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From the Article sited by Betsy "some dog lovers and those in the rescue and animals rights movements have advanced the idea of "no-kill" policies in public shelters, where virtually all dogs—especially those considered "adoptable"—would be kept alive, for years if necessary, until homes are found for them or they die natural deaths. "

Seems Mr. Katz has a pervent sense of the "no-Kill" movement start by the then President of the SF/SPCA

From Redefining pet overpopulation: The no-kill movement and the new jet setters
Richard Avanzino has stated repeatedly that saving every life is not the goal of the no-kill movement. From the San Francisco Adoption Pact forward, he has always spelled out that the goal is to prevent the euthanasia of adoptable, and eventually of treatable animals. The no-kill philosophy recognizes the need to euthanize animals that cannot be rehabilitated. The pact [1] describes non-rehabilitatable as, \"cats and dogs for whom euthanasia is the most Humane alternative due to disease or injury…vicious cats and dogs, the placement of whom would constitute a danger to the public…cats and dogs who pose a public health hazard…Using the Adoption Pact as an example, no-kill also recognizes that shelters \"shall have the right to define the terms 'adoptable,' 'treatable,' and 'non-rehabilitatable.'\"
Michael Tefts
 

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"Rescued, puppy mill, and incompetently bred dogs have more behavioral problems than properly bred purebreds or thoroughly evaluated shelter dogs. That's often why they need rescue in the first place..."


Quite a trite and less than useful evaluation.
Any behavior is a combination of genetics and the environment. It has been clearly demonstrated the importance of early socialization in puppy development Puppy mill dogs can often spend this time crate confined in puppy stores and incompetent breeders may spend too little time socializing the dogs before being sold, but compentently bred dogs from some of the well known kennel names can and do suffer from the same problem. Poor socialiation at a young age is the cause of most behavioral problems rather than poor breeding. This can and does routinely occur regardless of the dogs breeding.

Breeders Round Table: Puppy Socialization

Critical Periods in Canine Development

Sensory, Emotional and Social Development of Young Dog


Michael Tefts
 

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"When people buy, rescue, or otherwise acquire a dog from unscrupulous breeders or amateur rescue groups, they are making a decision with ethical consequences. They have a profound responsibility to consider their actions; to gauge the dog's behavior, to train it thoroughly and rigorously, to protect other humans and dogs from harm."

This is the comment however I Find most exasperating. What is an "Amateur rescue group"?
The dog in question was acquired from a so called good source . An most importantly is does not matter the source of the dog every dog owner has the "profound responsibility to consider their actions; to gauge the dog's behavior, to train it thoroughly and rigorously, to protect other humans and dogs from harm."

Michael Tefts
 

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"People with little experience may find themselves in the position of deciding which dog lives and which doesn't, and inexperienced people tend to err in an unsafe direction. "

Is not reserved with purebred rescue it also occurs at government and privately run shelters across the country as so welled explained in the link I provided above Redefining pet overpopulation: The no-kill movement and the new jet setters

In no small measure, one cause of the problem is the very success of spay and nueter progams in many parts of the country. No longer are the shelters overwhelmed with dog and culling only the one with the best chance at sucessful adoption. When no longer need, the shelters /rescue are not closing but expanding importing dogs, and trying to rehabilitate dogs with questionable chances. This problem is not restricted to behavioral issue but expands to health issue too. Too often large resources are spent trying to one or two dogs.


The animal rights movement not to be confused with animal welfare also plays a part as many privately and public shelters are dominated with the additude that breed of animals is bad. Therefore the mission of rescue is to be the sole provider of pet animals. Which sets up situations with shelters importing dogs, and adopting out dogs not suitable for adoption.

Part of the problem also lies in the fact there is no clear line delimiting adoptable an not. Give a particular circumstance with a behavioral problem may integrate successfuly into society but be truely dangerous in another. Therefore adoption decisions also need to take into account the ability of adopting family to properly manage a dog with behavior problems.


IMHO the rescue model is a better one than the shelter model because it is a more realistic setting to evaluate the dogs ability to intergrate in society. The confiment and issolation of most shelter environments does not mimic an adoptive dogs environment therefore temperment testing and behavior exhibited by a dog in this type of environment is skewed. A dog that has been living freely in a foster environment with cats and kids over an extended time is much more likely to be able to adapt to a similar environment with a different family than one only exposed to kids and/or cats during a brief temperment test.

I do not dispute that rescue/shelter and other sources of dogs are distributing a higher percentage of potentially dangerious dogs. I do thing however MR. Katz missed the boat on the cause. It is more systemic than "amatuers" or "fanatics" involvement but change in society as a whole.

In the case sited the cause can not be attributed to any of the so called cause he rails against but that of an individual who decided to adopted a particular dog from a shelter that was of breding that would be more difficult to place and nearing so called "death row" There was no indication of behavioral problems before the incident. Such incidents have occured with properly bred purebred dogs.

Michael tefts
 

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When looking at the so called underlying statistics one has to wonder if there is an actual increase in violent dogs or if it is just over hype and exageraged media attention.


From the CDC Nonfatal Dog Bite--Related Injuries Treated in Hospital Emergency Departments --- United States, 2001
Of an estimated 333,700 patients treated for dog bites in emergency departments (EDs) in 1994 (2), approximately 6,000 (1.8%) were hospitalized (3). To estimate the number of nonfatal dog bite--related injuries treated in U.S. hospital EDs, CDC analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System-All Injury Program (NEISS-AIP). This report summarizes the results of the analysis, which indicate that in 2001, an estimated 368,245 persons were treated in U.S. hospital EDs for nonfatal dog bite--related injuries.
Comes nowhere close to the 37% increase sited in the article.
In the last decade, the number of dogs in America rose 2 percent annually while the number of bites increased 37 percent.
Which while not stated This stat is an intepretation of two different survey one in 1986 and the other 1994 hardly a current or relevant statistic.
Dog Bite Liabilityby Insurance Iformation Institute
According to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, the number of dog bites requiring medical attention increased from 585,000 in 1986 to 800,000 in 1994, an increase of 37 percent (latest data available).
Given the source over states the 800,000 figure nor is it the latest figures from the NCIPC I have a tendency to believe this statistic of an increase is over stated as well. Even worse inditement is the estimate for 1986 has a standard error of >20% Cause of Nonfatal injuries in the United States 1986
Dog bites how big a problemthe 1994 was conducted by phone telephone survey of households while the 1986 study was based on 23.802 household the 1994 survey is 5238 households which means the 1994 survey has even a higher standard error rate making a comparison of the numbers unreliable.

The approximate 10% increase between 1994 and 2001 is a more reliable number being based on a survey of actual emergency room visits but still considering sample sizes is not wholely accurate.

Signed: Michael Tefts
[Edited to comply with Politics Forum guidelines]


[ November 21, 2004, 02:35 PM: Message edited by: Betsy Iole ]
 
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