Yesterday, July 21st started off so well for me but it would not end well. For those of us who love and respect all dogs the way God made them -we were dismayed that, despite a yeoman's effort by committed people far and wide, the City of Lakewood passed the pit bull ban. I know that I for one had sent the mayor and each of the legislators the internet site -The National Canine Research Center which had a lot of good material re the foolishness of breed specific bans. But they, with the exception of my Ward person - Mary Madigan chose to ignore it. God bless you Mary. I am happy that you are my Ward representative.
They ignored the knowledge that Holland, after 25 years has chosen to rescind their pit bull ban because there had not been any discernable lessoning of dog bites during this period. They also ignored NCRC's addressing Brian Powers' many wrong assertions in his ordinance. It was like they were on a mission and no one, but no one would change their objective which was to ban the pit bull.
One piece of good news in all of this. I happily read this morning that some people in Toledo had challenged their Vicious Dog Ban law and two out of three judges agreed it was unconstitutional. Hooray for Toledo!
Many of us are frightened re the ramification of this ban which may cause
cruelty to innocent gentle pit bull dogs and even those who may just resemble them. Does this ban make allowances for mixed progeny? Well, in the case of Mindy, it did not. Here is Mindy's sad and tragic story:
A kind family found a mother dog with her litter of puppies near a local park.
Even though Mindy was a friendly puppy who became a favorite of the neighborhood, of all the puppies, she could not find a home. Why? The others looked like their mother-a Labrador Retriever, but Mindy looked like the supposed father, the "dreaded American Pit Bull Terrier." The family, fearful for her fate in a "shelter," decided to keep her.
One day the back door was accidentally left open and Mindy was gone when the family came home. Despite putting up signs, they were unable to find her. Later they learned that a kindly elderly neighbor just 3 blocks away would feed Mindy with the scraps of food she left on the porch each day. The dear lady did not want to call the shelter because they banned the breed and she knew Mindy would be euthanized.
But one day Mindy's luck ran out and some local thugs used her as bait for dog fighting. Finally, left tied to a fence and covered in bite wounds, she was heard making a whining sound which sounded like blood gurgling in a dog's mouth according to the person who found her. The officers came out and even though seeing her in this deplorable cruel condition, they were still afraid of this gentle ''pit bull" who had never even so much as growled at anyone. They put the long "catch-pole" with the metal noose around her neck and tightened it. Because she would not walk, they dragged her, and out of fear she defecated on herself.
Even though there was a witness to Mindy's horrible abuse, the officers did not pursue it. They obviously weren't too concerned about an abused pit bull case among their 300 open files and just let it lapse. The cruel and sadistic animal abusers would get away with this cruelty because soon the case was marked "unresolved" and closed. Mindy's life was not important to these people in this town. I believe every creature is important to the God who made them.
At the "shelter" she received no veterinary attention and her wounds would not heal. To this point I have paraphrased Nathan J. Winograd's account but for the end, I quote him verbatim re the shameful treatment of Mindy in the "shelter" just because she was part pit bull:
".......she was taken to a rear compound behind a door marked "staff only"
where the glass window was covered in dark paper. To get there, officers
took her past the children's drawing of happy families with dogs and cats,
through the overhang with large blue letters that read "Society for the
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals," and into a room adjacent to a plaque
commemorating the completion of the "shelter" with the inscription: "ALL
LIFE IS PRECIOUS."
Mindy lay there for 72 hours while dogs came and went. All of them were Pit Bulls. Most of them were friendly, but that did not matter......Once a day she was given a bowl of dry kibble and her water dish was refilled, but she did not have the strength to eat and she was in pain.
After three days, she was "catch-poled" again. As one employee held her down by the neck, another came in with a needle....She tried to free herself, but the pole tightened around her neck. She tried to stand up, but her legs felt wobbly and she fell back down. Out of fear, she once again defecated on herself. Suddenly she felt nauseous and vomited. Then another person came in. She crawled into the corner and cowered, the pole still tight around her neck. They stood over her. She wanted to get away but she was too weak to move. Mindy was given poison from a bottle marked "Fatal-plus." She went limp and let out a last breath. Urine spilled onto the kennel floor. Some time later, her body was thrown in an incinerator.''
Dear, dear Mindy and all the other innocent pit bulls who suffered and will
suffer your fate as told and described so well by Nathan Winograd -the author of this internet site called "Failing the American Pit Bull Terrier." We have created an Auschwitz for dogs. How ashamed I am of the people who have decided that you are cruel and unloving. For me, it is they who are cruel and unloving. I hope your story will become the rallying cry for people who will try to combat the hysteria surrounding your breed. One day I am confident we will win, but sadly probably not before there will be many more Mindys who will go through the same hell that you went through. People with kind and loving hearts are incensed over your treatment. Hopefully, through prayer and commitment we will overcome this wall of hate and
(Nathan Winograd has also written the book "Redemption" for anyone who wants to learn more about the animal condition.)