Wednesday, January 17, 2018

We need more responsible dog owners in T&T

 There has been much public debate in the media on the dog control legislation which is being amended by the present Government. I understand the view taken by many that there will be a crisis once this legislation is passed. There are many who will be unable to financially care for these dogs and there will be those who will not be able or care to take up the responsibilities required for caring for these dogs, and this is what will lead to the increase in stray pitbulls.

Many say this will defeat the purpose of the bill as now these homeless, petrified, hungry dogs will pose a greater threat to people. Some have voiced their non-support of the breed-specific legislation, as they claim their pitbulls are the most peaceful, loving and loyal dogs, and should not be the only ones targeted as “killers”.

I do not own a pitbull, but I do have dogs and they are the light of my life and I completely understand the bond between a person and their dog. It is for this very reason that I fail to understand why these people are the same ones who choose to dump their dogs on the streets to suffer. These are domesticated ani­mals which are accustomed to food, shelter and lots of love, and in one moment they are on the streets, confused and alone.

If these people claim to love their dogs, why would they subject the poor creatures to such inhumane treatment? Surely, if one cannot afford the insurance policy, they can at least make some attempt to find someone who can and is willing to adopt the dog. A last resort could be forking out a couple hundred dollars to put the dog to sleep peacefully. This may be a tough situation, but it is about the lesser of two evils.

As far as the requirements for housing of these dogs go, I am in full support. There is a great need for owners to be more responsible for their actions or inaction.

While everybody is concerned for the dogs (and rightly so), nobody is concerned about the victims. Throughout all the debates, I have heard nothing about the victims and the pain they go through. Some are not as lucky as others.

Have we already forgotten about the grandmother who was mauled to death in clear view of the public? That death sparked many debates on dangerous dogs and the need for more stringent legislation. Here we have legislation being formulated and we have jumped ship. 

Joanne Hall

La Horquette