Monday, February 4, 2013

Is It Open Season on Pit Bulls?

If you are on any of the social media outlets or listening to the news you’ve heard about the blatant assault on pit bulls. In the month of January alone there has been a minimum of 12 incidents in which police have shot and killed several dogs. The latest incident happened in Philadelphia, PA where a person picked up a stray dog, put the dog in the back of the vehicle where another dog was and a fight ensued. The person was unable to separate the dogs and decided to call the police. When the police arrived they immediately started shooting which ended with both dogs being killed.  Another well publicized incident was where a pregnant woman was locked out of her house.  She feared something had happened to her husband so she called the police.  By the time the police arrived at the home the woman’s husband who was in the house sleeping opened the door. The pit bull dogs were excited to see their female guardian and as most dogs do they greeted their guardian excitedly.  The trigger happy officer asked the very pregnant woman to get her dog. The woman attempted to oblige when the officer opened fire shooting both dogs. One dog fled and the other dog died in his guardians arms. Another incident was where a police officer opened fire on 5 CAGED dogs in an animal shelter citing “he feared for his life.” The dogs were caged so what was there to fear other than fear and ignorance?  There are many more stories such as these which beg the question is it open season on pit bulls? Are pit bulls that feared it warrants an officer who’s suppose to be calm and assertive to take his/her gun out and start shooting without assessing the situation? Don’t they deal with people who can and have shot, stabbed and, beat them yet very few of these criminals are shot and killed by the police. Yes, a dog of any breed can and has caused damage to people and other dogs.  We’re not negating the potential damage a pit bull can cause however, in any of the cases we’ve spoken about in this blog and many others the dogs were not the aggressor. The incident where the person picked up the “stray” dog and put it in the back of the vehicle didn’t make the smartest decision. In many of the cases the officer will say “they didn’t have a choice” as our grandfather, a former Marine, told us “you always have a choice, both choices can look bad but one is better than the other.” With that being said the choice should always be to refer back to training and assess the situation. Most officers do not receive more training after they leave the police academy which is a travesty in itself. Many trainers have offered training at a reduced price or free of charge to better equip officers in the field when they’re answering a “dangerous” dog on the loose call. How many more families have to endure the loss of their beloved pet or be afraid of the police when walking their dog because of the “breed?” As a community lets come together to end the senseless violence against our pets and “stray” animals.

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