Archive for Friday, March 30, 2007

Dog owners question shooting

Police say animals were aggressive

March 30, 2007


Police shoot two dogs - now the families want answers

According to police, animal control responded yesterday to a report that three Pitbulls were running loose in the 700 block of N. 3rd st. Animal control spent an hour trying to round them up, then called police for backup. The incident ended with police shooting two dogs - killing one of them. Enlarge video

Two North Lawrence residents are puzzled about what led Lawrence police officers to shoot their dogs who were loose in the neighborhood.

Both said the dogs didn't have a history of violence.

But on Wednesday afternoon, police said the animals were aggressive and an officer shot the dogs to protect a nearby 10-year-old boy and himself.

Kathy Coffey's family dog, Sid, a Labrador-hound mix, was killed while her neighbor Sean O'Neal's dog, Dice, a pit bull-boxer mix, sustained an injury that led to the amputation of a front leg. Neither owner was home at the time of the shootings.

"Certainly, the choice the officer made was correct to stop the aggression of the dog," said Sgt. Paul Fellers. The name of the officer who shot the dogs was not available.

The dogs were on the loose shortly after 2 p.m. Wednesday in the 400 block of North Third Street, and animal control officers were called.

According to police, animal control officers were unable to bring the dogs under control using restraint poles - long metal poles with a loop around the end.

A police officer was called to the scene to assist an hour later. The officer reported that Dice aggressively approached the officer before backing off.

While the officer spoke with animal control, both Dice and Sid approached while showing their teeth and growling, according to a police report.

At that point, Charlie Backus, a 10-year-old boy who lives nearby, approached the scene on a bicycle.

The officer placed himself between Dice and Backus and told Backus to return home.

The police report states that Backus fell off his bicycle and Dice began approaching. The officer pointed a gun at the dog, who retreated. Soon after, Dice ran toward the boy, at which point the officer shot and wounded the dog, causing it to run underneath Coffey's front porch.

At that point, the officer reported that Sid approached in an aggressive manner, causing the officer to shoot Sid from about 10 feet away.

Coffey said she doesn't blame the officer for shooting the dog, but questioned his method.

"What I want to know is why did an officer use a shotgun? Why were there not any tranquilizer guns being used?" she said. "I felt that would have been more humane for the animals."

Fellers said police and animal control don't have a chemical immobilization gun. He said one has been on order for at least a month.

Nevertheless, Fellers said such a gun likely would have been ineffective in a situation where a dog charged at an officer because the chemicals don't act quickly enough.

Maggie Backus, whose son Charlie was nearby when the shooting occurred, said Charlie was familiar with Dice.

Charlie, she said, didn't believe he was in danger when Dice approached him shortly before the police officer shot the dog.

Nevertheless, she said she thought the officer made the right choice.

"It's just frustrating that the dogs were out and all this had to happen," she said.

Blackjack, O'Neal's other dog, stayed behind the fence and barked at police during most of the incident. It is at the Lawrence Humane Society where it's being evaluated for its aggressiveness.

O'Neal could face a hearing in Municipal Court about his dogs.

Jerry Little, city prosecutor, said he hasn't yet reviewed the report, but will soon determine whether charges will be filed.


OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years ago

For her, that is a cuddly pooch. For someone else, it's a question mark (as in "what might this dog do?"). If your dog is running loose, don't complain when something like this happens. It puts the cops in a bad position where they have to make very, very quick decisions about public safety. "Didn't have a history" is information unavailable to the police. If that dog had ripped that kid's face off, everyone (including the "pro-pit-bull crowd") would have blamed the cop. It's a lose-lose situation for the police.

Keep your dogs under control and you won't be mourning the death of your family's pet. The actions (or, inactions) of the pet owners is what created this situation. They should blame themselves for the loss of the dog.

gkwhdw 11 years ago

Whatever happened to everyone knowing it is illegal for dogs to run at large? If you aren't at home and your dog isnot restrained, then you are responsible. Sounds like these two dogs are left loose at times. It's your fault your dogs are in "doggie heaven" not the policeman. I believe he was doing his job.. Nobody wants to wait around and see if a dog is gonna bite you, next time, put them in a pen and protect your loving pooches.

Sharon Roullins 11 years ago

Isn't there a leash law here? I've only lived here for a few months so I don't know the law but it seems to me in order for the dogs to be safe, the owner should consider the risks involved if the dogs are running loose. I will agree that it is a terrible thing that happened but a situation that could have been avoided. A similiar incident happened a couple of weeks ago next door to me. I didn't call anyone for fear of retaliation but I was very surprised to see two very large dogs peering in my open window. The owner was only a few feet away but I was alarmed to say the very least. I have young children also that would have made the situation that much worse had they been outside playing or riding their bikes.

Adrienne Sanders 11 years ago

Yes, of course there's a leash law here. Msshaden, please do speak to the owner of the dogs or call animal control if you see those dogs loose again, hopefully another incident such as this one can be avoided. Even an owner close by can't control it if their normally friendly dog gets a wild hair (personal experience on this one, ten stitches and several scalp staples later).

Sagecasey 11 years ago

It is very sad that animals die due to the lack of responsibility shown by the owners. The owners should be charged. I don't want to hear the "they just got out" speech. You need to make sure your animals can't get out.

mom_of_three 11 years ago

I don't know anything about these particular dogs, but every once in a while, my Lab will escape from the yard and start to run. It happens about twice a year. So it could have happened here that the dogs happened to get out or loose.
Too bad this had to happen, but if the boy wasn't scared, why was the officer?

Can't second guess now. Hope the kids didn't have to witness the shooting.

compmd 11 years ago

I love how people believe the hollywood inspired magic of tranquilizer guns. I'm surprised that the officer opened fire with a shotgun (according to TFA) and didn't kill one of them.

concernedparent 11 years ago

The officer didn't know the dog didn't have a "history of violence." The little boy may have known the dog wouldn't hurt him because he lives there. The officer did not. I'm glad that these dogs didn't hurt anyone. I was attacked by a yellow lab when I was 5 and ended up with 38 stitches in my arm. People need to be more responsible with their dogs.

Centrist 11 years ago

Sometimes there's a fine line between "aggressive" and "protecting my territory". The dog behind the fence should not have been taken. It is only natural for it to have been on edge and barking in the situation.

One time, an animal control officer cruised past our house and thought that our dogs were "fighting". They weren't. They got excited because people were walking up to their enclosure (roaming, uncontrolled kids ..)

When the officer walked up to their enclosure, in that moment of excitement, they started barking and got in each others faces, so they had a "correction". the officer thought they were fighting. We explained and nothing happened, but you can see how dogs can be evaluated not on the situation, but simply by their behaviour.

This is sad, but I agree that the dogs should have been properly restrained.

KUDB99 11 years ago

These dogs are a menace. There is no need for a pit bull. I have a dog at home, an Australian Shepherd who's been bred to want to herd, instinctively. These dogs were bred to kill, period. Any dog that kills someone, their owner should be charged with manslaughter. It's no difference than leaving a gun laying around and your kid finds it and shoots himself or somebody else, you should still be charged with a crime.

Luckily these animals didn't hurt or kill anyone, but it's pretty apparent what the intent was. The owners of these animals should be held accountable, and the city council and the state legislature ought to pass stronger ordinances and laws to protect people from this menace.

doc1 11 years ago

I'll tell you why a shotgun was used. Dogs are goal driven animals. If they suddenly decide to attack something and you shoot it with a 9mm it won't completely stop the animal. A police handgun will only slow the dog down temporarily because it can still keep going for a few minutes. If he would have shot the dog with a handgun the dog still could have gotten to him or the boy depending on the dog.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years ago

If your target is moving, a shotgun is what you want.

BrianR 11 years ago

Several years ago in Lawrence, I saw a mail carrier who couldn't have been more than 120 lbs, take down a rather large dog with pepper spray. This situation was handled poorly.

sourpuss 11 years ago

Keep your dogs on a lead, behind a secure fence, or on a tie-down. I'm really sorry about the loss of their pet, but you have to protect your pet from the world, even a big guard dog. If your pet is allowed to run loose, its life expectancy drop significantly. Please, keep your pets on your own property and under your direct control, regardless or size or breed. Even my cats are leash trained. Just doing this would solve so many problems, even "breed-specific" ones.

jafs 11 years ago

Of course pets should be kept from roaming the streets freely.

However, for an animal to react in an aggressive manner when poked with a pole, or when they see another animal get shot, is not that suprising to me.

How many of us wouldn't react similarly in a similar situation?

It sounds like the more aggressive dog here was just wounded, and the tamer one killed. That's a shame.

If the police have non-lethal means of controlling human suspects, they certainly should have some for animals.

michial2 11 years ago

Why couldn't Animal Control get the dogs under control in an hour! Is that not what thay are trained to do!

If they had the traqualizer gun the dogs could have been captured before the police needed to respond!

The explination in the paper does not sound like the action of dogs. Unless aclumated to it, dog are for the most part Gunshy and run FROM it not towards it!

Yes a 9mm would have dropped the dogs on the spot ,but the shotgun was used to reduce the error factor and would be the correct choice against a attacking animal. Which I do not believe these were doing and that the officers overreacted to the situation.

Bottom Line: Animal Control could not do their job! So the dogs were shot

KUDB99 11 years ago

The police acted appropriately, they put down animals that were acting aggresively. If this would have been in my neighborhood, and the police came in and shot a dog they suspected of being aggresive, I'd applaud. How many more maimings and killings does it take before people understand there is no place for animals like these in neighborhoods with kids.

You have to ask the question, would you rather the police not react agressively, and someone gets hurt by a dog, or "overreact" and shoot a dog that may or may not be going after a kid on a bike. I say better safe than sorry, and shoot that dog dead, don't pepper spray and send it to the vet, don't tranquilize it and give it a nap....

After that, it should be a crime that these dogs are on the street, and not a $20 non-license traffic court offense either. People should face stiff fines if their dog is loose and acting aggresively towards others, or even jail time.

badger 11 years ago

Actually, bottom line is, "Keep your (*&#$ dog tied up, fenced, or inside when you're not around to keep an eye on it."

It's more likely that a dog roaming loose will be hit by a car than shot by a cop. Would this have been in the newspaper if those dogs had run out into traffic and been hit by a car? Would people be saying, "Why couldn't that driver have taken a different route? Why wasn't he going extra-slow because of the potential for dogs in the situation? The driver on the other side of the street didn't hit the dogs, why did this driver?" The officers, faced with an aggressive dog whose history was unknown to them, and with absent owners, acted appropriately. I agree with compmd on the tranquilizer guns. In the movies, you shoot the animal with the tranq and it falls right down. In real life, it can take much longer than that.

Frankly, I'm very sorry that one dog was killed and another wounded. I can't imagine how I'd feel if I had to face that through either irresponsibility or carelessness, I'd lost a beloved pet I hadn't kept properly restrained or fenced. I'm sure it's possible that this was coincidentally the first time either of those dogs had ever gotten out of an enclosure, but if you know you have a pet that can slip its leash, jump its fence, or trip the gate, you owe it to yourself and the pet to make sure that he isn't out there on the streets. Leaving a dog to run free while you're away from your house, you take a chance every day that you'll come home and he'll have been bitten by a feral animal, hit by a car, injured by neighborhood bullies, taken by animal control, or otherwise injured or killed.

I have two cats, and the danger of injury to free-roaming animals is the primary reason they're inside cats. I've seen three cats in my neighborhood killed, two hit by cars and one in a fight with a raccoon. I've had a cat get out, and when she did, my primary fear was that something would happen to her, and I would be responsible for losing her because of my own carelessness.

jafs 11 years ago

Of course the owners are responsible for letting their pets out, but the police are also responsible for their actions, aren't they?

kneejerkreaction 11 years ago

An aggressive dog was shot, good. May save someone from being maimed or killed later on.

kneejerkreaction 11 years ago

Why do people insist on giving their animals human qualities of "kind", "not a history", etc. Animals are unpredictable and should be dealt with as animals, not humans that can be reasoned with, somewhat.

Centrist 11 years ago

Do NOT own a dog unless you treat it as a member of your family. Too many people see dogs as toys, or accessories.

You take care of your dog, make sure it is safe and secure and guide it's existence, as you would a child. A good start is a secure enclosure or yard.

Gotta admit, it is fairly poor that Animal Control couldn't do their job in a whole hour. Don't they have a net? Or some way to calm down a dog? Maybe they're short of equipment. Maybe they're outfitted as well as the troops are outfitted by Bush ...

michial2 11 years ago

I hope the police don't OVER REACT when dealing with people!! Oh my I think they already have on at least two occaisions and two people are dead!!! but better to over react than under react. What the hell, it's only life and anybody two beings can create it!

nomorebobsplease 11 years ago

"Several years ago in Lawrence, I saw a mail carrier who couldn't have been more than 120 lbs, take down a rather large dog with pepper spray. This situation was handled poorly."

The problem with this is that dogs have memories. Most mail carriers/meter readers and the like don't like to use that type of reaction because it simply makes the dog dislike them, and makes their job more difficult to do the next time around (tomorrow, next month, etc)

owner responsibility. it's a shame, but I think the police acted as they should have.

Christine Pennewell Davis 11 years ago

one was not pit the other a pit mix and no idea about the third just for a clarification. I for one think drop kick dogs are more aggressive but adults do not see them as mean because they are small but a kid can still get hurt bad by one so in short a mean dog can be of any size.

Linda Endicott 11 years ago

So barking is now considered a sign of doggie aggression?

I though it was just something that dogs do. I know some dogs that will bark when the wind ruffles the grass. Does this mean they're being aggressive toward the grass?

If they had had one of the tranquilizer guns I'm sure that, within that hour before the police arrived, they would have had plenty of time to be effective.

Yes, of course the dogs were barking and probably acting aggressively. It was their neighborhood, their "territory", and the animal control officers were strangers and in their territory.

I suggest they get those tranquilizer guns now, or at least find out what's taking so long for them to arrive. Perhaps that will help to prevent another situation like this.

BrianR 11 years ago

"The problem with this is that dogs have memories. Most mail carriers/meter readers and the like don't like to use that type of reaction because it simply makes the dog dislike them, and makes their job more difficult to do the next time around (tomorrow, next month, etc)"

This, unfortunately, is a common myth.

Confrontation 11 years ago

I have a few dogs in my neighborhood that bark all the time. I would absolutely love for the cops to "take them out." When are people going to stop annoying others with their own obsession to own dogs? Keep them quiet, keep them tied up, or enjoy their ugly mugs over the mantle.

shockchalk 11 years ago

The only sure way to prevent another situation like this is for the owners to follow the law and keep their animals from running free.

Jeremy Lichtenauer 11 years ago


Local briefs Thursday, September 6, 2001

Dog bite: Pit bull attacks police officer A Lawrence Police officer was searching a home early Wednesday when he ran into the wrong end of a pit bull.

Officer Damon Thomas was bitten twice by the dog and was treated at Lawrence Memorial Hospital for wounds to his right thigh and right arm above the elbow, said Sgt. Mike Pattrick.

About 2 a.m., Thomas and other officers entered the home in the 300 block of Funston Street. Police wouldn't say what the officers were looking for or what they found besides the attacking dog.

The dog attacked Thomas after the officer entered a room in the house. Thomas used pepper spray to ward off the animal, and Animal Control officers were summoned. They took the dog to the Lawrence Humane Society, where it will be kept for observation for at least 10 days, Pattrick said.

Pit bull bites arm of police officer Tuesday, August 1, 2006

A pit bull attacked a Lawrence Police officer Friday night in the 300 block of Mississippi Street, according to a report.

The officer, Warner Stumpenhaus, was called to the area about 8 p.m. because two pit bulls were running loose. He found the dogs and made contact with their 44-year-old owner. They then started to take the dogs around the back of the man's home.

As they were walking around the home, a third dog appeared and lunged at Stumpenhaus. He raised his arm to defend himself and the dog bit him on the forearm, according to a report.

When he was able to shake the dog off, the owner chased it down and put it inside the home. The owner was cited for charges, including having an animal at large and no proof of vaccinations. The dog was quarantined.

Stumpenhaus went to Lawrence Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Linda Endicott 11 years ago

Some of my neighbors in the past had the same reaction to my child.

Should we just take all of them "out"?

imagold 11 years ago

Sad story all the way around. Dogs shouldn't have been loose but it's painful losing a family pet.

Brave of the officer to put himself between the boy and the dog. (Where was the boy when the shot was fired? Yikes!)

If the same rationalization were used in human situations, the police would have shot a person or two in the 700 block of Massachusetts St. just a few days ago in what was characterized as a "violent" incident. Pulling guns. Running over people with vehicles. There are all sorts of people running loose that should be on a leash or fenced in. But that's inhumane. Give me a dog any day.

blessed3x 11 years ago

Posted by BrianR (anonymous) on March 30, 2007 at 11:29 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"The problem with this is that dogs have memories. Most mail carriers/meter readers and the like don't like to use that type of reaction because it simply makes the dog dislike them, and makes their job more difficult to do the next time around (tomorrow, next month, etc)"

This, unfortunately, is a common myth.

BrianR, you're full of it. My neighborhood as a "troubled" person that walks around and shouts at the dogs of the neighborhood, especially my black lab. My lab doesn't even bark at anybody, but will growl at this person who almost daily walks up the alley and shouts at him. They remember.

BrianR 11 years ago

Sure, if your "troubled person" walks by on a regular basis; conditioning is a powerful tool. But "remember" that's just brill.

I've had these discussions before and found them to be a waste of time, there are too many "experts" on dog behavior out there, so I'm done.

Have a nice weekend.

lubyloo 11 years ago

I live outside the city limits, where there is no leash law. The number of people who let their dogs run loose out here is astounding. Seeing 2-3 dogs together is not an uncommon. The owners don't care if their pets are killed by a car, and don't care if anyone is threatened by their dogs. Forget about going for a jog or a walk, unless you don't mind running into one of these animals. One dog in particular keeps roaming into our yard. My husband nicely asked the dog's owner, our neighbor across the street, if he could keep his dog away from our yard, and his response was "get off my property, you f***ing punk." So, we have no recourse, other than shooting the dog if he comes into our yard, which of course we don't want to do. It's so aggravating.

shorttrees 11 years ago

Sounds as though our local PD could use some doggie sensitivity training...or any dog training! Having met these dogs as a total stranger (to the dogs)I was impressed by their friendliness and not scared by (heaven forbid!) PIT BULL BLOOD! If our police would learn about dogs and their behaviour (since dogs are such a MAJOR problem here, obviously) they might be a little more effective in these situations and a pet that accidentally gets out would be less likely to end up dead.

C'mon people! A dog got loose, happens all the time. It got shot, terrible as that is; but what about the dog up against the fence IN THE FENCED YARD that got shot? Officer Overreaction maybe? Sounds like a dog chase really got some adrenaline going somewhere!

compmd 11 years ago

when will people realize that the anthropomorphic feelings they assume dogs have are false? they are animals, they do not share your concept of emotion, nor your concept of right and wrong. Dogs do not share the notion of "I will get in trouble if I attack someone." How do you control something that has no knowledge (thus no fear) of consequences?

You also assume they are physiologically identical and react the same way people do to injury or pain. Killing a moving target quickly with a single bullet is not as easy as the movies would have you think. Also, the police are probably not using highly lethal rounds in their pistols. A shotgun was the appropriate weapon to use here.

Remember folks, dogs are not people. If you equate animals like dogs with people, you are delusional and irresponsible for the safety and well being of those around you.

Christine Pennewell Davis 11 years ago

biggunz, lack of sleep. All is a blur. I am surpised I can even read let alone type.

jafs 11 years ago

Dogs are territorial by nature - if an unknown person entered our house in the middle of the night, I would expect (and be glad) our dog would bark and act aggressively towards them - this is in response to the story above about the police officer entering a private residence at 2am.

BTW, did they have a warrant?

bugmenot 11 years ago

The above poster sounds kind of harsh, and (I hope) they don't mean to. Dogs aren't like adult people; I think it's best to view dogs as like kids. They don't, like the above poster said, engage in critical thinking or consider the consequences of their actions. They're more impulse-driven and instinctive, and I don't care how sweet or good-natured yours is, new situations scare dogs and make them more impulse-driven.

That said, we chose to bring dogs into the human world, and they deserve our care. We need to watch out for them, like kids. You wouldn't let your toddler roam loose where they could be hit by a car - why would you let your dog roam that way?

No, dogs don't think like people, but because we've invited them into the people world, we should care for them. Don't have a dog if you're not going to treat it and protect it as you would a family member.

Personally, I think it's pretty cruel to have big dogs if all they have is a backyard to play in. Yes, these people should have fenced the dog in, but dogs still get out because they don't like fences. I think people need to consider what's best for the animal before selecting a dog to bring into the family. So many people treat dogs like accessories, and that is the root of these problems. (I saw someone once return their dog to the Lawrence shelter because they'd bought new furniture, and the dog's coat clashed with it.)

KUDB99 11 years ago

C'mon....these dogs are exactly like a loaded gun with 4 legs and fur. If they go off accidentally, someone could get killed. And, unfortunately, we've got more than enough evidence to prove that when a dog like this gets loose, they can kill and maim. People get arrested for leaving a gun lying around and someone gets killed b/c of's called negligent homicide. If someone has a dog that kills, they need to be charged as well.

Don't give me the bull about how it's all about how they are raised as well. If you raise a lion as a pet, it will still grow up and still be a lion, and still want to bite your face off.

Confrontation 11 years ago

"Posted by crazyks (anonymous) on March 30, 2007 at 11:48 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Some of my neighbors in the past had the same reaction to my child.

Should we just take all of them "out"?"

If your child is annoying everyone, then YES. If your child is chasing and biting children on bikes, then YES. The parents of such demons should also be taken "out" in order to clean the gene pool.

compmd 11 years ago

I never said that dogs don't feel emotion. It is intuitively obvious to the most casual of observers that they do in fact feel emotion. I said they don't share your concept of emotion. You simply cannot use human rationale to evaluate a dog's response to a situation. Why? Because dogs aren't humans. A dog cannot place a value on its actions, nor does it have the intelligence or foresight to accurately predict the outcome of situations it gets into.

We have a tendency to anthropomorphize animals we hold close to us and consider them our friends. That's perfectly acceptable, but only to a point. That point is when we neglect the fact that our values, beliefs, morals, reason, and all other things that makes us human are NOT shared by our animal companions.

commonsense 11 years ago

In all fairness to the APBT (The Nanny Dog of the US Depression because they were so good with children)and other potentially threatening looking dogs, it must be noted that:

"Any dog, treated harshly or trained to attack, may bite a person. Any dog can be turned into a dangerous dog. The owner or handler most often is responsible for making a dog into something dangerous.
An irresponsible owner or dog handler might create a situation that places another person in danger by a dog, without the dog itself being dangerous, as in the case of the Pomeranian that killed the infant.
Any individual dog may be a good, loving pet, even though its breed is considered to be potentially dangerous. A responsible owner can win the love and respect of a dog, no matter its breed. One cannot look at an individual dog, recognize its breed, and then state whether or not it is going to attack. "

Do APBT's bite people? Sometimes. Do Labrador Retrievers bite people? Sometimes. Do Labrador's make the paper? Rarely ever! Do APBT's make the the paper? Almost always, even if a bite did not occur. Have I been bitten by an APBT? No Have I been bitten by a Labrador Retriever? Yes

Some people own dogs; the average person Some people know dogs; the club members and kennel workers Some people study dogs; the passionate breeders Some people study all dogs and make it their business to see everyside of a dogs ability and temperment.

Most of the people here belong in the first category. Do a little research (read a book on the breed), be objective, and understand both sides of the argument before forming an opinion. SPEECH 101! Some of us understand that they APBT has tremendous ability to cause damage, but the bottom line is poor ownership, plain and simple.

law 11 years ago

I used to work for LPD. Someone mentioned that officers have non lethal options for people and they should have used those options for these dogs. I gotta pipe up here and say that Chief Olin has denied repeated requests by officers for non-lethal weapons for years. It was only as of the late 90's that he allowed them to even have pepper spray. If these officers were properly equipt like other agencies they would have other options (depending on the situation). I know the frustration of those officers who get denied at every turn by their so-called Chief.

Sarah Kerwin 11 years ago

commonsense, thanks for some...well..common sense.

Kontum1972 11 years ago

shooting dogs....oh golly gee!

with wakarusa fest around the this any indication as to what will occur ?


bearded_gnome 11 years ago

Frankly, I'm very sorry that one dog was killed and another wounded. I can't imagine how I'd feel if I had to face that through either irresponsibility or carelessness, I'd lost a beloved pet I hadn't kept properly restrained or fenced. I'm sure it's possible that this was coincidentally the first time either of those dogs had ever gotten out of an enclosure, but if you know you have a pet that can slip its leash, jump its fence, or trip the gate, you owe it to yourself and the pet to make sure that he isn't out there on the streets. Leaving a dog to run free while you're away from your house, you take a chance every day that you'll come home and he'll have been bitten by a feral animal, hit by a car, injured by neighborhood bullies, taken by animal control, or otherwise injured or killed.

Badger said the above well.

confrontation: the barking dogs in your neighborhood, many may simply be lonely. their owners just don't include them in their lives as they should. don't give them a job, walk, etc. others, may be the breed. some may be barking because they wish to be inside dogs, being outside.

dogs aren't people but they do experience emotion. look at the dog's owner first.

I'm guessing blackjack was taken perhaps because he/she was able to get out the same way the other dog did. demonstrating a failure of the owner to properly house these two.

took an hour, and still didn't catch them, and the article implies more than one ACO? yeah, maybe they need equipment/training?

I was wondering how long 'till Marion weighed in, as he styles himself a dog expert, along with the other 3,580 other areas of his vast expertise.

compmd 11 years ago

bugmenot, if its me you are referring to, I didn't mean to sound harsh. We always had dogs in my family, including a Siberian Husky that I loved for 16 years. My point was that people need to take a realistic stance when dealing with animals and not assume an animal can feel those same things. People who do that can get hurt or allow others to get hurt. I loved my husky, he was well mannered and behaved...usually. We knew that he could hurt someone if provoked. If you held a steak in your hand and offered it to him, there was a good chance you could lose your hand. If you accidentally stepped on his tail, there was a good chance you'd find his enormous teeth in your ankle. So, people were instructed NEVER to offer him food from their hands, and to give him some distance when he was lying down in order to avoid his tail.

People need to use common sense and be responsible. Unfortunately, responsibility seems so passe these days and common sense is not so common.

purplesage 11 years ago

The dogs, in the LJW story, are benefactors of the use of personal pronouns which make them sound like persons, not animals.

No fence is secure enough to "guarantee" a dog won't get out. There are too many variables.

Pit bulls can seem "nice" enough, but can that breed be trusted?

If this thing went on for an hour, where were the owners of these animals?

Police use tactics that exacerbate situations. The way law enforcement treats humans and animals results in rage and frustration.

Nobody knows if these animals would have attacked. The last time I got really bitten by a dog, I was reading meters in an enclosed back yard. There was a BIG dog which I watched very closely. Its little sidekick grabbed the back of my leg and I had to whack it with the meter book to get it to let go. I have been the object of plenty of bared teeth and growls without being attacked.

People who carry guns use them. That is true of the police, of gang members, and wow, am I excited about conceal and carry. Get out the kevlar.

fbbandchick 11 years ago

This is a note to those who think that we did not do anything to prevent Sid from getting out of our fence--GET A HEART! We took many preventative measures to try to prevent Sid from getting out and as far as the coments of the aggressiveness, there are signs posted on the entrances to get to the fence letting people know to be aware that the dogs will protect their domain. And the coments made by KUDB99, Confrontation, compmd, shockchalk, couranna1, gkwhdw, and OldEnuf2BYurDad about either dogs being 'a menace' or that they do not feel emotion is just something mean and heartless said by those who don't really know animals at all!! And as far as the comments about it not mattering how a dog is raised is so FALSE!! It does matter on how you raise any dog, because any dog that is raised in a mean way is going to be more prone to be vicious agressive when approached in a manor that they see as hurtfull to them or those close to them. After I brought Sid home when he was maybe a month old after being abandoned and found by a friend of mine, he did not once show any aggression to anyone or any of our other dogs. Well, all I can say is that I hope my sister whose dog he was does not read these mean an poisonous things some of you are saying because she and the rest of us have already suffered enough just by the loss of Sid and the knoledge that as much as we want Sid back that it can not be so. I do want to thank those of you who have voiced your condolences for this tragic loss of life and want to let you know that we appriciate it.

shigirl 11 years ago

It really bothers me how the blurb on the side says 3 pitbulls were loose and one was shot. but no where in the story does it mention 3 pitbulls! the story mentions one pit mix and then it has to be blown up into 3 pitbulls who will eventually be described as snarling, foaming at the mouth monsters. and the dog who was shot and killed wasn't even the pit! and KUDB99 you must be really ignorant to think that pits are bred just to kill. you need to do your homework on pits before posting something like that.

Kathy Theis-Getto 11 years ago

This is not about pit bulls, it is about breaking the law by having a dog at large. Follow the rules.

esl03 11 years ago

These people did not deserve to have their dog shot. If thats the case of dogs running loose. The police should have shot my dogs serveral times. My pesky neighbor told them that he bit her and they didnt do squat. I think the neighbor and police officer owe the family an apologie. This family would never own a dog that would be a danger to society... if you had been their neighbor long enough you should have known that. You deserve nothing in life at this moment... I cried for my friend knowing she had been very hurt by this. The dog does not look like a PIT BULL. Do your research!!! If I can do anything to help this family. You can get ahold of me here, I hope.

Linda Endicott 11 years ago

The child in question knew the dogs, and the dogs were familiar with him.

Did it ever occur to any of you that if the dogs were showing any aggression it was toward the police officers, and that the dogs thought THEY were a danger to a child they knew? The officers were, after all, total strangers to the dogs. The child was not.

ScottyMac 11 years ago

esl03 wrote "These people did not deserve to have their dog shot."

esl03, the officer did not shoot the dogs to punish the owners. The officer shot the dogs because they were acting aggressively and endangering a child. He really had no other option. Animal control, who are trained to handle aggressive dogs, tried to get the beasts to submit for an hour. They were unsuccessful and called for a back-up.

I guarantee you that the officer did not want to shoot the animals, and I'll bet that he is saddened by the outcome of the situation. But an apology? To whom and for what? Get real. A vicious dog of any size is dangerous. But larger animals can and do kill people.

I suppose he could have he handled the situation differently. He could have let the vicious animals attack the child.

You can claim all you like that the dogs were docile, lovable little critters who wouldn't growl at a kitty-cat. Unfortunately, that was not the behavior they were exhibiting that day.

Summer Wilks 11 years ago

did anyone think about how much the family has to pay to have the dogs leg amputated?! Why shouldn't the state have to pay... just because the officer was scared of the dog doesn't give him the right to put that kind of burden on a family. The little boy (Charlie) wasn't scared... as matter of fact how do we know he wasn't trying to protect the boy from the officer in the first place??? dogs aren't exactly stupid you know, especially when it comes to danger!!! maybe he was trying to do the same thing the officer was and protect the boy... did any one shoot the officer?! they were doing the same thing!!!

gr 11 years ago

I still think the officer should pay to go back through target practice so he doesn't miss and maim the dog.

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