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Ted Moore
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A cautionary tale on many levels, the most important of which, in my view, is that, at the intersection of politics and public safety, it's the naively trusting who usually get themselves, and the rest of us, run down.
Our commitment to keep the animals in our shelters safe from further abuse, abandonment or neglect is admirable. Eliminating as potential adopters people who want their new dogs to accompany them as they travel the country in RV's or long-haul trucks, or to live with them in their small urban apartments, or to be their companions in condominiums, is not helpful to that end. Commitment saves animals. Extremist and irrational judmentalism kills them.
Toggle Commented Oct 27, 2011 on KC Star Letter to the Editor at KC DOG BLOG
A significant percentage of the electorate seems to be coming to its senses after 50 years of government bread and circuses. Excellent job, Brent, of identifying the opportunities such a return to adulthood offers those of us who have reaized all along, "Government can't solve the problem. Government is the problem". And wake me up when public policy recognizes that at no time or place in human history has taxing a society's most productive people and activities been a) sustainable beyond a few decades or b) the root cause of a permanent reduction in poverty or any other social ill. It ain't the revenue. It's the philosophy.
If Vick is granted permission to own a dog, my guess is it would be the safest, best cared-for companion animal in the country. The first frustration-motivated jerk on the leash, harsh word after some minor trangression, or leaf falling into the outside dog dish would generate global press. So I'll continue to focus on the "marginally adoptable" dogs at my local Humane Society (which is unaffiliated with Pacelle's organization, of course). If one of them doesn't make it, it would be as a ripple on the ocean.
Some elements of the pattern seem clear: children vulnerable to the ignorance and irresponsibility of adult caregivers left unspuervised to mingle with 1 or more untrained and/or unsocialized dogs. Elderly people vulnerable to their own or their well-meaning relatives'/friends' irresponsibility and ignorance left alone with dogs with a history or aggression or protectiveness. Those of us in a position to inform the public from a credible organizational platform need to seize this teachable moment however we can. As always, the root of the problem lies in the people, not the animals.
Gets no better than this.
Toggle Commented Jun 3, 2010 on "Boom-dog" finds his forever home at KC DOG BLOG
I knew, eventually, MichelleD would put up posts I could agree with without reservation. It's simple, really, if you believe the average potential owner is, much more often than not, a better judge of what kind of dog will suit him or her and his or her family and lifestyle than any well-intentioned shelter adoption counselor or rescue manager. Holding this view doesn't imply one can't be responsible when working with potential adopters. After all, nobody wants a headline that reads, "ESCAPED SHELTER DOG EATS BARACK OBAMA". (Well...) But the kind of clubby, "we know best" arrogance routinely encountered by prospective adopters, especially at breed rescues, is counterproductive to all concerned, especially the dog who watches the perfectly suited, but not suited perfectly, family drive off to the breeder or pet store, where they WILL get their next dog. Enter the transaction seeking ways to make it work. Follow up after the dog is placed and be as helpful as time and resources permit. And if the dog comes back, so what? It got a shot at a real home, which is what it would be asking you for, if it could.
Toggle Commented Jun 3, 2010 on Denying adoptors, or making it work at KC DOG BLOG
I'm the captain of a lifeboat with room for 10 people. I'm in mid-ocean, and the water temperature is 35 degrees F. There are other lifeboats in the area, but they are full, barely visible in the distance, or both. I have 2 open seats. Nathan paddles over. In he comes. Brent swims up. Welcome aboard. Then we spot Michelle, clinging to a barely-floating piece of debris. Michelle is young and, we note, very pregnant. Fred, sitting up in the bow, is 86. He's wheezy and becoming delirious. He told us earlier in the afternoon he has no family and that his health has been declining for years. I’m the captain. I am responsible for the lives of all aboard. I have a revolver. No one else is armed. Michelle is now clinging to the gunwale, and I have hold of her wrist. She looks me straight in the eye. So does Fred. What do I do? The staff of the shelter I volunteer for asks itself this question several times a day. They'd rather be building more lifeboats, or better yet making sure ships don't sink in the first place, and they spend as much time and money on these noble endeavors as they can. But today, right now, all the kennels are full, a young collie mix abandoned in a foreclosed home has just arrived, and an 8 year-old, 3-legged pit mix in the back kennel has just started its second year looking for an adopter. I'm in charge of the shift that day. All the collie breed rescues want purebreds. All the other "no-kill" shelters are full. The pound has a 3-day hold policy. What do I do?
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Feb 18, 2010