Letter to the Editor

Losing a pet for bad behavior is hard

Friday, September 23, 2005

Dear Editor:

For animal lovers, it's traumatic enough to have a pet euthanized because of illness, injury or age. I know-I have three boxes of ashes on my mantel now. Losing a healthy pet because of bad behavior can be even more devastating. It can tear your heart out and make you feel so guilty for not giving better care.

If you have a dog or even a hamster or parakeet for that matter, please pay attention. Your city ordinance can, AND WILL , have any animal that bites or fights barred from the City of Cassville. One bite, accidentally or justified, will get you animal declared vicious. If a little kid runs up and starts whacking your animal on the nose and he snaps at the offender, pray the parents don't run to the police. If you dog is rambunctious and rude as my dog is at times, for God's sake, put locks on all your gates and big signs on all your doors so some idiot won't let him out.

My dog loves people an loves their attention. Perhaps that is thy he also loves to grab people by the pants' legs. He is a big dog and sometimes clumsy (he has had a serious hip adjustment). Rude and clumsy, but not vicious. A letter from his bet and his groomer stated this in no uncerain terms but was ignored by the prosecuting attorney. If he was vicious, he is big enough to tear your leg off and bring it home for a souvenir. It is pointless for me to defend my dog. I have a place in the country to keep him. I visit him almost daily. He runs to the car every time I leave and is so hurt that he can't come with me.

What happened to me was not right. The parties involved know that, but they have legal and political connections of long standing that shouldn't surprise anyone in a small town. Most humane cities have a facility with trained or at least knowledgeable people to hold and evaluate animals-Cassville does not. If you are unable to place your animal after the dog catcher tells you to get rid of it, he takes it to a local veterinarian for disposal.

A word to the nice lady from Bella Vista, Ark., wanting a leash law. PLEASE, NO. You have built a nice run for your dog and evidently walk it, but with the mindset of some people here regarding animals, you would see poor little dogs all over town tied up on two feet of rope with a pan of dirty water and food whenever. I have seen this and the police do nothing even when reported.

God bless all the rescuers in New Orleans. I know there are those of you out there who grimace and shake your head when you see all those hundreds of folks wading through toxic water full of snakes to rescue some stranger's pets - even lizards and turtles. Those of us who do understand are extremely blessed, I feel. If you can, offer foster care for some of these pets. I have asked for two.

You know God must really love animals. After he made the earth and heavens, he made animals-man came later! I am reminded also that Noah was ordered to take two of all the animals and only eight people.


Terry Allen

Cassville, Missouri