Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Dogs at large are a problem



    In response to the recent dogs-at-large article in the Friday, July 26, Idaho Mountain Express, I wanted to add my family’s story to the growing list of episodes of dog violence in our community.
    In early July 2012, our family cat, Owl, was killed by a neighbor’s dog. We live on a quiet street in Hailey, in south Woodside, and this event was very unexpected and traumatizing to say the least.  
    In this case, the dog actually broke into our house through a door that was cracked and killed our cat in the living room of our home. My husband arrived home to find Owl’s dead body with the dog still inside the house. The dog, a small breed weighing less than 20 pounds, then ran away. My husband was left to deal with the mess and our family cat’s deceased remains. Fortunately, my daughter was not home at the time, and did not have to witness this awful event.
    We were able to locate the owner of the dog, who lived just around the block. She was charged and convicted of misdemeanor “Dog at Large,” and we subsequently received restitution from this person. I know that the dog owner was truly horrified by what her dog had done, and very sorry for our loss. However, the reality is that this tragedy was completely preventable, had the owner kept her dog from running free.
    As the Express article points out, most dogs are gentle and friendly family pets. However, when dogs are allowed to run free and uncontrolled, they can become unpredictable and dangerous. I am speaking out in the hopes that there will not be any more sad incidents like ours in the future.
Susan Dreyfus Bates
Hailey




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