20 thoughts on “Open Thread

    1. The shelter completely missed the lesson to be learned from Andrea’s survival. Instead of “we need a better way to kill the animals so that they actually die the first time we try”, the lesson should have been “if we publicize our pets, they get adopted.” Leave it to a typical “shelter” to get it wrong.

  1. URGENT – Final Vote Mon. 1/9 on Shelby County, TN Law that Outlaws Dogs in Vehicles Under Certain Circumstances


    January 6, 2012

    The Shelby County, Tennessee Commission will hold a third and final
    vote on proposed changes to the county animal control ordinance on
    January 9, 2012 at 1:30 p.m. The proposed ordinance includes a
    provision that would make it a violation to leave a companion animal
    unattended in a vehicle for more than one hour when the outside
    temperature is above 70 degrees or below 35 degrees. It is
    appreciated that the commission included an exception to this
    provision for animals participating in dog shows, sporting events, or
    trials, but this exception does not extend to pets that are safely
    secured in vehicles for more than one hour during family outings,
    travel, overnight stays, training classes, or other events.

    As written, the temperature and time requirements in this provision
    would potentially criminalize:

    – Local pet owners who include their pets in family activities and
    who, for any reason, leave their pets safely and comfortably within
    their vehicles for 61 minutes or more.

    – Travelers with pets who safely secure their pets in their vehicles
    while visiting Shelby County restaurants, shopping, hotels, and other

    – Visitors in motorhomes with pets who utilize the numerous RV
    facilities in Shelby County.

    These arbitrary temperature and time restrictions are unwarranted and
    ineffective for several reasons. A dog negligently left in an enclosed
    vehicle in direct sunlight on a hot day can suffer injury or death in
    far less than 60 minutes. However, there are countless circumstances
    under which a well-cared for pet may be responsibly left in a vehicle
    for more than one hour when the temperature is above or below the
    extremes stated in the proposed ordinance.

    It should also be noted that existing Tennessee state law
    (39-14-202(d)) allows seizure of the vehicle and its contents when a
    person is taken into custody for transporting or confining an animal
    in a cruel manner. Tennessee state law (39-14-210(a)) empowers the
    president of any society for the prevention of cruelty to animals that
    is incorporated in the county to appoint agents to make arrests for
    offenses involving non-livestock animals in that county. It unclear
    how these state laws would apply to violations of the time and
    temperature provisions in the proposed Shelby County ordinance. Click
    here for the State Attorney General’s opinion on these issues under
    state code.

    The American Kennel Club supports fair and reasonable laws that
    protect animals. We are concerned, however, that this ordinance may
    unreasonably impact responsible owners who temporarily secure a dog in
    an adequately shaded and ventilated vehicle during hot weather.
    Further, the proposed ordinance provides no exceptions for pets kept
    inside temperature-controlled vehicles such as motorhomes.
    Additionally, a dog inside a vehicle is well protected from wind and
    winter precipitation. The ordinance does not consider steps an owner
    may take to provide warm bedding or a pet sweater (if needed) for a
    dog secured in a vehicle while the owner shops, enjoys a meal in a
    restaurant, or while travelling during cold weather.

    How you can help:

    Concerned citizens of Shelby County are encouraged to immediately
    contact county commissioners to politely request that the ordinance be
    amended prior to the final vote to delete the time and temperature
    restrictions. Non-residents may wish to state that the time and
    temperature restrictions, if enacted, will cause them to bypass Shelby
    County when travelling with their pets.

    The contact number for county commissioners is (901) 222-1000. Email
    addresses are listed below.

    Pet owners are also encouraged to attend the county commission meeting
    and express their concerns. Call the commission office at (901)
    222-1000 for information about submitting a Request to Speak Card.

    Meeting Information:
    Date: Monday, January 9, 2012
    Time: 1:30 p.m.
    Place: Vasco A. Smith, Jr. County Administration Building, 160 N. Main
    Street, Memphis, TN 38103

    Shelby County Commissioners:
    Phone (901) 222-1000

    Sidney Chism, Chairman

    Wyatt Bunker, Chairman Pro Tem

    Steve Mulroy, Commissioner (ordinance sponsor)

    Walter Bailey, Jr., Commissioner

    Henri E. Brooks, Commissioner

    Melvin Burgess, Commissioner

    Justin Ford, Commissioner

    James Harvey, Sr., Commissioner

    Mike Ritz, Commissioner

    Terry Roland, Commissioner

    Heidi Shafer, Commissioner

    Brent Taylor, Commissioner

    Chris Thomas, Commissioner

    For questions or more information, please contact AKC Government
    Relations at (919) 816-3720 or doglaw@akc.org

    1. Donna —

      It was <35 today at SAR training. All of the SAR dogs waited in their respective vehicles for their various turns to work and play, for more than an hour each. That's how it goes at unit training. If there is a SAR unit with dogs that operates in Shelby County, those opposing this lame-brained proposal need to get them involved.

  2. Shirley – thanks for the info regarding Dr. Julie Levy above – I passed the time, etc forward to the local community cat helpers – they plan to have a webcast party.

  3. I came across this on Facebook and couldn’t resist sharing it here.

    Yesterday I was at my local Wal-Mart buying a large bag of Purina dog chow for my loyal pet Boomer, the Wonder Dog and was in the check-out line when the woman behind me asked if I had a dog.
    What did she think I had an elephant? So because I’m retired and have little to do, on impulse I told her that no, I didn’t have a dog, I was starting the Purina diet… again. I added that I probably shouldn…’t, because I ended up in the hospital last time, but that I’d lost 50 pounds before I awakened in an intensive care ward with tubes coming out of most of my orifices and IVs in both arms.
    I told her that it was essentially a perfect diet and that the way that it works is, to load your pants pockets with Purina nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The food is nutritionally complete, so it works well and I was going to try it again. (I have to mention here that practically everyone in the line was now enthralled with my story).
    Horrified, she asked if I ended up in intensive care because the dog food poisoned me. I told her no, I stepped off a curb to sniff a poodle’s ass and a car hit me.
    I thought the guy behind her was going to have a heart attack he was laughing so hard.
    Wal-Mart won’t let me shop there anymore. Better watch what you ask retired people. They have all the time in the world to think of crazy things to say

    1. Dot you are the second person this week that has made me laugh so hard while drinking my coffee that I have spewed it all over my PC & desk! I don’t care if you are retired or not…that was GOOD!

      1. you’re welcome! i find it very powerful and moving (i once spent a day reading it from beginning to end when i first discovered it), and thought i should share :-)

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