Why do we need an ordinance outlining the proper care for a dog? Answer: Because asking some dog owners to be responsible and act responsibly is a waste of perfectly good breath.
On Friday alone, there were three calls on the scanner reporting issues with dogs. One woman reported that she had to jump back into her vehicle to escape being mauled by a Rottweiler. The owner gave some nonsense excuse to the officer for her dog running at large. Because the Rottweiler made its way back home and it didn’t actually bite anyone, nothing came of it.
I have zero tolerance from irresponsible dog owners. Dogs require commitment, money, upkeep and supervision. If you are lacking in any of those areas, do yourself, your family, your neighborhood and the dog you’re thinking about taking home a huge favor and buy a fish instead.
When you bring home a dog, you’re bringing home another member of your family. Certain breeds live longer than others. Be willing to accept that commitment. Dogs shouldn’t be cast away when you discover later that you lack the commitment. Educate yourself first.
I’ve never met a cost-free dog. Baby’s first vet visit cost $175. She was adopted from Warren County Animal Control and Adoption Center. I wanted to make sure she didn’t have any unforeseen illnesses going on that we needed to deal with ASAP. Each visit since has been around the $100 mark, except when she had a blood vessel burst in her ear. Two surgeries and numerous laser treatments to try to simulate healing of the surgical incision cost around $800. Her ear drops, which have been used since that time, cost $28 a bottle.
Vet visits are both costly and part of the responsibility of being a pet owner. Having a dog goes above and beyond providing food, water and shelter.
Let’s not forget having it spayed or neutered. If you aren’t willing to do that, please don’t get a dog. There are far too many unwanted animals. As long as there are unwanted animals, I’m against breeding for money. Breeders are part of the problem. That might be a hard pill to swallow, but it’s true.
Last, but definitely not least, is supervision. Dogs should never be allowed to roam free. If you want a dog, its supervision is your responsibility. Period. Don’t be that neighbor: the one who’s notorious for letting the dog out and going back inside. Walk your dog on a leash, please.
I’m not a fan of tethering a dog or leaving it in a pen 24-7. Dogs want to be family members and not outcasts. They need socialization. They want interaction with us. A dog spending its life in a pen or tethered is cruel. If that’s the plan, please don’t bring home a dog.
Yes, I think we need an ordinance requiring the proper care for dogs. No, I don’t believe it will ever happen.
Standard reporter Lisa Hobbs can be reached at 473-2191.