Sad, but true. A letter to the Editor in my local weekly

lilodMay 31, 2009

Tragic Killing

"Homey", a male pitbull, blonde in color with cropped ears and a long tail, is gone.

To the owner(s) of "Homey" I am very sorry, but I had to shoot him. You see, I discovered "Homey" just a few feet away from a very mangled goat - I had to shoot the goat, too. Goats just don't do very well without a tongue or a throat.

I thought about calling you (phone#******)but, I decided the offer of a reward won't work out.

"Homey" and my goat are buried together on a south facing slope. If you would like the leather collar back, I left it at the paper's office.

My deepest condolences on your loss. I know how it feels.

Regards

Your Neighbor

Name withheld at writer's request

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shellm

How tragic.I dont even know what else to say.

Shelley

    Bookmark   May 31, 2009 at 6:06PM
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mazer415

What is sad is that it was all preventable

    Bookmark   May 31, 2009 at 8:06PM
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lilliepad

Well,it is tragic for both the goat and the dog but had it been my goat I have to say I would probably have done the same thing.The dog brutally attacked the goat,caught red handed on the goat owners property (at least I assume it was the goat owner's property).Could have been prevented by the owner of the dog properly containing the dog.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2009 at 10:42PM
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lilod

The owner of the dog had "reward - lost dog" posters all over town - offered $500.00 - but the dog obviously was not properly contained.
I had my goats attacked by roaming dogs - I know what a trauma that is in the middle of the night.
In my case they were Shar-Pei, belonging to someone's visitor who assumed dogs in the country can run free.
Turned out they had killed several goats at different properties, including some rare breed double-horned Navajo goats. Then the dogs were never heard of again ...

    Bookmark   May 31, 2009 at 11:14PM
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quasifish

It is truly sad. Just a week ago my mother and her dog were attacked by 2 pit bulls while taking a walk. They later learned that they were the second attack of the day and the other dog had been killed. Mom and her dog were very lucky, escaping with the help of some pepper spray. Mom escaped unscathed, her dog required surgery and 20+ stitches, but is okay.

I sometimes wonder if people are just too complacent with dogs, particularly breeds with tendencies like this. I had the softest, gentlest labrador retriever, but I never let it escape me that under it all she was still an animal with the potential to do something unexpected and perhaps dangerous. She never did, but I never got complacent.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2009 at 8:54AM
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joepyeweed

Ah its only goat... I think the stray dog should have been allowed to roam free and kill whatever it wants.

(jpw - putting on my TNR hat)

    Bookmark   June 1, 2009 at 10:58AM
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Elly_NJ

JPW, I was just going to post the same thing! Collateral damage.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2009 at 8:14PM
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sue36

A neighborhood dog killed 13 of our 17 chickens. It was a husky that was known to wander the neighborhood with other off leash dogs. My father shot it. I wasn't there (my sister and I got home as my father and sobbing mother cleaned up the carnage of 13 shredded pet chickens). When my father tried to stop the dog it growled at him.

It's not just Pits that are an issue. My sister now owns a Pit that is a sweety. Of course, I've seen many scary ones as well. It seems like they are beginning to outnumber every other type of dog.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 12:36AM
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lisa11310

AAARRRGGGGG when will we get to shoot the idiots instead of the animals? Increasing fines at the pound did not reduce the number of dogs getting lose here...Just the number of dogs whos owners wouldnt pick them back up because it was to much $$. I think "homeys" owners should have to pay for the value of the goat (not that it will bring it back) and also be fined for it roaming. Yup dogs sometimes get loose, even dearly loved well taken care of dogs. I still think owners should be held responsible for any damage done. I will say my Akita mix got loose several times (she was a foster and had been on death row at the pound 2x because she was an escape artist) but I canceled everything, work, etc. to go find her and never came back without her.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2009 at 10:24PM
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moondancer13

to Posted by joepyeweed.Grow up !

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 12:21AM
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joepyeweed

If the shoe fits, wear it!

    Bookmark   June 8, 2009 at 12:51PM
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ms_minnamouse

This is stupid. Dogs occasionally get out. It happens to even the best owners some times. You open the door a crack to sign for a package and your dog pushes past your legs and bolts. Or you let your dog out into your safe fenced yard to go potty and unknown to you, he's been working on a hole under a shrub and finally gets out.
Or a stupid kid lets him out. Any number of things can happen.

And maybe the dog has been away from home for a long time and is starving. You'd wander on to some one's property and kill an animal if you had to to survive if you were a starving dog too.

I'm not saying that's the case this time, I'm just saying it's wrong to make assumptions when you don't know exactly how it is.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2009 at 2:02PM
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janegael

As the mom to one pit bull and one pit mix, I say the owner should have been shot. No animal aggressive dog, of any breed, should ever be allowed loose. I hope the shot was a clean one because it wasn't the dog's fault. God bless the poor little goat, no animal deserves that torment.

Both my pit bulls are safe with other animals. My sweet adorable beagle mix will kill any cat on sight. She will also kill anything else she can catch that isn't a dog. It's one of the reasons I never adopted her out when our rescue was running. I could not be sure that her new family would keep other animals safe from her.

Pits, Staffordshire terriers and other bully breeds have a horrible reputation -- not because they are so aggressive -- but because so many of their owners are idiots. They are the most over-bred dog in the country. If you do a search on Petfinder the only breed with more hits is the Lab. Unstable dogs are being bred for profit and boy, is this country greedy. As always it is the animals who pay the price...and sometimes the humans as well.

Peace,
Jane and the Hole Wall Gang

    Bookmark   June 15, 2009 at 1:28PM
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munkos

It's unfortunate when these things happen - but being the owner of two dogs myself, one a pit mix as well - I would fully understand if either of my dogs got away and killed someone else's animal - that they would do what they have to do.

I would be sad, angry and all sorts of emotions directed in all sorts of places - but ultimately that's what happens.

Yes sometimes dogs do get out - they push past you and bolt, they dig, kids let them out - but all of these are preventable. Our dogs don't go out unsupervised. Period. We let them out to go to the bathroom, and we watch them and keep an eye on them. If they're out to play, we're out there with them. My dogs won't bolt out the door - but there are times the door needs to be open for a longer period of time, and we put them out of the way, just in case.

They're both great with other animals and people - my beagle might go after a mouse if she sees one, but even then as soon as it moved she'd probably run away with her tail tucked - but, you just never know with any dog or animal, what they're capable of. And they should all be treated as animals with the potential to turn back to their instincts and do what animals do.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2009 at 1:58PM
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brutuses

My dogs are obedience trained and would never "bolt" out the door. Twenty one years ago I adopted a little dog form the shelter and that's what he did. He promptly went to obedience school and the behavior stopped. Dogs that have come after him have also been trained so they never exhibit that behavior. All dogs should be trained for their safety and I don't know when dog owners will realize that. As a dog and cat owner I can truthfully say I know many more irresponsible dog owners than irresponsible cat owners. A lot of dog owners have the attitude that their dog can do as it damn well pleases and society has to accept it. It's not until the poor dog is killed by a car, gun, etc., that they realize their ignorance is what resulted in the dog's death.

I have 2 neighbor's who refuse to put their dogs on a leash when the dogs are outside. I repeatedly tell them anything can happen in a matter of seconds, but it falls on deaf ears. All I can say is they don't love their dogs like I love mine and I need to accept that because nothing I say changes their opinion about allowing their dogs outside without a leash.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 11:30PM
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joepyeweed

The bolting issue can be a training issue, but IME it was a specific dog personality issue. All of my dogs go through obedience training... and I never had an escape problem until the one dog... it was his personality... his hound instincts perhaps... but whatever. I laugh whenever I hear someone say, my dogs don't get loose. Yeah, well you've never had this dog.

He was an angel when I was around. But when I wasn't around he was opening doors, slicing through screens, chewing off window sills... He was never left outdoors without supervision. When left indoors alone, he could bend the metal bars in his crate, break a window, dig under the fence, run through the electric fence and be gone for days. Frankly, I wondered why he would even come home, if he was so desperate to get out.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 12:05PM
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cynthia_gw

JoePyeweed, Reread what you wrote and I think you'll find that you described a severe case of separation anxiety.

For those who think dogs just 'get out' well you can train them not to go through an open door, or you can keep them safe by keeping them behind a closed door when you open any outside door.

Ms Minnamouse wrote:
Dogs occasionally get out. It happens to even the best owners some times. You open the door a crack to sign for a package and your dog pushes past your legs and bolts. Or you let your dog out into your safe fenced yard to go potty and unknown to you, he's been working on a hole under a shrub and finally gets out.

All completely preventable. Go into the yard with your dog, or check the gates first. Padlocks on gates will work too.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 5:39PM
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nancyinmich

For the first few years that we lived in this house, the utility meter readers (I assume) would leave the backyard gates open on rare occasions. Twice the dogs got out. Then I went to the hardware store and bought those stick-on letters and a sign that said "Caution!" at the top with room to write underneath. I wrote something like, "Dogs play in yard, Please close the gate" using the stick-on letters. I made one for each gate. I also used my printer to print up a warning sign that said that I would padlock the gates if the utility people left them open again, got that laminated and put it with the signs on the gates. Eventually the laminated signs disintegrated, but my metal signs are still there. The gates have not been left open again. The one near the gas meter is hidden by cedar trees. You can't see the gate unless you walk within five feet of it, so there was no way to check it from the front or side of the house.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2009 at 10:04PM
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