not to be confused with Carhenge, in Alliance Nebraska, where Jim Reinders sought to duplicate Stonehenge — only with 38 junk cars. It opened in 1987.

Our stop at Cadillac Ranch was a quick one. Dozens of visitors were coming in and out, across the dusty pasture in which it sits, many of them having added their mark with spray paint. Some bring their own, some just find leftovers in the spray cans that litter the site.

It was extremely hot, and Ace was only interested in two things — finding some shade and, of course, leaving his tag on the monument. Anything that rises out of the ground, as Ace sees it, is fair game.

Dogs, you see, were the original graffiti artists — making their marks, claiming their turf, spraying, so to speak, long before the first human picked up an aerosol can.

Ace’s tag will remain, invisibly, at Cadillac ranch, probably for longer than most of the graffiti that was being added earlier this week — noticed only by future dogs who take the time to sniff.

They, being fellow dogs, will recognize the work of a true artist. Brilliant, they will think to themselves … ahead of his time … groundbreaking.

Then they will pee on his pee.

(“Dog’s Country” is the continuing tale of one man and one dog spending six months criss-crossing America)

Boys, 10 and 12, charged with dogfighting

Two boys — aged 10 and 12 — have been charged with fighting, baiting and cruelty to animals after deputies say they discovered the boys were operating a backyard dogfighting operation.

A neighbor called deputies in Orange County after the boys dumped a dead dog on his property. When deputies arrived to ask one of them about the allegations cops say the boy picked up a puppy and started beating it until deputies forced him to stop, according to Fox News in Orlando.

Three dogs were taken from the property after they were found covered with wounds, spray painted and living in unhealthy conditions.

Man who spray-painted dog found not guilty

A contractor who spray-painted a dog who barked at him was found not guilty of animal cruelty by a DeKalb County State Court jury yesterday.

Dario Harris maintained he was afraid of the black lab mix, named Bear — and worried that, even though the dog was in a fenced backyard, it could have jumped the fence and attacked him, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Harris was marking utility lines with fluorescent orange paint outside Jeffrey Tompkins’ Stone Mountain home.

In an interview before the trial, Harris said he loves dogs and “was just trying to protect myself.”

“You have to look at what’s reasonable under the circumstances,” said Harris’ attorney, Gerald Griggs. “The jury got to hear his actual intentions that day.  There were two dogs, both weighing over 60 pounds, jumping at a fence. You don’t know if they were nice dogs or mean dogs. He did not intend to injure Bear in any form or fashion. He was just scared.”

Harris wants to pay the veterinary bill, Griggs added.

Solicitor Robert James said he was disappointed in the verdict. “This is not going to change the way we do things in DeKalb County,” he said. “We take animal abuse very seriously, it’s wrong, and we’re going to continue to stand up for pet owners and animals, continue to hold people accountable.”

Vick mural in Philly shows him choking dog

vickmural

 
A mural has appeared on the side of a tire store in Philadelphia, depicting Michael Vick in his new Eagles uniform, choking a dog in a Dallas Cowboys uniform.

The mural is painted on the side of a shop called “Tires ‘R’ Us” in Philadelphia’s Kensington section. A photo was taken and uploaded to Flickr by k.vonponyfeather.

Vick, who served an 18-month federal prison sentence for dogfighting, made his return to the NFL last night.

Contractor charged with spray painting dog

A Georgia prosecutor says he intends to aggressively prosecute a contractor who allegedly sprayed fluorescent orange paint on a barking black lab mix that was in a fenced backyard.

“To spray paint a dog in the eye makes no sense,” DeKalb County Solicitor Robert James told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution yesterday. “It was gratuitous. The animal was behind a fence. Its really something we take serious and were going to try to make this thing right. We’re going to take this very seriously.”

Dario Harris appeared in DeKalb County State Court Tuesday on two counts of animal cruelty, a charge that could mean as much as 12 months in jail.

Harris was dispatched in March to mark gas lines in preparation for scheduled digging along the residential street. A homeowner, Jeffrey Tompkins, heard his dog, Bear, barking and then saw a truck driving away. A few minutes later, he found his dog rubbing her eyes with her front paws.

Tompkins said there were “seven individual spray marks” low on the fence about the height of the dog’s eyes.

“It wasn’t like he just sprayed one time across [ the fence],” Tompkins said in an interview Wednesday. “He [Harris] went up to the fence. He had no reason to go in the backyard.”

Harris said he “reacted to the dog coming to the gate and scaring me. It wasn’t anything intentional. I wasn’t out to do any harm. I was just doing my job.”

A vet flushed Bear’s eyes and provided antibiotics, and Harris said he would repay Tompkins for those expenses.

“This is making me out to be a criminal,” Harris said. “I’m not.”

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.