Dog control exists for many reasons

A few years ago the newspaper I worked at received a press release from local police about a dog running loose that...

A few years ago the newspaper I worked at received a press release from local police about a dog running loose that had been killed. The police couldn’t identify the dog and wanted to let the owners know the situation. The incident involved a dog that was running loose, the dog ran out into a busy intersection that I was familiar with, the dog was hit by a car, the dog had no collar and hence no tag, so no one knew who’s property it was.

Another fellow I worked with, or idiot as I like to call him, said, “That’s the driver’s fault, how could they do that?”

Sorry, idiot, you’re wrong. If a dog is running at large in violation of the bylaw and gets run over, that’s not the motorist’s fault. It’s the irresponsible dog owner’s fault.

This was a community that had a dog control bylaw, as most communities do. The dog control bylaw states no dog shall be running at large. Ever. Plus, all dogs require a collar and municipal tag. Why do communities require dogs be tied up, and have a tag at all times?

Reason one is that the bylaw requires a collar and tag so that everyone in the community knows who owns this dog. In the incident above, no one could even contact the owners.

Reason two, dogs can be dangerous. No, I’m not talking about your Shi Tzu or your Teacup Chihuahua, I’m talking about German Shepherds, Alaskan Malamutes, Great Pyrenees, pit bulls, mastiffs, Akitas and other large breeds. Large dogs, even a lone one, can seriously injure or kill a person, especially children. Now society has to deal with the cost of a dog attack, including the financial impact on the healthcare system and the pain and suffering to the victim. Totally avoidable and unnecessary.

Plus, the psychological effects of a dog attack on a kid can be serious. I’ve known people who were attacked by a dog when they were young, and they were terrified of dogs for the rest of their lives. It’s not fair that someone must live with that fear and anxiety because an irresponsible dog owner was too lazy to keep track of their property.

People aren’t the only ones at threat by dogs running at large. Cats are a favoured target of dogs, and a large dog can easily injure or kill a pet feline. The cat owner now has to fork out for possible vet bills or worse. Anyone who’s had heartbroken family members standing around a dead pet knows what I mean.

Other dogs are also threatened by canines running at large. A co-worker of mine at a previous newspaper was walking her dog on a hiking path. She had her collie on a leash, as was the requirement. Along the trail comes a lazy, irresponsible dog owner with his large Boxer running free. Out of the blue and for no reason, the Boxer attacked my friend’s dog and inflicted hundreds of dollars worth of injuries, including punctures in the eyelid, nostril and throat. The lazy, irresponsible Boxer owner made a lame comment such as, “No harm done,” and fled the scene, so my co-worker couldn’t even get his name to force him to pay the vet bills. Back home we call someone like that a “scumbag.”

Obviously, there are many reasons for dog control bylaws that don’t include violence, these are sometimes deceptively called nuisances. Defecation is a serious problem. Just ask anyone who uses municipal hiking trails or has a lazy, irresponsible dog owner walking a canine past their lawn. Decaying, steaming dog doo is not nice.

Barking isn’t fun to listen to. Dogs running at large in the neighbourhood barking for hours on end becomes tiresome.

There’s also the issue of destruction. Dogs can be very destructive, ranging from chewing to digging. Don’t underestimate them. One dog can do a lot of damage, and if you’re a lazy, irresponsible dog owner, your free-as-a-bird canine can cause a lot of harm to other people’s property.

It’s either have rules for dogs and their owners, or have a bylaw that states, “All dogs can run free into traffic, and any collisions caused are the fault of the motorists.”

I hope all you dog owners out there use your brain in a better fashion than the idiot I worked with.

Stu Salkeld is the editor of The Pipestone Flyer and writes a regular column for the paper.

 

Just Posted

The City of Red Deer sits at 249 active cases of the virus, after hitting a peak of 565 active cases on Feb. 22. (Black Press file image)
Red Deer down to 119 active COVID-19 cases

Province identifies 179 new cases Saturday

Member Terry Parsons’ custom built track vehicle.
Forestburg’s Area 53 Racetrack gears up for action-packed season

Site will also host a portion of the ‘Miles of Mayhem’ event in July

Sabrina Wilde in front of a recently purchased monster truck. Submitted.
Thorsby business women a finalist for 2021 Alberta Women’s Entrepreneurship Award

Sabrina Wilde with Lone Wolf Mechanical is a finalist for the entrepreneurial award.

Grade 12 students at Wetaskiwin Composite High School took place in the annual water fight off school property on June 11, 2021. Shaela Dansereau/ Pipestone Flyer.
Graduating students in Wetaskiwin throw water fight after being told it could result in suspension

Students were told their participation could result in them being barred from graduation ceremonies.

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Airport ground crew offload a plane carrying just under 300,000 doses of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine which is developed by the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies at Pearson International Airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
1st batch of Johnson & Johnson vaccines won’t be released in Canada over quality concerns

The vaccines were quarantined in April before they were distributed to provinces

The arrest south of Winnipeg occurred before Bernier was to arrive at a protest in the city. (Twitter/Maxime Bernier)
Maxime Bernier arrested following anti-rules rallies in Manitoba: RCMP

He’s been charged with exceeding public gathering limits and violating Manitoba’s requirement to self-isolate

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for the G7 Summit, at the airport in Newquay, United Kingdom, Thursday, June 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Details on Canada’s vaccine sharing plan coming Sunday, up to 100 million doses

Canada’s high commissioner to the UK says details will come after the G7 summit

Most Read