November 10, 2003

Authentic Dog*

I think it's risky business when people own dogs they don't license.

Dog licenses are necessary for several reasons, not the least of which is that to get a license, your dog has to be vacinated against rabies, and this practice reduces the incidence of rabies and the associated health problems the disease poses to other animals and to humans. Many wild animals can carry rabies, and leaving a pet--especially a large dog that roams--unvaccinated and unregistered is simply irresponsible.

It is with some hesitation that I point to Frank Paynter's dog, Fang, as an example of an accident waiting to happen.

Fang remains unlicensed and has not been vaccinated. At the same time, Frank has posted about how prone Fang is to roaming, and about how unpredictable Fang can become on occasion.

What if Fang were to happen upon a child collecting pine cones in the woods? What if Fang, having recently killed a rabid raccoon, bit the child? That child would then have to undergo a round of very painful treatments, and just as devastating for Frank, Fang would have to be destroyed.

That is why I am urging Frank to have Fang vaccinated and to get him properly licensed in his township. I also urge the Towns and Counties across the U.S. to do a better job enforcing the laws that are already on the books. They should be following through and fining the scofflaws who refuse to license their dogs.

I'm sorry, Frank, but sometimes an intervention is required.


Dedicated to shelley.