The 2012 annual Stray Dogs Survey released today by Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, reveals a shocking 118,932 stray and abandoned dogs were picked up by Local Authorities across the UK over the last 12 months, equating to a staggering 325 stray dogs being found every day.
Bear in mind these statistics do not include owner surrenders to rescues, dogs being killed at vet on behest of their owners etc. So here we are 325 stray dogs A DAY in the UK.
That is a BIG problem and many of these dogs will never find a home again and are being put down in the pounds and many rescues. And what do we in Ireland do..?
We compound the problem by shipping more and more dogs over to the UK, because apparently the UK is the land of milk and honey when it comes to dog ownership. Excuse me but what a load of BS!
The UK like any other country has its fair share of animal cruelty and neglect. And now we have it black on white: a massive surplus of dogs.
MANY Irish rescues do not even try to rehome in Ireland, they just ship what they have over to the UK, problem solved. Or is it?
It creates a false positive for the pound figures here in Ireland and the Irish Government will never change legislation as long there is no lobby. Same old same old… I have actually seen posts on Facebook by so-called RESCUES asking their supporter to search the free ads websites to find puppies to send over to the UK!
I have looked at several of the UK rescues taking in Irish dog galore. None of them have charity status, 90% do not have premises which means Irish dogs are placed straight into foster homes. Is it a wonder then when one reads about recent Parvo outbreaks in certain parts of the UK?
Conveyor-belt rescues in Ireland even go a step further and send dogs to Italy. Italy who has stray dog figures in the region of HALF A MILLION.
These *rescues^ are taking the easy way out, not for the dogs though… SHAME.
Dogs are shipped in totally unsuitable cattle trucks for example and no one seems to think that is cruel. But why, we are saving lives. So Irish dogs are leaving Irish shores in their hundreds every week. You cannot tell me that each of these dogs finds a home, or that it is properly vaccinated, spayed or neutered. Money talks… Some UK rescues have their own transporter going and are taking directly from Irish pounds with 4 or 5 dogs sitting in ONE crate the whole way back to the UK.
Some animal lovers they are… I am disgusted.
Today we take a closer look at a dog behaviourist ( more and more seem to spring up like mushrooms and far from knowing what they are doing are actually killing dogs due to their inadequate knowledge about dog behaviour and training). Most did an online course, simple as that. Ca-ching!!
One in particular is desperately trying to make the news at present, perhaps due to failing TV audiences?
If you have a dog with behavioural problems I suggest you do not contact her. Let’s quote the Terrier Man himself:
** If there is anything more perverse than Victoria Stilwell injecting herself into the last days of Lennox’s life, I do not know what it is. Stilwell, who put herself out there as a dog trainer before she even owned a dog, has proven that she cannot work with a biter, even when that dog is nothing more than a Cocker Spaniel. See the video below for confirmation on that point. **
Quite interesting, don’t you think? And also quite revealing as to the motives behind the support she is professing to give. Support for whom? Her own ends, me thinks.
What I am missing here is an outcry about the thousands of Bull Breeds dying in Pounds across the world, the ruthless breeders, the idiots who buy the dogs as status symbol, the list is endless. Ms Stilwell is silent on those and always has been. But then again, she can’t handle a Cocker so how on Earth could she handle a Bull Breed with behavioural problems?
Simple, she can’t.
Hindsight is always 20/20 but none are so blind as those who will not see.
So if you happen to be an owner of a dog with a problem, do your homework, shop around, ask other dog owners. And often the problem can be solved with a simple solution: common sense.
Where art thou, keyboard warrior?
Where are you when all these dogs died and still do, every day of every week of every months of every year?
The pounds in Ireland, the UK and US are full to the brim with Bull Breeds but YOU are nowhere to be seen?
No sign of you.
No, you sit safely in your house behind a keyboard and it gives you great pleasure to attack those who actually DO something, those who rescue dogs from the Pound, those who open their hearts and HOMES to them.
Whilst you profess to be anti BSL, all you do is being on Facebook or Twitter all day long, sharing libel, threats and half-truths about those who actually save lives.
Happy with yourself, yes?
Take a long hard look at the picture above, if your dog is ever in the pound or in need of rescue, WE will still be there and help, regardless of how you treated us because we are in it for the dogs – ALL the way, not just when it suits us.
Bruce was seized in Northern Ireland as a type dog, after 2 years and 10 months of legal battles the Court ruled in EGAR’s favour and we were allowed to drive to Northern Ireland to collect him in Bangor on the 29th of July 2010.
Belfast City Council seized Bruce and dogwarden Sandie Lightfoot was in charge of Bruce and abused him.
North Down Borough Council seized Bruce and dogwarden Sandie Lightfoot never even saw Bruce nor was she in any way connected with him.
Our solicitor was Alison Douglas. She was committed and no nonsense. She cried with us when the judge ruled in our favour and was professional throughout the whole legal ordeal. She also helped with the last legal bill! She knows how wrong BSL is and went way beyond her call of duty to help Bruce.
Alison was the first solicitor Lennox’ owners had and she stepped down as their legal counsel only a few short months into the case. She was vilified by the owners and their followers and countless stories were made up. People forget or do not know that a solicitor can’t just step down from a case, they have to state their case as to why to a judge and obviously it was good enough for the Judge to grant it.
Since Alison was our legal rock for Bruce so why did she pack in the case? She must have had a very very good reason for stepping down and I am sure she will eventually answer the question when put to her.
Anyone who asked Lennox’ owner was told she hates dogs and is pro BSL – this we KNOW to be untrue, given -our experience with her and the way she handled Bruce’s case.
Could it be that the very first assessor of Lennox for the defense stated that Lennox was aggressive? Why did the assessment of Lennox by Madeleine Forsythe never presented to the Courts? Could it be that Alison realised she had been lied to by the very people whom she represented?
YES, many of you have never heard of Madeleine Forsythe, have you? Lennox’ owners kept that one VERY quiet, aye?
There are two major differences between the Bruce and Lennox cases:
– Bruce was found to be of sound temperament and non-aggressive towards humans
– Bruce’s owner cooperated with the Courts and us.
– Lennox was found to be of unsound temperament and aggressive towards humans
– Lennox’ owners did not cooperate and decided instead to wage a hate and intimidation campaign
Bruce will be celebrating his 2nd anniversary of freedom on the 29th of July. Lies about his death here at our hands are ludicrous and it is easy to see why someone would try to blacken our name, since they had to give a reason as to why they did not accept the lifeline we threw to their dog.
Bruce is very much alive, loved and well looked after, he lives in the house with us and our animals, not locked in a dirty kennels as some would like you to believe. Many people have come and met Bruce here. .
And another few facts which can be easily found on the internet:
We never asked for donations to help with Bruce’s case, as a matter of fact very few people knew we were involved until the final ruling on the 1. June 2010.
We never received ANY payment for the two newspaper articles written about Bruce, one by a local paper and one by a national newspaper, the author of BOTH articles is Darragh McDonagh who can verify this fact.
PLEASE READ ALL including the links. If the links do not work then copy and paste into address bar.
On the 25th of May 2010 we received an email from the owner of Lennox who had been seized in Northern Ireland.
Direct quotes:**He is kept in a secure back garden which is completely surrounded by 8 foot high brick walls and you can only see him through a 6 foot high iron gate which has a tamper proof pad lock on it at the bottom of my driveway and as I live in a court he and my other dogs have no access to the general public.**
**My partner advised he didn’t know where the dog’s collar, lead and muzzle was for them to examine him as he is fearful of strangers and suffers from hair loss due to stress as diagnosed by our vet and dog trainer recommended by our vet.**
Based on this we advised strongly to petition the Courts to have Lennox removed from NI jurisdiction as it was clear to see that the dog was at risk due to behavioural problems. Our offer to take him was not accepted and the owner proceeded with the Courts.
A few weeks passed and plenty of people contacted EGAR asking why we would not help Lennox. So I personally went onto the Lennox FB page and offered help again and also offered to meet the owner when I collected Bruce from NI (Bangor) to discuss the case and do a breed ID and temperament assessment. I heard nothing back, which was fine as I have plenty of other cases to look after. However, next time I went onto the Lennox FB page, he had become a therapy dog to the daughter who suffers from asthma, had developed hair loss due to neglect at the hands of the BCC and the first solicitor had dropped the case and was being vilified. This solicitor is the very same solicitor who defended Bruce and was absolutely brilliant, she even put some of her OWN money towards the last appeal and was near tears when she rang to let me know we had won and that Bruce was coming to live at EGAR! So I asked questions:
HOW did a yard dog all of a sudden become a *therapy* dog?WHY had the solicitor dropped the case? WHY the need for donations when the whole case was funded by Free Legal Aid? WHY did the vet, who allegedly treated Lennox for hair loss, not testify, neither did the dog trainer they allegedly had? WHY did none of the neighbours testify on Lennox’s behaviour?WHY did the owner now say that her daughter was traumatised when the dog warden ripped the dog from her arms when she stated clearly in her email to EGAR that her daughter was in school?
Next thing I know all hell broke loose and I then got accused of having killed Bruce, offering to steal dogs from a *compound* in Northern Ireland, was living under an assumed name in Ireland as I was wanted for cruelty in the UK, amongst other, equally unsavoury things. At this stage, I was speechless. And then a pattern emerged, ANYONE who asked uncomfortable questions was vilified and hounded. And even those who had nothing to do with it were attacked:
And it got so bad that the Attorney General is now investigating:
Firstly, it was the initial solicitor who was threatened, so much so that she had to take legal advice on the matter for herself, then Yolanda Elwood (see link above) and next in line for abuse was Sandie Lightfood, the then acting dog warden. Ms Lightfoot testified in Court:
**The dog wardens attended on 19 May 2010. One of the wardens, Ms Lightfoot, attempted to examine the dog in the kitchen. The dog was very agitated, barking and growling. The dog lunged at her head and hit her with his muzzle. She was unable to carry out the examination because the dog was repeatedly lunging at her. The applicant finally agreed that the dog wardens could take the dog and she placed the dog in the Council van.**
It took her months to gain Lennox’s trust and she was the one who handled the dog when the assessments were carried out. This was used against her in the following hate campaign against her person. Absolutely ludicrous.
Their own defence expert said in Court: ** On the other hand Mr David Ryan, on behalf of the applicant, in a report dated 16 March 2011 recorded that when he reached over the dog’s head to clip a line to the back of his collar in one movement the dog lunged towards him, growled, barked and snapped. **
Despite having told me in her email:
(Direct quote from email)** I confirmed I had seen both of his parents when I got him as an 8 week old pup, his mum was a Pedigree American Bull Dog and his Father was a cross between a Pedigree Staffordshire Bull Terrier and a Pedigree Black Labrador which they also still owned**
The owner admitted in Court: **The applicant accepted that the dog was of the type known as a Pit Bull Terrier and that she was guilty of the offence of being the keeper of such a dog within Article 25A of the 1983 Order as amended. **
Also:**The judgment of 3 September 2011 referred to the circumstances in which the dog was removed from the applicant’s family by the Council. The judge noted that the dog had been in kennels for 17 months and that Ms Lightfoot was the main carer. Her conclusion was that the dog was “one of the most aggressive and unpredictable dogs she had ever met.” The dog was on medication for depression which had mellowed it. Her conclusion was that it would not be possible to correct the dog’s faults and he remained a danger to the public and anyone around him. Two other dog wardens gave similar evidence. The applicant stated in evidence that she did not know the dog was a Pit Bull Terrier until she was told by the dog wardens. She conceded that the dog had changed since an incident where she and her child were threatened by a group of youths. She said the dog gave no problems in the house. She admitted that the dog did not deal well with strangers who forced themselves upon him. The dog had been neutered and micro chipped and was covered by third party insurance. She also gave evidence that she was willing to muzzle the dog and at present the dog was muzzled “to warn people”.**
• WHY was the petition signed by so many thousands never even presented to the Courts?
• WHY neither, was any petition made to remove Lennox from the jurisdiction despite plenty of offers from various countries/organisations, not just EGAR.
• And WHY the constant need for donations, when the whole case was funded by the taxpayer via Free Legal Aid?
• WHY are there no pictures of Lennox in the house as an adult (apart from a badly photo shopped one)?
• WHY did Craig Winters aka John Winters aka Micheal Hunter threaten another well known anti BSL organisation with terrorist organisations and spammed the EGAR wall with vile threats and ridiculous allegations?
• WHY did the owner never sent any treats or bedding to Lennox? EVER..?
• WHY did they not ring the dog warden to enquire about their dog?
• And WHY did he say in Court: *Ms Barnes’ partner told the dog wardens that the dog would “rip your head off” if approached**
I leave it to you to find the answers in the above links and basic human nature.
PS. NONE of us were against Lennox to suggest otherwise is ludicrous, we are, however, anti lies and deception. And to those who direct their energy towards threats, violence and untruths: there are countless dogs like Lennox in the Pound, if you want to do something CONSTRUCTIVE then we strongly suggest you help them and lobby the government in the UK to abolish BSL.