Monday, September 30, 2013

Bones, the end of the story

The Bones saga has come to a not unexpected end.  The remains of Bones were unearthed from the property formerly known as North West Ohio Underdog Rescue, run by self proclaimed dangerous dog expert Kat Sutter.  For the Toledo Blade coverage of the recovery of Bones remains please click here.

For the the original blog on the disappearance of Bones click here.  Fore more information on the Bones disaster please click here.   And for still more click here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and finally here.

The Lexus Project has posted their thoughts on the death of Bones.  This statement appeared on their public Facebook page on 9/29/2013.

Bones is dead. We exhumed his body. Please read.
Bones is dead, he was sick, he was never brought to the vet and was starved to death by Kat before Christmas 2012. She made him suffer. She buried him next to her garage, then concocted the story that he was stolen January 5, 2013 hoping to use her father's funeral to divert attention from her crimes. She had people call day, night and the middle of the night giving false sightings knowing that Bones that been dead weeks already.

Though the many inconsistencies in Kat's story made us sure she was lying, it was not until this week that we got a break, in the form of an email that led us to obtain the remains of Bones. Today, Bones body was exhumed from Kats backyard. We believe there are other bodies back there, but we are sure she will be busy in the next few days trying to cover her tracks by exhuming the others. The exhumation of Bones body was done with the press there, the whole process was captured. Necropsy this evening confirmed it was Bones. Cause of death will be determined as well.

We were also informed that Sasha, the malamute was shot in the head. There was a dispute about her training and $500.00 so Kat had the dog offed. Sasha is also buried in her backyard as well as a dog named Bear. Our sources tell us that the backyard smells like death.

Bones loved and trusted Kat. She betrayed his trust and watched him die right in front of her eyes.

Justice will be served, but we need all your help.

We truly believed we were doing the right thing sending bones to Kat. We had 2 outside references and nothing was on the internet to dispute the references. We got pictures and happy texts with positive updates from Kat up until September of 2012. It was only after Bones went missing that everyone seemed to know what a monster he went to. Everyone except those 2 references. I pray they open their eyes now.

Please Call the Toledo Ohio police department.


Tell them how you feel about Ms. Katherine Sutter and the killing fields at 4905 Luann Drive, Toledo Ohio

Call animal warden. Julie Lyle @ 419-213-2800 about the dogs that are still buried at the house.

Animal control in Woods County where she now lives.

Chief Warden, Andrew Snyder 419-354-9367

Deputy warden, Rodney Cook 419-354-9093

Deputy warden, Nora Davis, 419-354-9239

Deputy warden, Justin Gallagher, 419-373-4947

And call the humane society because Kat has dogs NOW. And we are VERY, VERY concerned about these dogs. 419-891-9777

Special thanks to JIm Sielicki from the Toledo Blade who stayed with this story from when Bones supposedly went missing in January until now.

The Lexus Project

Forever Rest In Peace

Photo: Bones is dead, he was sick, he was never brought to the vet and was  starved to death by Kat before Christmas 2012. She made him suffer. She buried him next to her garage, then concocted the story that he was stolen January 5, 2013 hoping to use her father's funeral to divert attention from her crimes.  She had people call day, night and the middle of the night giving false sightings knowing that Bones that been dead weeks already. 

Though the many inconsistencies in Kat's story made us sure she was lying, it was not until this week that we got a break, in the form of an email  that led us to obtain the remains of Bones. Today, Bones body was exhumed from Kats backyard. We believe there are other bodies back there, but we are sure she will be busy in the next few days trying to cover her tracks by exhuming the others. The exhumation of Bones body was done with the press there, the whole process was captured. Necropsy this evening confirmed it was Bones. Cause of death will be determined as well.

We were also informed that Sasha, the malamute was shot in the head. There was a dispute about her training and $500.00 so Kat had the dog offed. Sasha is also buried in her backyard as well as a dog named Bear.  Our sources tell us that the backyard smells like death. 

Bones loved and trusted Kat. She betrayed his trust and watched him die right in front of her eyes. 

Justice will be served, but we need all your help. 

We truly believed we were doing the right thing sending bones to Kat. We had 2 outside references and nothing was on the internet to dispute the references. We got pictures and happy texts with positive updates from Kat up until September of 2012.  It was only after Bones went missing that everyone seemed to know what a monster he went to. Everyone except those 2 references. I pray they open their eyes now. 

Please Call the Toledo Ohio police department. 


Tell them how you feel about Ms. Katherine Sutter and the killing fields at 4905 Luann Drive, Toledo Ohio

Call animal warden. Julie Lyle @ 419-213-2800 about the dogs that are still buried at the house. 

Animal control in Woods County where she now lives.

Chief Warden, Andrew Snyder 419-354-9367

Deputy warden, Rodney Cook 419-354-9093

Deputy warden, Nora Davis, 419-354-9239

Deputy warden, Justin Gallagher, 419-373-4947

And call the humane society because Kat has dogs NOW. And we are VERY, VERY concerned about these dogs.  419-891-9777

Special thanks to JIm Sielicki from the Toledo Blade who stayed with this story from when Bones supposedly went missing in January until now.

The Lexus Project

Forever Rest In Peace

On 9/29/2013 this statement was added "We didn't think it was necessary to announce who referred TLP to Kat, but apparently others disagree. One of the groups that referred her was "URGENT Ohio". They do advocate for dogs and they made a BIG mistake so please don't take way from what they do do. I'm sure they feel just as bad as we do, possibly worse since we are not an adoption or placement group and Bones was one of our very first non greyhound cases, we were led to believe that this was THE only place for Bones to go. As long as they learned from their mistake and sees now what a deadly mistake it was, there's no reason to undermine the good they do."

It will be interesting to see if a cause of death can be determined, starvation seems unlikely but certainly possible, however it stands to reason that there would be a substantial difference in weight between a living dog and a skeleton exhumed nine months later.  The weight difference as the result of decomposition seems worth consideration.

 The Lexus post discusses the two other dogs that Sutter claimed went missing from her operation.  Lexus states that Sasha was shot in the head and buried in the yard and that Bear was buried in the yard as well.  The Toledo Blade does not report these facts, only suspicions of these charges.

Apparently the Blade had a reporter and photographer on site when Bones skeleton was found but the article states that police were called only after the remains were found.  Police refused to view the yard or the remains, this was an illegal search. What authority did the Lexus Project volunteers and the Toledo Blade's photographer and reporter have to be on the property?   Would any evidence obtained by illegal search be of any use?  I don't think so.

Take a look at the slide show provided by the Blade.  What responsible legal organization would send a designated dangerous dog to this tiny home on a street of small yards without fences, to live in a garage with fifteen other designated dangerous dogs?  Lexus Project did. It must be kept in mind that the Lexus Project has initiated an effort similar to the one used to "save" Bones.  This time they want to save Onion, a dog that killed the grandchild of the owner.  If they "save" Onion will they use more care in selecting a long term dangerous dog facility than they did when they chose the North West Ohio Underdog Rescue?

Did the Lexus Project "save" Bones?  Even if Sutter had been the lion tamer that the Lexus Project thought she was, is living out the rest of the dog's life in a little garage behind a tiny home in Toledo Ohio really living? Would this "life" be significantly better than humane euthanization in New York?  Will this mess be repeated with Onion?

What about Onion?  What has been the quality of his life since the death of Jeremiah Eskew-Shanahan who was attacked and killed by this dog at the toddler's first birthday party in the spring of 2012?

Photo: Here's our beautiful boy.
This is Onion, this is how he has "lived" for the last year and a half.  Is this "living"?  The Lexus Project is responsible for this.

The Lexus Project works hard to rescue Greyhounds and this is a commendable effort, I respect this greatly. I can't respect the meddling in vicious dog dispositions.  This should be a local matter, decided by those close to the investigations and having a stake in the community, without the bullying by out of state animal rights lawyers.  The interstate transport of violent dogs should be regulated by federal law.  

For video of the former site of North West Ohio Underdog Rescue and the current location of this "rescue" please click here.  Note that the Lexus Project is now trying to get a court order to dig at the Luann Ave. location.  A bit late.  It should also be noted that the Lexus Project no longer owns Bones, he was signed over to a local bully rescue group in April.

Update 10/1/2013  The New York Times quotes veterinarian Stephen Graber as stating  “I can’t positively say he was starved, but I would bet he was in an extreme state of malnutrition.”  Malnutrition is inferred from skeletal measurements, the malnourished do not grow to expected size.  This was a massive adult dog and there is no proof of, or reason to believe that the dog was sick or starved. This is not the cause of death that the Lexus Project hoped for.

Per the Times article, Robin Mittasch of the Lexus Project organized the dig at the Luann Ave. property although the Lexus Project no longer owned the dog and had no legal authority to be on that property.  Did she think to run this idea past her husband, Rich Rosenthal the attorney?  Can you imagine the breakfast table conversation?  "Rich, I'm thinking about organizing some of our volunteers to trespass and dig up a property in Toledo Ohio.  An illegal search for the remains of a dog we don't own.  What do you think?"    

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Pit bull roundup 9/18/2013, the fun in Ohio just never ends.

Zanesville Ohio

9/5/2013  A Zanesville police officer was attacked by a pit bull while he was investigating a breaking and entering report.  The officer chased 44 year old suspect Jason Williams to the front door of a house.  There was a struggle on the front porch, Williams entered the house and ran up the stairs.  Williams was heard to order his pit bull to attack the officer "sic him, Fathead."  Fathead the pit bull bit officer Scott Comstock on the arms several times and was shot in self defense by the police officer.  Fathead bull was removed from the premises by the dog warden, euthanization and rabies testing were expected.  Per the Zanesville Times Recorder "   Muskingum County Prosecutor Mike Haddox said a complaint was filed on Williams for breaking and entering, a fifth-degree felony; theft, a first-degree misdemeanor; possession of criminal tools, a fifth-degree felony; tampering with coin machines, a fifth-degree felony; aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony; and felonious assault on a police officer, a first degree felony. Williams faces a maximum of 25 years in prison for his involvement. Haddox said the maximum amount of time Williams would have faced if he had cooperated with the officer was three years." As is is frequently the case, the pit bull owner made more than a few tactical errors  " As officers searched for him upstairs, the suspect reportedly fell through the ceiling but was not injured, according to police. "

Zanesville police Captain Tony Coury stated to a reporter "I think you always expect something like that might happen and we see dogs and the officers encounter multiple dogs, but the pit bull is the one we fear the most because it can do the most damage." 

The dog was euthanized by the Muskingum County Dog Warden.  Officer Comstock could return to work in a week.

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Dayton Ohio

Animal Resource officers (Montgomery County dog warden Mark Kumpf's staff) were called to a home in East Dayton to investigate possible abandoned dogs, the dogs could be seen at an attic window and appeared to be pit bulls.  Neighbors stated that they had not seen anyone at the house for several days.  The dog owner arrived and by way of explanation, told animal resource officers that he had recently been released from jail.  Who would have thought?    The man was allowed to keep the dogs.

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Dayton Ohio

Unlicensed and unvaccinated pit  bull attacks a Dayton mail carrier.

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Columbus Ohio

Columbus police are called to the scene of a pit bull attack upon a couple walking peacefully in their neighborhood.  The pit bulls were shot as they approached police. The victims were taken to Ohio State University Hospital East. gives more details.  "Claude Holloway and his wife Deborah say they were walking down the street to the convenience store when they noticed a girl, approximately 11-years-old in a yard struggling with a group of dogs. According to the Holloways, there were a total of six dogs, two of whom were pit bulls.
Deborah Holloway said the pit bulls were attacking a puppy and that the child was trying to stop the attack while the other four dogs stood in the yard. Deborah said she picked up a stick and handed it to the child in an effort to help her. The couple says that is when somehow the fence door got loose and the dogs got out."  Claude Holloway told a  reporter  "He was trying to bite me. And I swung at him. That's when I missed. That's when he bit me. The officer was just coming across the alley when he saw that. He come out of the car shooting. He didn't ask nothing. He just started shooting the dog," Claude Holloway said.
Mr. Holloway was bitten on the hand and Mrs. Holloway was bitten on the knee.  They were released from the hospital Friday evening but  will have follow ups with their doctors.  

For video of an interview with the Holloways please click here.

What might the cost of this level of police presence be?  Who do you think will pay for this?  Not the pit bull owner.  Taxpayers in the city of Columbus will pay the bills here.  Who will pay the medical bills for Mr. and Mrs. Holloway?  Don't bet your paycheck that the dog owner will pay it.      
Pit Bull Attack

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West Chester Ohio

Fox19 reports that a West Chester man shot and killed Harley, a pit bull belonging to a neighbor after the person walking the dog was unable to control it.  As the story goes, Shane Bishop was walking a pit bull (presumably on the sidewalk) using a retractable leash (always a bad idea) and lost control.  Monty Hagenschneider was in back yard of his home and had his eleven year old Beagle named Scout with him.

The pit bull attacked Scout IN THE BACK YARD of  Hagenschneider's home.  Hagenschneider was able to pull Harley off his dog and take Scout in the house. The incompetent Shane Bishop was STILL unable to control the dog. Hagenschneider came back out of his home with a gun and shot the pit bull while it was still on his property. Scout was rushed to an Animal Hospital for treatment. Per police, Bishop was not the owner of the pit bull. Both Bishop, and the pit bull owner may face charges for failure to control.  Bishop, no more able  to contain his temper than he was to control the actions of the late pit bull Harley, later returned to Hagenschneider's home to threaten him.  A major neighborhood disturbance broke out. Bishop was arrested for disorderly conduct and was in the Butler County jail on a $400 bond on Monday. Hagenschneider was not charged.

For a better look at how pit bull violence impacts a neighborhood please click here for a video of  the interview with the Beagle owner, a look at the injuries to Scout, and also comments by a neighborhood pit bull supporter.

There never appears to be a shortage of folks willing to stand in front of a camera and deny documented fact. In a mind numbing advocacy statement Barb Bryant, who was not present during the attack on Scout,   tells a reporter " Harley was not like that and the police reports can't be true."  She goes on to describe the neighborhood brawl that broke out when Bishop came back to threaten Hagenschneider. Mr. Hagenschneider is afraid for his life.

Pit bull advocacy loves rhyming slogans and trots out "punish the deed not the breed." Harley's deed was quickly punished and a man fears for his life because of it.  There is something very wrong here.

Note to the staff writer who wrote the Fox19 article -  when a pit bull being walked on a sidewalk bursts into the peaceful backyard of a Beagle owner to maul an eleven year old pet, this is not a "dogfight" it is a pit bull attack.  

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Pit bulls and the United States Postal Service

Dayton Ohio
A postal worker was mauled by a pit bull in Dayton Ohio. Dayton resident Joe Brewer may have saved the life of mail carrier Richard Oberlin, 45 years old, an employee of the United States Postal Service since 1998.  The pit bull burst through a screen door to attack Oberlin. Per   Joe Brewer told a reporter "I come running out here and the dog had him down on the ground and I started yelling at the dog and he backed off immediately."

Dayton Police Sgt. Moises Perez told reporters "It's a possibility we could be investigating a death because this dog was just relentless in his attack. He stood over this gentleman. He was basically helpless,"

The mail carrier's pepper spray can was found on the grass.  Per Police Sgt Perez, mail carrier Richard Oberlin tried to use it but it had no effect on the pit bull.

The mail carrier's blood spattered bag was found where he dropped it while using it as a shield as postal workers are trained to do.

Mail was scattered across the lawn.

Animal Control took the dog away but it took two AC officers plus a friend of the pit bull owner's family to subdue the pit bull.  The dog will be quarantined for 10 days at Montgomery County Dog Warden Mark Kumpf's shelter, the Animal Resource Center.  Please note the physical condition of this pit bull, it appears that she is a breeding female, an income generator.  Roughly a million pit bulls are euthanized in American shelters every year.  Responsible dog owners do not breed pit bulls.

The mail carrier was transported to Miami Valley Hospital where he was listed in good condition on Friday.

The home owner is a woman in poor health, she was was caring for the pit bull for the actual owner, her son, while he was out of town.  There is no record of vaccination and the pit bull is not licensed. 

David VanAllen, a Postal Service spokesman stated that there have been twelve dog attacks upon mail carriers in Dayton Ohio, located in Montgomery County, since last October.  HB 14, the bill that removed requirements for insurance and containment of pit bulls in Ohio was fully and vocally supported by Montgomery County Dog Warden Mark Kumpf.  This bill was promoted as "finally giving dog wardens the tools to deal with vicious dogs.  It appears that those tools have not been used in Dayton.  Will Mark Kumpf use those tools NOW?

For the fiscal year 2012 Dayton Ohio and Cleveland Ohio were tied for 10th place nationally for dog attacks on Postal Workers with 26 attacks each per this press release from the USPS.  Breeds for the Dayton attacks  are not listed but, an online publication for postal workers lists the dogs most likely to bite. The list was taken from the CDC.  Pit bulls top the list, no surprise. It is notable that Dayton did not even make the top dog attack city ranking in 2011, the last year that pit bulls were regulated in the state of Ohio.  

Here are just a few recent attacks on mail carriers across the United States.

Flint Michigan had two pit bull attacks on mail carriers within just a few weeks this summer.  For more information click here.   Please note that the June attack happened as the mail carrier was delivering a package and the pit bull jumped out a window to attack him. Genesee County Commissioners have announced that they intend to work with postal officials to reduce the number of dog attacks.

A Saint Louis County MO mail carrier with 25 years service required 36 stitches after she was attacked by a pit bull in April.  For more information click here.  The story on this attack continues here.  Pit bull owner Barbrial Jones has two pit bulls, a breeding pair.  She stated "this is the first time the three year-old pit bull has ever attacked". Jones insists  that " both dogs are usually friendly and supervised." Gesturing to the female, Baby, she says "You can take off her leash, she still listens.”
Per news reports the pit bulls got out through a hole in the fence (a pit bull breeding operation with a hole in the fence.  Tell me when this is beginning to make sense because I must be missing something here).  Once Ms. Jones pit bulls were at large they were too strong for her to contain them. “They can be aggressive,” Jones admits, “they’re naturally born like that.”  Jones apologized to letter carrier Gwen Moore for her injuries and asked for Moore's forgiveness.  Jones then tried to get Fifty, her male pit bull back from animal control but was told that after quarantine Fifty will be neutered to reduce aggression. Jones and her fiance breed pit bulls as a side business and they "hope to get around" the requirement for neutering her mauler.  The apology looks more like manipulation in order to protect her side income. Pretty much "Hey, since the attack hit the news I better say I'm sorry, but this is business here.  Fifty needs to make lots of little Fifties (remember the statement "they can be aggressive, they're naturally born like that").  Just what Saint Louis County needs, more game bred pits.  
In Pittsburgh PA a fifteen year postal service veteran was attacked by two pit bulls. The USPS stopped delivery of mail on the street where the attack occurred for at least 10 days.  For more information click here
In San Diego CA a mail carrier was attacked by a pit bull.  The pit bull broke through a chain link fence and attacked both the throat and the leg of Buddy Siso.  Mr. Siso required plastic surgery on the injuries to his throat.  He hopes to return to the postal service after his recovery but may not be able to work as a mail carrier in the future.  For more information click here.

Mail carrier Buddy Siso.
Siso stated " “At night, when I’m going to sleep, I can see the eyes of the dog.” Per U-T San Diego "Besides the bites, the attack left Siso with a missing front tooth and several other teeth cracked or loose, an injured shoulder, a fat lip, and a long scratch across his face. He had plastic surgery and still has a long way to go before he has recovered physically and mentally."

Wasilla AK, a pit bull attack sent a mailman to the hospital.  For more information click here.

A Chula Vista CA pit bull owner is unhappy that her pit bull was sprayed with mace by a postal worker. Per RTV6 "Viviana Alcazar called the incident animal cruelty and believes the postal worker was never in danger. Alcazar's fence sits next to mailboxes and when her dog Sampson is out, he barks when someone is outside of the fence. Alcazar said Sampson, a 74-pound pit bull, is a well-trained sweetheart. However, she said Sampson apparently barked at the wrong person Thursday morning."
RTV 6 goes on to say "In July, a mail carrier's neck was ripped open by a pit bull that bounded out of an unlocked gate. In the last three years, two other postal workers died as a result of dog attacks.The attacks have made many mail carriers nervous around big dogs and forced some to carry pepper spray." Sampson the pit bull required some eye drops but has recovered completely. Alcazar states that she will keep Sampson in the house when mail is being delivered. Well, that is a simple solution to the problem, just keep your mauler in the house.

Per U.S Government Info "The U.S. Postal Service reported nearly 5,700 dog attacks on letter carriers across 1,400 cities in 2010, costing the agency almost $1.2 million in medical expenses" in 2010. The $1.2 million does not include lost time and productivity.

Pit bull attacks are expensive and we are all paying the costs.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

BSL works, but rational people know that already.

The Valley Breeze, a publication out of Pawtucket RI, gives us a thoughtful article on how well breed specific legislation actually works.  On September 10, 2013 the Valley Breeze stated 

Bites by pit bulls have dropped dramatically since 2004

 How can this be when organized pit bull advocacy makes the blanket statement that BSL does not work?

Per the Valley Breeze
"PAWTUCKET - The city has seen a dramatic decline in the number of attacks by pit bulls since a 2004 ban on the breed went into effect, according to data released by local officials.
In response to an open records request by The Breeze, the Pawtucket Police Department and Pawtucket Animal Control, through City Solicitor Frank Milos, provided documents showing just how rarely pit bulls have attacked people or animals in the city since the ban was enacted."

Actual numbers are provided for pit bull attacks prior to the breed ban and post breed ban. In the four years prior to the passage of the bred ban police responded to 71 incidents involving pit bulls.  These incidents involved both biting and/or scratching.  Fifty one of these attacks were on people, twenty of the attacks were on animals.  

In the ten years since the passage of the ban there have been 23 pit bull attacks reported to police, 13 of them were attacks on people, 10 attacks on animals. 

Here are year by year totals.
2000 (prior to the breed ban) 20 attacks, 18 attacks on people, 2 on animals
2001                                                   14 attacks,  9 attacks on people,   5 on animals
2002                                                   17 attacks, 14 attacks on people,   3 on animals
2003                                                   20 attacks, 11 attacks on people,   9 on animals

2004 (post breed ban)                  8 attacks,  5 attacks on people,  3 on animals
2005                                                     1 attack on a person, zero on animals
2006                                                     3 attacks,  1 attack on a person,  2 attacks on animals
2007                                                     4 attacks,  1 attack on a person,  3 attacks on animals
2008                                                      no attacks
2009                                                     2 attacks, both on people
2010                                                      no attacks
2011                                                      2 attacks, both on people
2012                                                     no attacks
2013 The Rhode Island Legislature failed to consider the safety of state residents and said "yes" to the special interest lobby of breed specific advocacy and animal rights.   A law was passed in the state legislature  that snatched away the home rule rights of communities, communities may not pass breed specific legislation.  Here are the Pawtucket  totals for 2013 so far,  3 attacks, one on a person and two on animals.

Per the Breeze "John Holmes, Pawtucket's veteran animal control officer and the key proponent of the 2004 ban, said the numbers before and after 2004 "speak for themselves."
"The law's worked," he said. "We didn't put this law in to destroy pit bulls, in fact, quite the opposite."
The last serious pit bull attack in Pawtucket was the day the bill was signed into law, said Holmes. Residents have been safer because of the ban, he said.
"Public safety has always been the issue," he said. "They're just missing so much of what this is all about. We're going backward here."

Of course there is a pit bull owner speaking out against the Pawtucket breed ban, the law that has worked so well to protect the public.  Enter Al Alix, "  Al Alix, the lifelong city resident and real estate agent who plans to challenge the city's pit bull ban in court, told The Breeze he questions the numbers provided by the city. Instead of taking so much time to enforce a blanket ban, said Alix, officials should be spending more time getting to know the dogs they are trying to keep out of the city, like his pit bull "Chubs."

What part of the actual numbers does Mr. Alix fail to understand?  This is black and white stuff here.  

Law makers in Pawtucket intend to continue to enforce their breed ban, Mr. Alix intends to challenge the law in court.  It must be noted that even without the challenge to the Pawtucket breed ban Mr. Alex will be spending some time in court and "Chubs' figures large in that process.  Mr. Alex was cited for violation of the leash law (in addition to harboring a banned breed dog but that is not mentioned in the article).  The hearing originally scheduled for this coming Friday has been postponed until September 20th at 9 a.m. in Pawtucket Municipal Court.  Depending upon the outcome of that hearing  Alex states he plans to "take the city to court" over any effort to take Chubs away.

OK now, here we have it.  The "responsible owner" of a pit bull, in a community with a 10 year old pit bull ban, who has been cited merely with a failure to leash that pit bull (in a community with a pit bull ban) and feels that he has been wronged and that the law needs to be changed to suit his tastes.  Never underestimate the capacity for self interest in the average pit bull owner, or the ability to simply ignore laws that were meant to regulate the exact behavior exhibited by that pit bull owner.

Hey Al... pit bulls are banned in Pawtucket, and leashes are required on all dogs.  THIS MEANS YOU! 

Pretty standard stuff.   

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Pit bull Roundup, Special Edition 9/4/2013

Warren Ohio

 An outrageous story from Warren Ohio.  On Monday September 2, 2013 a pit bull attacked a deaf 78 year old woman's Yorkshire Terrier.  Per WKBN27 " Reports say the pit bull belonged to a neighbor’s son and mauled the terrier at about 10:30 a.m. Monday in the 3000 block of Bon Air Street N.W., causing severe injuries. The terrier suffered crushed ribs and spine damage and was taken to a veterinarian, reports say."

Here is where the story goes into WTH territory.  This was the THIRD attack by the SAME pit bull on the SAME little dog!  How terrifying for an elderly, deaf woman to live next door to this and have no warning when it is coming.   The next door neighbor confirms that the pit bull has indeed attacked the Yorkie in the past. The next door neighbor asked Warren dog warden John Onatz to remove the dog from the home "due to its vicious nature."

Will someone please explain just how it is, in the land where breed specific advocacy was allowed to re-write state law to " finally give dog wardens the tools to deal with vicious dogs" that the same pit bull attacks the same tiny dog owned by an elderly deaf woman and the dog warden has to be ASKED to remove the damn dog?

warren police car

Monday, September 2, 2013

Pit bull roundup 9/2/2013

One might think that with the passage of HB 14 in February of 2012, the bill that was sold to foolish Ohio lawmakers as "finally giving dog wardens the tools to deal with dangerous dogs" that life in the Buckeye State would be a regular peaceful heaven on earth.  Not So much.  This post is a pit bull round up and looks to be a long one.  Get some coffee and get comfortable.  I make no attempt at chronological order, I'm just cleaning up the backlog.

A shooting at a Cincinnati area dog park made national news last spring.  Robert Marx, 74 years old shot a pit bull "mix" named Bruski to terminate an attack upon his own small dog.  It must be noted that Mr. Marx used a taser on Bruski prior to resorting to his legally owned and carried Ruger.

Bruski, owned by Kaitlyn Hornsby.

Eighteen year old pit bull owner Kaitlyn Hornsby and her boyfriend Silas Jay Parker, they claim that Bruski was only "playful" with the dog owned by Robert Marx.

Witnesses stated that attempts were made to separate Bruski from Mr. Marx's dog without success.  Ms. Hornsby was unable to protect the public from her dog but did not feel that Mr. Marx's actions to save his own dog were warranted.  Ms. Hornsby made conflicting statements on the shooting.  Early on she stated "'There were kids there and he pulled out a gun and shot. A kid could have been hurt. I could have been hurt. I was holding my dog as he shot him,' she said.

During Mr. Marx's trial she changed her story.  Her testimony is part of the video posted by  ""He was like - if you don't get your dog, I'm going to shoot him. And right then and there I stepped back. He pulled out a gun, I didn't want to get shot, I was scared for my life. And he said if you don't get your dog I'm going to shoot him, and he didn't give us a chance and immediately shot him." 

These are very different stories.

Robert Marx
Robert Marx

Mr. Marx case went to court recently and he was acquitted.  Please watch the video at the link given. Watch Mr. Marx move from the witness stand to the center of the courtroom to demonstrate his actions.  It is clear why he carried both a taser and a gun to protect himself and his dog.  Mr. Marx was arrested after Ms. Hornsby and Mr. Parker made their charges,  he went to jail,  he spent an extended period of time on house arrest, he lost his concealed carry permit, all due to bogus charges made by Hornsby and Parker.
Robert Marx, left, was acquitted Monday after shooting a dog in a dog park April 2.

“At the time I think your actions were justified. It's hard to second guess the outcome of a dog fight.” ~Judge Bouchard

It is expected that Mr. Marx will get his concealed carry permit back.

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From Shaker Heights Ohio
August 27, 2013

Ashley Debeljak, a college student walking her dog was attacked by two pit bulls.  The dogs were apparently JUST dropped off in the neighborhood and immediately attacked  the young woman and  Gary Simon,  a neighbor who intervened.

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Cleves Ohio

In a story posted August 26, 2013 Fox19 reports that three pit bulls were shot by police, one fatally.  This attack did not make local news at the time of the attack but surfaced a week later due to contact between the family of the pit bull owner and Fox 19.  The dog owners were looking for support but refused to speak with reporters.  The story is pretty outrageous.  Per reports, the three pit bulls were at large in the neighborhood and menacing neighbors.  A woman who was unable to leave her home due to the dogs menacing presence called the SPCA.  SPCA officers responded with police back up.  The SPCA  officer attempted to collar one of the pit bulls with a "control bar" which was attacked by the remaining two pit bulls. Hang on,  there is a lot of story to go here.  An elderly man approached and stated that he was the owner, without stating if he owned the dogs or the property.  SPCA officers report that they were threatened by the man.  I can't improve on this so I will just quote Fox19 " The man allegedly told the officer to leave and said several times he would "bust" the SPCA officer's head. After trying twice to control the dogs with a stick, according to paperwork, that man was then attacked by the dogs.
"At that point, the gentleman picked up a stick and started hitting the dogs or threatening the dogs, or whatever, and the dogs turned on him," Rutzlaff told FOX19.
SPCA officer John Sturgill said in his statement that that man then started screaming "save me" and "help me."
After screaming at the dogs to move along, Sturgill says they charged himself and a deputy, who opened fire. 

Screaming for law enforcement to shoot your own pit bull as it mauls the hand that feeds it is not uncommon. A change of heart after the fact is not uncommon either.  Here is a Facebook page set up to create sympathy for the maulers.  The family wants "justice" for their dogs.  Has there been any consideration of justice for the neighbors?  In statements to police, neighbors have complained that they are afraid to walk outside and one neighbor stated that "the dogs have charged me and my family several times."  Per the video report, the SPCA responded same address in July for a complaint that the same dogs were running loose.

For more information please click here.

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Dayton Ohio

On August 25, 2013 whioTV reported that a 14 year old boy was attacked by Thor, his family's pit bull.  Latoya Ross, mother of the boy,  was issued a court summons for failure to control her dogs.  Police officers were called to the scene by neighbors concerned about gunshots. Ms. Ross stated that her son took the dog outside but unfortunately fell on the dog which caused Thor to attack.  A neighbor fired shots into the air to distract the dogs from attacking the boy's face.  Ross's boyfriend, Trayette Thompkins lives at the home and shares ownership of the animals at the residence.  He was cited for having six unlicensed animals. Thompkins was also arrested on two active warrants for failure to appear in court.

Normal dogs know the difference between being tripped over and being kicked, but not Thor apparently.

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Norwalk Ohio

August 14, 2013. A man harboring a pit bull for someone who is incarcerated was not wise enough to just take his legal problems like a man.  He denied the charges but was found guilty of dog-at-large and paid far more in court costs that the ticket would have cost him.   Here is the short version of the story.  A woman was walking past Aaron Hyde's house when the pit bull charged her, attacked her, and knocked her down.  A neighborhood boy assisted her and chased the pit bull off.   She walked to a local business for help and police were called.  At the time of the attack Mr. Hyde was apologetic but in court he claimed that the victim came onto his property and got herself between two dogs that were "playing."  The state had two witnesses, Mr. Hyde represented himself and had no witnesses.  He admits that he did not see the attack. Mr. Hyde pleaded not guilty and stated that he did not think his dog was involved.  Per the Norwalk Reflector  "Given the evidence, that was the only verdict that the judge could find," Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Richard Woodruff, who was representing the state, said after the trial.
When asked for his reaction, Hyde called the verdict a "f***ing lie" and he also accused the media of lying, using more profanity."

Aaron Hyde in court.

 You can't make this stuff up.

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Dayton Ohio

On August 16, 2013 reported a complaint of a loose pit bull in a Dayton neighborhood turned into a police raid on a marijuana grow operation.  When police approached the residence where the pit bull was harbored they saw a woman "running around the house" and a man "grab a semi automatic firearm and slide a round into the chamber."  The man did leave the house without incident, telling police he left the gun on the couch.  Once inside the house, per " According to the report, when officers entered the living room to retrieve the gun they could smell and see marijuana along with a bag of suspected methamphetamine. They also observed a security system inside the home with numerous cameras.
While in the home officers discovered evidence of a marijuana grow operation including lights, thermometers, extension cords, water pumps and shower heads.
A total of 126.88 grams of marijuana and .69 grams of methamphetamine were confiscated from the home. Several boxes of shotgun shells and .45, .40 and .35-caliber ammunition were also confiscated."   Jessica Barrett was arrested on a warrant out of Kettering Ohio.  John Clayton Davis was also arrested, facing possible aggravated menacing, obstruction, possession of criminal tools, illegal manufacture of drugs, possession of drugs, advertising and possession charges.

Lets hope that the unrestrained pit bull that started all this is in the custody of Montgomery County dog warden Mark Kumpf.  Lets hope that Mark will consider the dog's previous employment as a guard dog for a drug operation prior to placing this dog with a family.

  Loose pit bull leads police to marijuana grow house photoLoose pit bull leads police to marijuana grow house photo
Jessica Barrett and John Clayton Davis

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Franklin County Ohio

On August 12th ABC6 reported a story that I was sure was actually the Norwalk Ohio attack posted above with an error in the name of the dog owner but apparently not.  In a major coincidence, a Franklin County judge issued an arrest warrant for David Hyde, owner of two pit bulls that are believed to have attacked two people this summer.  You can't make this stuff up.  On August 7th David Hyde failed to appear for his arraignment  on charges related to a June 3rd "biting incident."   On that very day Mr. Hyde's female pit bull attacked Marjorie Huffman in a 20 minute mauling that resulted in 86 stitches in Huffman's hands and feet. Ms. Huffman attempted to take refuge in her car but the dog made it impossible for her to shut the door.    A passing driver used her car to separate the pit bull from Huffman.  Police fired shots to drive the dog away.

David Hyde

Marjorie Huffman

Huffman's injuries

Hyde's dogs were taken by Franklin County Animal control but he hopes to get them back.  The Franklin county dog warden will pursue dangerous dog designations on these dogs.  I know the process is a mess but the safety of the public demands action.  Please note that Mr. Hyde has said he is sorry about the attack on Huffman and hopes her injuries are healing.  There is no record of Mr. Hyde paying Huffman's medical bills. "Sorry" is a cheap fix.

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Boardman Ohio

On July 12, 2013 reported that a Boardman woman complained that her dog was attacked by a pit bull while the woman's daughter was walking her pet on a leash.   The owner of the pit bull was fined $250 for failing to confine her dog.

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Sylvania Ohio

On July 5, 2013 Toledo News Now reported a pit bull attack in in the Metroparks.  Steve Thompson and Nicole Farrell stated that they were walking their one year old pit bull in a local park when their pit bull was attacked by what they believed was another pit bull that was running loose.  It was reported that two other dogs were with the attacking  pit bull but they did not take part in the attack. The couple said they were injured as they attempted to break up the fight and they drove themselves to a local hospital for treatment. The park was closed to visitors while park rangers, Sylvania Township police, and the  Lucas County Sheriffs Department searched the park. The Lucas County dog warden sent three patrols to assist in the search for the dogs, the dogs were not found.  A Metroparks spokesman stated ""We have never had an incident of this severity before. The track record here at Wildwood is... very safe,"

The Toledo Blade does not report on pit bull attacks but made an exception in this case because the victim was also a pit bull.  This story is no longer available online and there is a reason for that. Hang on, it gets more interesting.

Turns out that the attack in the park never happened.  Thompson and Farrell were attacked by Thompson's pit bull at their own apartment and concocted the story to explain their injuries in such a way that they might protect the dog (and avoid eviction from their apartment for harboring a violent dog).  Farrell faces charges for falsification.  She and Thompson should also be billed for the time wasted by law enforcement. Thompson has taken his pit bull and left the area.

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Oak Harbor Ohio

On August 6, 2013 the News Messenger reported that a law enforcement officer shot a pit bull in the face when the pit bull charged him while he was on a call regarding a custody dispute.  Two officers were speaking with a woman who was holding a child and standing in a doorway.  Two pit bulls pushed past the woman and charged the officers.  The lead dog was shot.  The officers secured both dogs.  The owner of the pit bulls was upset but calmed down when the situation was explained.  The injured pit bull was transported to a local animal hospital where it received treatment for injuries to the cheek and upper lip.  The dog responded well to the treatment.  The pit bull owner will be responsible for the veterinary hospital bill.  A spokesperson for the Sandusky County Humane Society had no concerns about the actions of the Sandusky County law enforcement officers “If they feel like they’re in danger of being attacked, then they have a right to protect themselves,” Askins said. “In this case, the dog did charge Captain Meggitt and he was fearful of being attacked.  “Given the situation, he did what he thought was necessary. I stand behind Captain Meggitt.”

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 Swanton Ohio

On 7/16/2013 the Toledo Blade reported that Swanton Ohio has considered their dog ordinances and will continue to consider pit bull inherently vicious.  Ohio breed specific advocate Jean Keating is not pleased.   A DNA test commissioned by the Toledo Blade on the dog at the heart of the current controversy lists the dog as a mix of American Bulldog, Rottweiler, American Staffordshire Terrier, Black and Tan Coonhound, Coton de Tulear, bull terrier, Neapolitan mastiff, and miniature pinscher.  This is an outrageously exotic mix of breeds.  How many Coton de Tulear dogs are roaming Toledo Ohio and spreading valuable DNA among the masses?    In the text of the article the Blade reporter identifies Bailey as Fila Brasileiro.  It is notable that in the photograph of the dog in question, found in the article, the dog is simply identified as a "pit bull"  and given the appearance of the dog, that seems appropriate.  The Blade continues to abuse the patience and intelligence of the public with bogus canine DNA testing, an imperfect test at best, at worst it is total fraud. For more information on the abuse of canine testing by the Toledo Blade please click here.

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Middletown Ohio

On June 30, 2013, per the Middletown Police Blotter, a resident reported her $350 pit bull was stolen from her porch.  "Responsible dog owners" do not leave their dogs on the porch,  subject to theft.  

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Mount Vernon Ohio   

On June 12, 2013 the Mount Vernon News reported a "street fight erupts after a three year old girl was bitten by a dog."   Per the News "Danny Geiger, grandfather of 3-year-old Rylenn Smith, said the girl was doing well and the surgeon at Children’s Hospital “did an excellent job.” She was taken to Children’s after an initial evaluation at Knox Community Hospital." "Geiger said the girl was taken to the building by her mother, Amanda Geiger, to see if a boy there her age could come over to play, and she was bitten as they walked past the dog."  "Geiger said he went to the Columbus Road address to talk with the dog owner. He left another person in his car while he went to talk with the dog owner and he became involved in a scuffle with three or four individuals.  Mount Vernon Police Capt. George Hartz was able to confirm the incident took place as police were called about 8:30 p.m. to provide support for a deputy at 101 Columbus Road, where a fight was reported taking place in the street. He said the officer in charge had not yet filed his report on the police role in the incident."

Rylenn Smith's injuries required 22 stitches to her face.

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Springfield Ohio  

On June 14, 2013 reported that a police officer was forced to shoot two pit bulls, one fatally, when they became vicious and charged the officer.  Here is the story " Around 9 a.m., a man was walking his dog when he said he felt threatened by three dogs at-large that became vicious in the 1200 block of Oakleef Drive. The responding officer called the dog warden, and while the dog warden was en route, the dogs allegedly charged the officer. The officer then discharged his firearm"   hitting two of the three pit bulls.  All of the dogs were pit bulls or pit mixes.

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Middletown Ohio

On June 12, 2013 Fox 19 reported that a Middletown man was arrested after firing shots at a pit bull attacking his dog.  No one was injured during the incident.

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Springfield Ohio

On June 14, 2013 reported that police shot two pit bulls.  A caller reported that someone was being chased by dogs, police responded, the dogs became aggressive.  Police fatally shot two of the three pit bulls, the remaining pit bull was taken to the local humane society.  No further information was available. 

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Cincinnatti Ohio

Per, Roger Brown, described as a repeat offender and dog fighter will be back in court facing seven counts of dog fighting.  Nobody has ever been charged with fighting Yorkies or Chihuahuas, pit bulls is a given.  

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Reynoldsburg Ohio  

On July 10, 2013 the Reynoldsburg News reported that two Reynoldsburg residents wanted the city to reconsider the community's pit bull ban.  Lori Schwartzkopf and Brad Hauser came to the city council armed with the standard talking points.  The chairman of the Safety Committee was not impressed and stated ""As chairman of the safety committee, I'm not going to put it on the committee, Her claim was that legislation would be able to let us control people's actions with dangerous dogs, but that is not something we could enforce.  That is paramount to saying speed limits negate speeding. Legislation would not solve any possibility of someone being hurt by a dangerous dog." He conceded that other breeds could also be dangerous.  "But I don't remember reading any news stories about people being mauled or killed by a Chihuahua,"   

Good man, logical thought, appropriate consideration for the safety of constituents.  Thank you sir!

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North Ridgeville Ohio

Rescue 911 Bully Breed rescue is looking for volunteers.  An organizational and informational meeting was held at a local Panera Bread location.  Given the location, potential volunteers were probably encouraged to leave their own pit bulls at home.  Here is a hint for Rescue 911 - focus on preventing the horrendous numbers of pit bulls entering America's shelters.  There are far too many pit bulls to rescue.  There are simply not enough proper homes for these dogs and they sure do not deserve to suffer.  Promote neuter and spay.  Breed specific advocates fight mandatory neuter and spay like it is a personal insult.  Anyone with any real affection for the breed would be demanding mandatory neuter and spay laws.

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Cleveland Ohio  

On June 19, 2013 Newsnet5 reported a near-miss attack on 85 year old Ken Hall.  Mr. Hall was hitting golf balls at Keurrish Park when a pit bull escaped the yard of its owner and menaced Hall for a full 15 minutes. Hall used his nine iron to keep the dog at bay while he worked his way to a chain link fence, he called 911 and a supervisor at a nearby swimming pool rescued him in her car.  Police arrived and took the pit bull to the Cleveland Kennel.  Inexplicably, the dog was returned to owner who claimed that pit bull Polo "is a good, harmless dog."  Polo's owner declined to be identified but he did show Polo off to a reporter, the dog was wandering around the owner's unfenced front yard without benefit of leash or muzzle.  Mr. Hall "encourages others to protect themselves in a city park after the pit bull tried to attack the Cleveland resident Sunday."  Given the lack of responsibility by Polo's owner and lack of charges by the City of Cleveland dog warden, park patrons would be wise to carry a nine iron at all times.  

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Dayton Ohio   

On June 10, 2013 reported that a five year old boy was bitten by an unlicensed pit bull.  Per the Dayton police report, the child was standing outside a fenced in yard when another child opened the gate and the pit bull ran out and bit him.  The child required treatment at Dayton Children's Hospital.  

 I can't improve on this so I quote the article "Police talked to the dog’s owner who said the dog has never been to the vet, has no tags, license or collar. He couldn’t get the dog to stop being aggressive long enough to show the dog to police officers, according to the report.  The owner was issued a misdemeanor citation and the dog was placed on a quarantine."

Taking the first opportunity to run out of the yard and attack a five year old child, never been to a vet, no vaccinations, no license, no collar, the owner can't get the dog to stop being aggressive long enough to show it to the police and a MISDEMEANOR CITATION is issued????   This dog and this dog owner should have been charged to the limit of Ohio law.  Mark Kumpf  you are county dog warden and you are responsible for this. 
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    Toledo Ohio

    Angi Holt-Parks adopted a deaf pit bull named Rudi from the Lucas County dog warden.  She and her husband Don are learning sign language and teaching it to the dog so they can communicate with Rudi. Per the Toldeo Blade " Although she’s never worked with a special-needs dog before, Ms. Holt-Parks said she’s owned several dogs with medical issues.  The biggest challenge thus far is keeping her attention during training because she does get distracted easily because she is young and still wants to play." Per the Sandusky Register "John Brown, Lucas County dog warden behavior technician, has worked with Holt-Parks on ways she can communicate with Rudi, who was called "Charm" at the pound.

    He suggested a vibrating collar, which is a training collar that allows a person to press a button on a remote-control device, which then sends a signal to the collar, causing it to vibrate. The vibration is not a shock, and it is not very strong, Brown said. Many people who have used the collars first worried that they wouldn't work because the dog didn't seem to notice, he said. But with conditioning and training, the dog will respond to the vibration."

    A deaf pit bull with a short attention span.  The breed is well known for being unable to terminate an attack in progress.  Able bodied bystanders have used guns, knives, bricks, bats, boards, rocks, hot coffee, electric hedge trimmers, what have you, in failed attempts to terminate an attack.  This pit bull is deaf, if it does not happen to be looking at Ms. Holt-Parks, or is ignoring her, what kind of safety can be offered to members of the community.  What could go wrong here?  The mind boggles.  

    Angie Holt-Parks and Rudi, photo from the Sandusky Register

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    Toledo again

    On June 15, 2013 the Toledo Blade reported that Best Friends Animal Society has given $6000 in grants to Jean Keating's Lucas County Pit Crew to fund a rabies clinic, breed specific "playgroups," and training to increase the adoptability of pit bull dogs.  Humane Ohio received a grant of $3000 for a rabies clinic as well. How will the Lucas County Pit Crew and Humane Ohio determine which dogs will qualify for free shots and "playgroups" if nobody can identify a pit bull? 

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    I hope I have not missed many Ohio pit bull attacks in this edition of the Pit Bull Roundup but I have just about had it so I will close with this article from the Columbus Dispatch with similar versions appearing  in many Ohio news services.  The Dispatch  title is Pit Bulls Clog Shelters and it deals with unintended consequences.  Requirements for insurance and confinement for pit bulls were dropped when HB 14 was passed in the Ohio Legislature.  There is no longer any disincentive to breeding pit bulls and Ohio shelters are full of them.  
    "Fourteen months after a new Ohio law removed the vicious label from pit bulls, the dogs remain a hard sell for shelters trying to find strays a home. At the Franklin County Dog Shelter, pit bulls and pit-bull mixes take three times as long as other dogs to adopt out, director Joe Rock said.  "On average, pit bulls are on the adoption floor for 28 days, while other dogs are there for nine, Rock said.
    "The Delaware and Fairfield county dog shelters don’t even put pit bulls on the adoption floor. After the dogs come in as strays, they evaluate them to make sure they’re adoptable and then transfer them to local humane societies and rescue groups that have space and can find homes for them.'s article "Pit bulls again legal to own - and cast off to the pound"  deals with the aftermath of the change to local law banning pit bulls.  "It has been nearly 15 months since Cincinnati repealed its ban on pit bulls, deciding no longer to label the dogs as vicious by definition. So people can own pits – and they can also get rid of them.
    A walk through the kennels at the SPCA’s Cincinnati facilities in Northside and Sharonville is a walk past pen after pen of pit bulls with their short hair, muscular bodies, powerful jaws and expressive eyes.
    At the end of July, at the Sharonville facility, SPCA President and CEO Harold Dates identified 62 of the 90 available animals as appearing to be possibly pit bulls or pit bull mix. The results were similar in the SPCA facility in Northside on a recent visit, when 41 of the 48 dogs up for adoption appeared to be pit bull breeds, which have a fairly distinct look."
    Given the number of pit bull attacks and the rapidly increasing numbers of pit bulls entering Ohio shelters with very little chance of placement in a suitable home it is glaringly apparent that HB14 is an epic fail.  What has been gained from selling out the safety of the public to a well funded special interest group?  More pit bulls are born to suffer, and more humans suffer life changing, or life ending pit bull attacks. This is obscene.