Friday, August 22, 2008

They like to talk about pit bulls in Cape Breton

In the last day or so there was an editorial about a previous letter to the Editor at the Cape Breton Post about a woman who left her toy poodle out loose in her back yard while she went shopping for an hour, and when she came home it had been killed by a relative's pit bull who had gotten loose. She blamed the pit bull entirely and the pit bull as well is now dead. It's a lovely story - there are comments allowed with the letter to the editor and some of the comments are quite delicious. I'm going to post the Editorial, the original letter to the editor - and the comment that I left with the lady's letter to the Editor. I was rather wild.

This was the original letter to the editor:

It’s time for rules concerning pit bulls; their owners
The Cape Breton Post

Pitt bulls should be banned or their owners should be screened, and the dog should be locked up in a proper pen.

On August 18, we decided to go into Sydney to do some shopping. We did something that we never do; we left our toy poodle KD outside because it was beautiful day. We returned home after not even an hour. When we pulled into the driveway, we waited for KD to come greet us at the car. She wasn’t coming. I said, “Where’s KD?” Immediately after my grandmother let the biggest scream come out. We looked and there she was. Just after being brutally attacked and killed by a vicious pitt bull. She was just lying there. It would have been bad enough if it had have been the first time, but no, the same dog attacked her last year and nothing was done about it because the pitt bull was just after having a litter of puppies.

So what does that mean, more vicious dogs running at large?

The owner, who I know very well, since he is a relative, should be charged. My poor dog was just minding her business in her own yard and was attacked. What would have happened if it were a child that the dog got?

She tried to get another dog according to neighbours. At least the dog has been put down and now she will not be able to harm any more dogs or children.

I just wish she had have been put down last year, at least then, I would still have my KD.

Bev MacDonald
Glace Bay

This is my response:

To all the posters who are saying "thank God it wasn't a child that
the pit bull attacked" - if it was in fact a child this pit bull
attacked - then this lady should have been charged with CHILD
ABANDONMENT - because she left her dog unsupervised and unattended in
her back yard while she went shopping!! Imagine if she would have done
that with a 2 year old child? That is basically what a dog is! A 2
year old child! If she WOULD HAVE done that to a child - imagine
someone walking by and seeing an unattended 2 year old child in the
back yard! They would have immediately called the POLICE! But since
it's "Just a dog" - that's okay - so when another UNATTENDED DOG -
comes along - of course bad things are going to happen.

This tragic incident did NOT HAPPEN because the dog was a pit bull and
the llittle dog was abandoned in his own back yard - it was because

They are the ones that suffered - BOTH THOSE DOGS ARE NOW DEAD.

Doesn't anybody understand that? The blame is with the owners - they
are BOTH negligent - for leaving the little poodle unattended in the
yard - it could be bloody shangri-la back there - but there's no way
he could've been completely safe.

Blame the OWNERS - not the DOGS.

Joan Sinden
Halifax, Nova Scotia

and here is the editorial that was in today's Cape Breton Post:

Pit bull attack sparks debate
The Cape Breton Post

People are passionate about politics, religion, sports, and one other thing, their pets. People love their pets.

They are members of the family who provide companionship, comfort and endless hours of pleasure for people of all ages.

An injured, sick or lost pet can literally traumatize a family. Any family who has suffered the loss of a cat, dog, bird or who has to make the gut-wrenching decision to put their pet down knows first-hand about the anxiety and even depression associated with the decision.

It is always the last course of action and comes only after every other alternative has been exhausted.

So it’s not surprising that a letter to the editor published in Thursday’s Post from Glace Bay resident Bev MacDonald under the heading: “It’s time for rules concerning pit bulls; their owners”, prompted so much debate.

Readers were either in total support of MacDonald whose toy poodle had been mauled to death by a neighbourhood pit bull or found fault with the Glace Bay resident for leaving the dog outside and unattended.

MacDonald is so incensed over the incident that she feels the time has come for regulations that govern not only pit bulls, but maintains something also should apply to the dog owners.

All dogs are potentially dangerous and it’s a proven fact that some breeds are more dangerous than others. Unfortunately for pit bulls and their owners this breed rates at the top of the list, according to the U.S-based Center for Disease Control.

Dog owners share a responsibility particularly for breeds who are bigger and stronger to make sure their pets are trained properly and kept in restrained areas and away from pets, adults and children.

Some breeds like pit bulls are naturally aggressive, so it is incumbent on their owners to make sure they use training and discipline to control their animals.
When family members or neighbours conclude that a dog is dangerous they should contact animal control officers who can assess the situation and if need be remove the animal so it’s no longer a threat.

Negligent and irresponsible dog owners who mistreat their animals and train them to be mean and aggressive must share some of the blame.

It’s also a documented fact with Canada Post and utility companies where letter carriers and meter readers will attest to being attacked and seriously injured by the supposedly friendly smaller dogs.

This debate has plenty of emotion, but it lacks one important element and that’s basic common sense.


  1. Anonymous11:53 AM

    Ah Canada and their little 'pit bull' stories.It`s almost getting like the States.Everybody and their Uncle and their Uncle`s dog/cat/squirrel has been "attacked" by a 'pit bull'.
    Oh well it brings in visitors and that`s the whole point of it.

  2. Anonymous3:33 PM

    Is there any place more dangerous for a dog to live than Cape Breton?

    If it's not being chained outside for its entire life, it's being holed up in a slum shelter, left outside as prey to another dog or killed by the SPCA.

    What a fucking place.

  3. The editorial says: "All dogs are potentially dangerous."

    If the Halifax regional council understood this basic truth, Brindi would be safe at home with me right now.

    On the other hand, some members might use it to try to ban every last canine in town.

  4. Anonymous8:40 PM

    "Is there any place more dangerous for a dog to live than Cape Breton?" YES OBVIOUSLY THERE IS!!!!!!! RIGHT NOW IT SEEMS THAT HRM HAS THAT TITLE!

    Oh and also, all the more reason that people and agencies should help the animals in Cape Breton instead of sitting behind a monitor and keyboard spouting off "slurs" just to jump on the bandwagon.

  5. I don't understand what you're trying to get at when you say "Oh and also, all the more reason that people and agencies should help the animals in Cape Breton instead of sitting behind a monitor and keyboard spouting off "slurs" just to jump on the bandwagon."

    Can you say some more about that? I'm confused.


  6. Anonymous2:17 AM

    It is no secret that Cape Breton needs help with the rescue work, pet over population and levels of government that turn a deaf ear and a blind eye to the needs of ALL of Cape Breton, not just industrial Cape Breton. Cape Breton certainly has been portrayed for many years as "a different breed of people - years behind in the care of pets" and this in some cases (ALOT) is true. My meaning of that statement is IF someone believes that Cape Breton is the most dangerous place for a dog to live, then by all means, spread some news of resources that might be available to CB, NOT just the shelter in Sydney, they are overpopulated there too. It just angers me (and if I was too abrupt, my apologies) but it angers me that over the years, the very ones who were supposed to be the NOVA SCOTIA SPCA seemed to forget that NS is made up of more than Provincial office and the metro shelter - they have ALWAYS KNOWN the desperate situations in Cape Breton and chose to ignore them. People NEED to know that WE NEED YOUR HELP HERE. Do you know that the money that was collected following the CP seizure as handed to Pam Keddy by Kelly A. at the Hawk ONLY to later have Pam resign (YIPPEE) and say that it was not about the animals anymore it was about politics. How maddening is that for the folks that now look and realize they handed over approx. $12000. for the seized animals; 9 killed, she's gone, Judith is gone; the ship is sailing without a captain and not a boo out of the press down here about Pam leaving. People got concerned when they realized this happened and now are EXTREMELY hesitant to EVER donate again! So again, that hurts the animals in need here. It also pisses me off that the money wasn't collected when it was needed; some people down here did their part above and beyond and some did NOTHING...JUST TALKED AND CRITICIZED.

    Now Joan I know that's clear as mud! (a vent episode) ;)