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“It Wasn’t My Dog…” – Diva’s Domain

December 23, 2014
At home - where she should be.

At home – where she should be.

So what is it about people that cannot keep their dog penned up because it’s “cruel” – but when their dog gets with other dogs, and gets in trouble, there’s instant denial that it’s their dog. I followed a trail of feathers to his yard!

Many people with livestock, especially poultry, have a solution to loose dogs – one that is also said to be “cruel”. SSS. That stands for Shoot, Shovel (bury it) and Shut up, because the dog pays for the lack of training, the lack of caring to keep him home.

The dog in question has been seen by more than three people attacking and killing cats. The same dog was chased from the back yard this morning trying to tear into chickens. Two hours later squawking from a desperate chicken, a white streak through the trees and a trail of white feathers.

“Nope it wasn’t my dog…must have been that other dog.” I informed the guy that most people would put a bullet in the dog and be done with it. I guess he took that as hostile. I was trying to give warning that his dog’s days are numbered…not by me but two of these dogs have been seen over a mile away – that’s a lot of area and a lot of folks with chickens – and guns. Due to location, I cannot shoot, but others don’t have that issue. This could be part vent, part reality check, part letter to an irresponsible dog owner.

It brings so many questions. Why bother having a dog and not keeping it home? Why feed it, play with it and not care enough to keep it off the street? Because it’s ‘cruel’? Training is cruel? Confinement for their protection is cruel?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIs it not cruel for the dog to force fear on the chickens, tearing into their pen and chasing them? Their home – their safety? How about goats that can be chased through fences in terror of dogs? How about rabbits that can be pulled through cage wire – ever seen a rabbit skinned alive by a dog grabbing a foot? I have – not my dog, not my rabbit – but it’s sickening.

Some look at the welded steel and chain link used and say it’s heavy duty for keeping chickens in. My concern isn’t the chickens – it’s the dogs that people don’t care enough to train so I have to. It’s trying to keep the birds alive, and now someone thinks their dogs should be above the law (yes there are laws about property damage, but no leash law here). Some insist the problem dogs don’t belong to anyone, they’re just ‘around’ – they eat well for not being cared for by anyone!

I’m furious at again being in a position. And when someone’s dog comes up missing, they come to me. Never mind if the dog had been kept home it wouldn’t be missing. I’m sure they’re good dogs – at home. 7 a.m. every morning they’re HERE. Yesterday was the exception as Bella was outside waiting for them. My dogs, then, have to physically defend the property no matter the weather.

One of the dogs grabbed and broke the back on a cat a while back – and of course the dog owner didn’t get the job of putting the cat down. Just another living squeak toy in the wake of a dog that is aggressive to other animals and has been threatening to me as well. At what point will dog owners take responsibility?

Unfortunately, bored dogs find things to do. It is unfair for neighbors to pay the cost of their boredom. It’s unfair for complaining that if the neighbors didn’t have what they have that their dog wouldn’t be a problem. It’s unfair for dogs every day to be hit on the road, shot, injured because people don’t care enough to keep them home.

I love dogs. I resent my dog having to alter her living situation because if she’d not out there, someone else’s dog is an issue. I resent warning someone their dog is harassing chickens and being told it wasn’t their dog rather than “sorry we’ll keep him up”. That, and doing it, would diffuse much.

Lack of it puts a target on the dogs. Deep down if someone else practices SSS on the dogs, it won’t really affect me. But there’s kids on the home who like the dog, and they’re learning that having a neighborhood canine bully is ok. They’ll lose the dog, and get another and the cycle repeats.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALivestock owners across the US and beyond are called “cruel” for shooting dogs like these that people don’t care enough about to keep home. Some are owned by officials, neighbors, people a mile or more away who swear their dog wouldn’t do anything. When the dog is eliminated in a pasture after someone’s livestock, somehow it’s the farmer at fault. Or it’s dog breeders at fault. Blame everyone except the person who chose a puppy or a dog and brought them home with the unspoken promise of giving them a home – then failed the dog.

It’s a failure because you, irresponsible dog owner, did not keep the dog home where he was safe. People bemoan puppies, but with three females in heat now, we have no puppies because the girls are home, away from contact with males. (Not difficult folks!) It’s the owner who decides a pen, a chain, confinement of some sort is “cruel” and the dog can’t be in the house so let it roam and don’t worry about it – everyone else will.

Because everyone else pays. And they resent dogs, sometimes all dogs, because of the actions of yours. This isn’t one time slipping out of the yard. This isn’t an accidental escape. This is dogs not having to escape because they’re not home, they have no boundaries and no one has taught them differently.

There’s an uproar about the dogs euthanized in shelters. There’s silence about those killed due to owner failure, and the other animals who pay for their dogs actions.

Most vow SSS due to liability, neighborhood relations and other reasons. Some make the dog owner pay, if it can be proved. Most dog attacks the only verifiable proof is the dead dog dropped in the act of attacking.

That’s “cruelty” – but the only thing that stops the attacks. With the cost of hens, calves and other livestock now, the dogs that folks don’t care enough to keep home will be disappearing on an increasing level. Those in rural areas know what I speak of, whether admitting or not. Some get livestock guardian dogs as something that fights back on behalf of the animals and birds that can’t.

Until people are willing to take a dog in and keep them home, guardians and SSS will be employed in areas where livestock and dogs without boundaries meet.

That, to me, is the ultimate cruelty because it makes someone else deal with your dog…because you won’t. When that happens, the dog dies. Compared to confinement at home – cruelty?

 

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 23, 2014 4:33 PM

    YES YES YES! If you love your dog, keep him home. Because when he shows up here, thinking my chickens or goats look like fun, my LGDs will beat him up or possibly kill him. Other livestock owners will shoot him. He may also be hit by a car while he is out entertaining himself. Or poisoned. Or attacked by wild predators that aren’t a threat to me because of my dogs but which will take a pet dog in a skinny minute. Or, if Animal Control does actually manage to do their job, your dog may be picked up, taken to a shelter where he will probably be confused & terrified, & end up euthanized in a cold sterile room surrounded by strangers.

    All because you didn’t care enough about your dog to keep him at home.

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  1. Dumped Dogs and Faithful Examples | Food, Farm, Life Choices

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