The city of Sarnia has issued a press release saying that the three dogs from my earlier story are going to be released to their owners. Great news!
Congratulations to the city of Sarnia for listening to two experts.
Having said that, I am personally appalled that three owners of three different dogs had to be put through this ordeal and that they (I’m sure) had to pay significant costs out-of-pocket for legal advice.
I understand the concept of people being charged with offences, having to pay lawyers to defend them, and ultimately being found innocent, but this entire situation was unnecessary and completely avoidable.
It would be nice if, in the future, Sarnia would just leave well enough alone and stick to bite incidents. It would be easier on everyone. Really.
Here’s the text of the city of Sarnia’s press release:
City of Sarnia
DATE: September 21, 2009
RELEASE DATE: Immediate
FROM: Lloyd Fennell, City Manager
SUBJECT: Release of Dogs
The City of Sarnia is arranging for the release of the three mixed-breed dogs that were detained on the basis of having similar characteristics to a “Pit Bull” as outlined by the Dog Owners Liability Act (DOLA).
Following the detentions, the dogs Capone, Maddie and Carter were examined by an expert of the owners choice and one of the City’s choice.
Both examinations found that the dogs were not “Pit Bulls” nor do they have the appearance or physical characteristics of the “Pit Bull” breed.
While the dogs were detained, extensions were given to the euthanasia of the dogs to allow for the examinations.
The City wanted to get the necessary information to ensure the right decision was made and that is now the case.
Following discussions with the owners’ lawyer, the dogs will be released to their owners subject to them being spayed and neutered in accordance with the recommendations of the owners’ expert.
The city is satisfied that the release of the dogs back to their owners is the right decision and will work with the owners to ensure that the recommendations are followed in the release.