Wednesday, January 14, 2009

How to keep your dog safe under A300

The NS SPCA's acknowledgement that HRM's bylaw A300 is a piece of shit and dangerous to dogs should be a wake up call to all dog owners that they might not be doing everything they should be to keep their dogs safe - and it's just by the grace of dog that Animal Control hasn't targetted them - and that they might be next. And that's why it's so important that we get the legislation changed as soon as possible.

This is also one of the reasons why certain dog communities within the HRM has not rallied their forces behind Francesca Rogier because when it comes down to it - she did not keep Brindi SAFE. As the owner of a rescue dog with obvious issues - she did not manage them properly and Brindi got into trouble - regardless of how unevenly Animal Control treated her, regardless of how her community ganged up against her because she came from "away" and were for some reason afraid of her, regardless of the fact that she says that all the altercations happened on her property line - she failed to keep Brindi safe - and there were multiple calls to Animal Control which led to Brindi's seizure.

And people could not support her - because there are a lot of us who have somewhat less than perfect dogs - and because of this very barbaric bylaw - there are unbelievable lengths that some of us go to on a daily basis to keep our dogs SAFE. Because that is the #1 thing to do when we take on the task of dog ownership.

What do we do to keep our dogs safe? Some of us are up at 5am 7 days a week to get our dogs to the beach so that no one else is there to encounter our less than perfect dogs, some of us will drive an hour to a place that we know that no one ever goes to so that we won't encounter any dogs or people, some of us never take our dogs off-leash - BEFORE we open our front door - ALL our dogs are ON LEASH. We hire dog behaviour experts to work with our dogs one on one to work through our dogs' problems so that they can be managed.

We get politically active - without our dogs having gotten into trouble first - to improve the quality of our dogs' lives, to give them access to better services and a better way of life - and also so that maybe other dogs won't have to be so less than perfect because of their previous horrible life circumstances.

So certainly, the best way to keep your dog safe right now until A300 is rewritten - is - keep your dog SAFE. If they are prone to certain proclivities - acknowledge that and manage it, and get help for it. Because if you get caught up in the web of Animal Control services - it's probably not going to end well - and you will have failed as a good dog owner, because you will have failed to keep your dog SAFE.

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