Sunday, February 28, 2010

What an ending!!!!

I couldn't be more proud of our Canadian Olympic athletes and this great country of ours!

Canada, WE ROCK!

World record with 14 gold medals and sweet hockey gold in a thrilling game that had everyone on the edge of their seat!

Cheers to us.

Sidney Crosby after scoring the winning goal. 
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images.

Donations are being graciously accepted to help families save Brampton dogs

 Thanks again to Brampton Guardian for getting this much needed information out to the public!

Dog Defence fund set up
A fund has been set up to help pay the legal fees of the Brampton families trying to free their dogs from the city pound.
Brittany and Rambo have been held by the City of Brampton since being seized from their homes Jan. 13. Brittany is owned by Rui Branco’s family and he hired a lawyer last month who will take the case to court. Branco is trying to prove to the city that the dogs are boxer/American bulldog mixes. The city has labelled them “pitbulls”, which were banned by provincial legislation four years ago.

Donations can be made at, or at any branch of the TD Bank, transit number 02622, account number 78766538796.

Meanwhile, supporters who have been trying to draw city politicians into the controversy have now reached out to Mississauga city councillors for help. They say Brampton councillors can learn something about compassion and doing the right thing from their colleagues to the south.
That’s because two years ago, Mississauga animal control officers impounded a dog that had escaped from its home and was reported running loose. His name was Rambo, too, he was labelled a pitbull and his owner was also denied visits to see him.
But Mississauga councillors intervened, saying it was only right to allow his owner to visit him. They unanimously passed a motion directing city staff to allow her to visit.
Now, supporters of Brittany and Rambo are trying to let Brampton councillors know that, despite a city staff warning that they can’t interfere in a legal matter, they can do something— allow the dogs’ families to visit.
“City-owned pounds should be showing people how to treat dogs by example,” Mississauga Councillor Carolyn Parrish said at the time of the Mississauga issue. “It’s not going to be thousands of people. We only have one incarcerated dog right now.”
Visits were prohibited at the Mississauga pound, but councillors changed that policy so exceptions could be made.
Mississauga Councillor George Carlson called allowing the visit “a measure of our humanity”.

Rambo in better times...

Protest for Calleigh a success!

I see the "thugs" showed up en-mass for another protest for another persecuted dog owner and their innocent dog in Kingston. In the video I see a sea of grandmothers, middle aged women and men, young people, parents with children, and dog owners with all breeds coming out to support this protest against the most draconian, barbaric law ever legislated in the province of Ontario!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Kingston rally for Calleigh, another innocent victim

I am going to personally make a comment as someone who has been fighting in the front lines of this fight for the past 5+ years before I give you the details on the rally for Calleigh.

There are not hundreds of dogs that have been threatened by this barbaric, draconian law, BUT rather thousands of dogs that have been slaughtered, including puppies based on not behavior but how they look! The figure from the OVMA as of last spring was 4000 dogs killed in Ontario labeled as "pitbulls". That number continues to rise as I type this post.

Thousands of dog owners in this province have had their dogs ripped away and been intimidated into handing over their dog/s. Some are shipped out of province because the municipality doesn't have the "guts" to push the plunger on the blue juice therefore they send the dog out of province. If they are so g/d dangerous, then why would you send them to other provinces? Do you dislike other provinces that much?? It makes ZERO sense!

There are hundreds of cases currently in court all over the province. It is rare to see any media coverage of these cases. It is awesome to see the Brampton case and now Kingston getting some "real" coverage. Mississauga has and had a couple cases that were higher profile and several in Scarborough and Toronto but hundreds of owners suffer in silence. Nobody helps them or speaks for them. Many of them find us (DLCC) and we do everything we possibly can to help with information, education and pointing in the right direction for legal help etc. Many of these dog owners don't have the financial resources to hire a lawyer, therefore they are forced to abandon their dog.

Every dog owner in this province is at risk. Many still sit in a state of denial and complacency because they don't think their dog "looks" like a "pitbull" but under this draconian law, ANY dog can be identified as a "pitbull" because it has nothing to do with breed and everything to do with looks and who is making the identification. It becomes your word against theirs and with the reverse onus portion of the law, it becomes impossible for you to prove what your dog "isn't".

Dog owners in this province were thrown under the bus by Dalton McGuinty and Michael Bryant! They wanted a law in place that contained warrantless entry, reverse onus, warrantless search and seizure and restrictions on mobility. They wanted a way into your home when and if they feel like it with nothing you can do about it! All the authorities need to have is suspicion you may have a "pitbull" and that gives them warrantless entry into your home to have a look around. The McGuinty Liberals chose dog owners to throw under the bus because they knew everyone would be so mired down in the red herring of the notorious "pitbull" that few would notice while they used the law for other agendas. They knew there were so few of us that owned the purebreds (only 30 American Staffordshire Terriers in the whole province! Less than 1500 dogs total all 3 breeds combined). How much noise can they make? Not like banning labs or shepherds.. quite a few more of them being 2 of the most popular types of dogs.. would be quite a stink.

Segregation and discrimination. Now good and innocent dogs and owners are paying the ultimate price. Death and heartbreak.

Some municipalities picked up the ball and ran with it. Many have also refused to enforce the law and they come out publicly and say it as well. One of those municipalities is Ottawa, yes that is right. McGuinty's home riding! Others take it to the en'th degree like Sarnia, Brampton, Mississauga, Barrie, now Kingston to name a few.. Windsor, Kitchener both had bans previously to the inclusion in DOLA. Municipalities that would rather keep banning things that may cause them a problem rather than deal with the problem at hand and incorporate a system that is fair and workable and deals with people who cause a problem to public safety.

Please show your support and stand up for what is right. We must take a stand as Ontario citizens and make right what the McGuinty Liberals have made so very WRONG! Please attend a rally, write your MPP, write/fax/email city mayors and councilors that need a smack down. Turn up the heat to help restore common sense back to what was once the great province of Ontario!

Please consider attending a rally for Calleigh in Kingston this Saturday, February 27, 2010.

Note from Calleigh's owner, Jamie Brierley:
I was given one month to hand over my dog to be put down because she was born after 2005.Yes she is a mix breed and a very well mannered dog that is spayed and does not deserve to be put down. This dog has even entered dock dog contests and every dog park known and has more compliments then anyone could imagine so please help me help her!

You can find the facegroup page for Calleigh here!

Saturday, February 27, 2010
12:00pm - 3:00pm
In front of City Hall, Kingston Ontario

We are rallying to oppose breed specific language in DOLA and to protest the persecution of responsible dog owners because their dogs are impacted by BSL. Join us to peacefully call attention to the plight of Brittany, Rambo, Calleigh and hundreds of other good dogs whose lives are threatened by Breed Specific Language. The owners of these good dogs have done no wrong, the dogs have had no complaints registered against them. They are victims of the political gamesmanship of Premier McGuinty, who thought to gain support by playing to the media and the hype surrounding this issue, instead of acting with wisdom, leadership and justice. IF WE GET CHASED AWAY FROM CITY HALL, WE WILL MEET UP AT THE CORNER OF BATH RD. AND SIR JOHN A. MACDONALD BLVD.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE RALLY ON SATURDAY. This link shows the location of City Hall. We will assemble across the street, in Centennial Park on the waterfront. From this downtown map I can tell you that there is a parking lot at the corner of Brock and Ontario, another indoor multilevel lot about two blocks up Brock just between Wellington and Bagot. There is another multilevel indoor lot on Brock, just above Montreal Street, two blocks from the second one I mentioned. There is no free parking in the downtown core. Parking is $1/ hour.
However, for those coming in on Sir John A Macdonald from the 401, the Kingston Centre has a large lot on the corner of Sir John A. and Bath, and there are buses that will take you downtown from there. The 1, the 4, and the 12 will take you within a couple of blocks of city hall via Johnson or Brock. Bus fare is exact change and is $2.25 for Adult fare, $2.00 for others.

Calleigh in happier times..

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Brampton council needs a temperment test

OK, this was too much fun...

I took the temperament test for Brampton council. Try it for yourself here.


You may be a sociopath and must seek help. You are pig headed and refuse to admit when you are wrong. You have a strong affinity to harm innocent animals and may be a danger to yourself and other innocent creatures. You should do the world a favor and remove yourself from humanity at once.  
Did you know that the American Pitbull Terrier passed temperament testing 85.3% of the time! That is 83.5% better than Brampton council!

So I was reading an article over at the Brampton Guardian this evening. They are saying the "City has hired a pitbull lawyer"! What in hell is a "pitbull" lawyer?

Is it a lawyer that specifically deals in "pitbulls"?
Is it a lawyer that likes to persecute "pitbulls" or "pitbull" owners?
Or is it a lawyer that acts like a "pitbull", whatever this supposed creature acts like?
Is it a lawyer that believes in Guilty Until Proven Innocent?
Is it a lawyer that believes there IS such a thing as a "pitbull"?

Maybe the city of Brampton should have hired MAG Counsel Robert Charney?

MAG Counsel Robert Charney at Remedy Arguments June 28, 2007, Superior Court of Justice:
"...This law was enacted to prevent 'pit bull' bites - not  dog bites in general'.
"...There is no such thing as a 'pit bull', Your Honour."
I dunno... I ain't no stinkin' expert.. cause there ain't any such thing as a breed expert in the business of cross bred dogs either... but these don't look like no stinkin' "pitbulls" to me???*&@$#

Britany left, Rambo right
Let's see.. 
Here is a Great Dane




American Bulldog


American Staffordshire Terrier

Brampton breed checker

Anyway, here is the article that was in the Brampton Guardian today. Thanks  to the Guardian for your unbiased reporting. You have obviously researched and fact checked and usually I don't use those two phrases in the same sentence as main stream media reporting. h/t to you!

City hires pitbull lawyer
The City of Brampton has hired a Toronto lawyer to help defend the seizure of two dogs last month.
Barnet Kussner of the firm Weirfoulds is on the case for the city, and that has one of the canines’ owners feeling like the underdog.
“Personally, I feel like it’s David versus Goliath,” said Rui Branco, whose family owns Brittany, one of two dogs held by the city since Jan. 13. Weirfoulds specializes in advisory work for municipal and other governments in all areas including contracts, land use planning and development.
Branco said with no other option to try to get the dogs home, he will take the city to court, but no one will win because he has to pay his own legal bills, and, as a resident of Brampton, his tax money will also be used to pay for the city’s lawyer.
“The taxpayers lose. I lose, being a taxpayer and also paying for my attorney. Most of all, the poor dogs lose because they are in captivity throughout the proceedings, which I understand can take months.”
Branco and Maria Gaspar, whose family owns Rambo, insist the dogs are boxer/American bulldog crosses, but the city has labelled them pitbulls and taken them from their separate homes. The families have not been allowed to visit them at the animal shelter.
Branco is concerned about the dogs’ health and well-being because they are being kept away from their families and kept in cages.
“I don’t care how much walking or attention the shelter or city says those dogs are getting, they have to be locked up because of liability issues and manpower issues at least 22 hours a day,” Branco said.
The families say a city Animal Control Officer seized the dogs without a warrant, adding they were intimidated into turning over the dogs when police arrived on Branco’s doorstep.
Attorney General spokesperson Brendan Crawley pointed to the Dog Owner’s Liability Act (DOLA) on the issue of seizure. The DOLA indicates a warrant is needed to seize a dog from a home. Seizure without a warrant is possible only if “... it would be impracticable to obtain a warrant because of exigent circumstances...exigent circumstances include circumstances in which the peace officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that entry into any building, receptacle or place, including a dwelling house, is necessary to prevent imminent bodily harm or death to any person or domestic animal.”
Dogs can also be seized in a public place under DOLA:

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Excellent video montage of Ontario's breed ban

h/t Tie Doggi

Brampton protest had 200 in support of Brittany and Rambo's owners

“We want to let the citizens of Brampton know what their tax dollars are going to— to support a system that is not in the best interest of animals,” said Ciaron Lewis, Peel resident and animal rights advocate who organized the weekend protest.
Follow this link to view the video from yesterdays rally in Brampton. Rui Branco (Brittany's owner) was interviewed by the Brampton Guardian. The city of Brampton has denied both owners access to their dogs by either dog experts or veterinarians.  The dog owners are trying to get Brampton council to look into this case further. So far the city has dug in their heels and stuck to their Neanderthal ways in keeping both dogs on death row. The placement on death row is not because of any wrong doing, but based on their own flawed, so called "breed identification process". Animal control seized both dogs as a result of trolling the neighborhood conducting their witch hunt. They spotted Rambo standing on top of his dog house, in his own fenced in backyard. No complaints were ever made against either dog.

Dog protesters rally

 From the Brampton Guardian February 20, 2010

Close to 200 protesters rallied outside Brampton City Hall Saturday afternoon to support the release of Brittany and Rambo, two dogs— alleged by the city to be pitbulls— who were seized from their homes Jan. 13.

Supporters say the city’s actions, and bylaws, are largely flawed and together with the dogs’ owners challenge the city’s lineage assessment of Brittany and Rambo. Rui Branco, owner of Brittany, is prepared to fight the city in court to prove the two dogs (who are brother and sister) are boxer/American bulldog crosses.
The protest was planned to keep the pressure on the city and to drum up support from local politicians.

“The mayor, city councillors...are stating legally they can’t interfere because it’s before the courts, but a court date hasn’t yet been set,” explained Branco, who is leading the fight against the city. “I’m hoping what will happen today is that cooler heads will prevail.”
Branco said if the matter does go to court, he’s optimistic about the outcome; he’s confident he’ll “overwhelm” the city with documentation and expert opinions proving the dogs are not pitbulls.
Protesters, however, fear the city will continue to tear dogs away from their families until municipal legislation changes. Brampton’s bylaw currently defines a pitbull as a pitbull terrier, Staffordshire bull terrier, American Staffordshire bull terrier, American pitbull terrier, or “a dog that has an appearance and physical characteristics that are substantially similar to those dogs.”

The city’s initial plan was to euthanize the dogs— but Branco stepped in with a lawyer to fight for the return of both families’ dogs.
Picketers carried signs reading “Stop the mass murder of mutts” and “When we kill any innocent being we lose our humanity.” One advocate carried a megaphone and played the recorded message “City of Brampton hear our cries, why do good dogs have to die?”.
“We want to let the citizens of Brampton know what their tax dollars are going to— to support a system that is not in the best interest of animals,” said Ciaron Lewis, Peel resident and animal rights advocate who organized the weekend protest.

Sarnia resident Graham Emslie made the trek to Brampton to show his support. As a pitbull owner, he can sympathize. “We want to try to get those two dogs back to their homes, and then get an amendment to the bylaw,” he said.

John Perlanski of Brampton feels the city’s actions are “excessive”, and the drastic measures applied to Brittany and Rambo will only perpetuate and escalate public fear about pitbulls.

The two dogs have been in the care of a municipal animal shelter, where city spokesperson Gordon Smith said the canines are in good care. The families, as well as their pets’ veterinarians, have been refused visitation.

The protest ran from roughly noon to 3 p.m.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Daddy, the ambassador for "pitbulls" passed on at age 16


Rest peacefully sweet old guy. You were an ambassador for dogs targeted by media hype worldwide. You were a constant companion and sidekick to Ceasar Millan, who has been a strong advocate for dogs in general and especially dogs given an unfair bad wrap. 
Please visit the memorial page to read a tribute to Daddy.

Deepest condolences to the Millan family.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Westminster Dog Show last night tonight

I am so excited!

The terrier group is on tonight. I love watching the whole show but love my terriers! I just finished watching the streaming video for the American Staffordshire Terriers.

Here is the link if you are interested.

The winner of the best of breed for the AST is:

Ch Castle Rock's Sbigstaff Mad About You
Breed: American Staffordshire Terrier
Sex: Bitch
AKC: RN 16977601
Date of Birth: July 05, 2008
Breeder: Laszlo Silz Nagy & Dayna Pesenti
Sire: Ch Castle Rock's CA Blue Stars
Dam: Dea Of Fianna
Owner: Genoa Brown & Dayna Pesenti

Congrats to you! 

We'll be armchair cheering for you during group tonight! You go girl!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Go Canada! Gold for Alex Bilodeau!

Canada's Alexandre Bilodeau wins GOLD in men's moguls at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics February 14, 2010.


Go Canada!!



Rally for the release of Brittany and Rambo

Event: Rally for the Release of Brittany and Rambo

When: Saturday, February 20 at 12:00pm.

Start Time: Saturday, February 20 at 12:00pm

End Time: Saturday, February 20 at 3:00pm

Where: Brampton City Hall - 2 Wellington Street West, Brampton, ON

To see more details and RSVP, follow this link on facebook

Also check out

Here is a link to a poster that may be printed and displayed anywhere you may go. Please help spread the word about this absolute outrage.

Mind bogglling isn't it?

Mind boggling how city officials or animal control departments can justify their actions when ripping dogs away from loving and caring owners. Animal control officers that actually still believe you can identify the breed makeup of cross bred dogs, not in the usual cute guessing game at the pound, but for certain.

Identify as in "your dog is "X" breed and "X" breed therefore we have a right to slaughter him".

Not because the dog is a threat. In fact your dog could be;

obedience trained
CGN certified (Canine Good Neighbor)
participate in dog sports
participate in therapy work
go to daycare facilities
go to dog parks
or be the best damn dog you ever owned

But if Animal Control happen to be driving by, spot your dog in your own yard, behind your own secure fence, but "think" it may be a "pitbull" (which doesn't exist! it is a catch all phrase for mutts of unknown origin or pariah dogs) they can violently rip it out of your home and place him/her on the slaughter list.

What in hell is wrong with that picture?

Don't we always preach, train, contain and socialize your dog. If you do those things, you are a responsible dog owner.

None of these aspects were being broken. Nowhere in the rules of responsible dog ownership does it state to keep your dog well out of sight and hidden away if you cannot prove what breed/s he/she is. In fact it is highly counter productive to keep your dog locked away from the outside world. This creates frustration and confusion for dogs due to their social nature. Dogs need socialization with people and other animals to teach them how to behave.

I suppose every dog owner in Brampton is now wondering if they should leave the house or let their dog out in their own yard, or walk their dog in daylight if their dog was born after Nov, 2005. Remember purebreds (registered and certified) dogs only make up approximately 20% of the dog population as a whole. The other 80% have no way of proving breed. This includes dogs that have been sold as "purebred" but do not come with registration papers. This is illegal, by the way, but we have all witnessed dogs sold under these pretenses.

Chicobandido and KC Dog Blog have excellent recent articles on this issue. Please give them a read!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

City of Brampton took out a full page ad in Guardian

The city of Brampton is making an attempt to give "their side" of the story by taking out a full page ad in the Brampton Guardian.

Feb 12/10

City had no choice but to seize dogs: commissioner

On behalf of the City of Brampton, I am writing to clarify the circumstances surrounding two dogs, Brittany and Rambo, currently being looked after by the City’s Animal Shelter. I would also like to correct some of the misinformation about why these family pets have come under our care.
The Province of Ontario’s Dog Owners’ Liability Act, 2005 has been hotly debated since it was first introduced. Under the legislation, identified pit bulls born prior to November 29th, 2005 are considered “legal” pit bulls in Ontario. The law also says that these dogs must be spayed, neutered, microchipped, registered and licensed annually by the City. Pit bulls born after November 29, 2005 are considered “illegal” under the provincial law.
Rambo and Brittany, the two dogs currently at the Animal Shelter were both born after November 2005 and are, therefore, considered illegal pit bulls under the provincial law. As a result, both dogs were taken into care by the city on Jan. 13. Once in the care and custody of our Animal Services, the legislation is very clear about what can and cannot be done with the dogs. Both the owners and the City are now faced with limited options about how to proceed. At the heart of this issue is whether the dogs are pit bulls.
Many of you will have read that the families have called for the return of their dogs, as they contend that Rambo and Brittany are not pit bulls. Even though the provincial legislation does not provide an appeal route for resolving this issue, the City approached the families’ lawyer last week to see if a mediated settlement was possible.
Unfortunately, the City could not reach an agreement with the families’ lawyer on the details of how this mediated process would work. The City’s offer remains open to the owners but, regretfully, the City anticipates that the family may seek an application before the Ontario Superior Court to argue that their dogs are not pit bulls and should be returned.
Readers should know that in instances where legal action is pending, as in the case with Rambo and Brittany, city staff and elected officials are unable to comment.
As we move forward, I want to assure everyone that Rambo and Brittany will continue to receive the highest level of care at our Animal Shelter. The dogs have been, and will continue to be, examined by an independent veterinarian to ensure their health and well being.
Throughout this process, we have understood that this is a sensitive issue involving family pets. It is our hope that the information in this letter has helped to set the record straight. We know that Brampton residents care deeply for their family pets, and that issues like this must be thoughtfully and cautiously considered.
We stand behind our Animal Services staff – they provide an important and compassionate service in our city.
Our team takes enormous pride in how we approach and interact with every family and their pet. This case has been no exception.

Jamie Lowery
Commissioner, Community Services

So, where is the clarification why the dogs came into the city of Brampton's care?

The fact of the matter is; Brampton obviously thinks any dog born after November 29, 2005 is a "pitbull".

The city of Brampton threw away all rights to use the words "sensitive" and "compassionate" when the AC department nabbed these two dogs while out on a trolling maneuver.

There is nothing "compassionate" about seizing people's loved pets from their homes for no apparent reason other than AC department thought they spotted a notorious "pitbull".

If the city of Brampton is indeed proud of how they have conducted themselves in this outrage of stealing people's pets out of their homes, then I would hate to catch you on a bad day! All the while hiding behind the piece of shit legislation that is vague and strips the rights of dog owners in Ontario. McGuinty and Bryant's masterpiece of death and destruction!

The city of Ottawa declared quite some time ago they were not enforcing the ban but rather dealing with owners of dangerous dogs not by breed or lack thereof. Many other jurisdictions around Ontario have also admitted they are choosing to ignore the flawed, costly and barbaric breed ban. 

The City of Ottawa says it will act when a dog of any breed presents a threat to public safety, but the city is not trying to crack down on pit bull-type dogs because it doesn't have the resources to do so, and the law pertaining to the dogs is difficult to enforce.

Hmm Brampton, are you taking notes? Doesn't it make more sense to leave the mutts alone. You cannot prove the lineage of a mutt and you know that. That leaves the explanation that you are throwing your proverbial weight around exercising the reverse onus, which makes the city of Brampton fully executing a witch hunt.

What on earth would possess you to seize dogs out of loving homes when there were no complaints, no wrong doing, and NO THREAT?

Your swollen pride is through the course of your actions, the self proclamation of being this months #1 dog hating community in Ontario.

Way to hurl Brampton. You should be proud!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Brampton is maintaining the madness

The Toronto Sun had an article today "Dog owners still pitted against animal control".

Brampton simply refuses to listen to common sense and realize they are under no obligation to randomly, so called identify mutts as "pitbulls" and rip them out of loving homes.

For Brittany and Rambo — a couple of dogs labelled as pit bulls — life is, well, the pits.
So say the owners of the dogs, which remain in the custody of Brampton Animal Services, having been seized Jan. 13 on the assumption they’re pit bulls.
Rui Branco, whose brother, Joseph, owns Brittany, says the family vet was denied access by the city to visit the caged animals Tuesday, a day after the city gave permission.
He said it’s a stressful situation for the families because they don’t know what conditions the dogs are living in.
“Monday afternoon, we negotiated with the city that he could come and then at 12:38 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon, they send my lawyer a letter telling us the vet can’t come and the city will provide us with a report on the welfare of the animals,” Branco, 42, said. “They didn’t give us a reason.”

Monday, February 8, 2010

Excellent article on the stripping of pet owners rights

I came across an excellent article on a blog called "Know The Lies".

It is called Your Cats and Dogs belong to You.. Not the Government.. Maybe!

This article was written by Dean A. Ayers.

Dogs, cats, pets and other animals have never been more a part of our lives than they are today. Even though nearly 45 million American homes have at least one canine or feline family member, dogs are being forced out of their homes by various dog ban legislation, dog taxing licensing, and dog law tyranny thru the mandatory requirements for home owner’s insurance outrageous premiums as a result of legislation dog insurance mandates.
These mandated dog insurance policies are being pushed by various animal rights activist groups, and law making people who ‘buy into’ the local media ‘hype’ when a dog bite incident occurs on private property or in the community.
The erosion of our freedom to own dogs, cats, pets and animals, rings true of the current political climate in the USA Today. We the People who own dogs, cats, pets and animals are especially struck by the public’s statements concerning agreement or apathy towards all the various government licensing to include that of our dogs, cats, pets and animals.
Read the rest...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Truly heartbreaking!

One Bark at a Time has a letter written by someone in Rambo's family.

Here is the link to One Bark's post.


I hope Brampton officials are sleeping well at night. 

Brampton Protest

Chianti's Blog has a good post today.

I mirror her feelings so I am going to direct you to her blog..

Her post is called Another BSL Outtake.

Chianti's picture at the end of the post is truly squeezable! Lucky Chianti lives in BC where BSL is, for the moment, still at threat level. Therefore she gets to be a real dog and do real dog things...

Friday, February 5, 2010

Skeldon has locking jaws and won't let go of his hatred for "pitbulls"

Just when you think you've heard the last of puppy killer/dog catcher Skeldon he manages to open his yap and spout off yet again.

I couldn't bear to listen to the interviews although there are links if you can stomach listening in. I have heard enough out of him to last a lifetime.

He accused the local Toledo elected officials of "not having one good thing to say" about Skeldon and his dog execution squad. What the hell "good" was there to discuss.

Here is a link to the article and video at  WTOL

Tom Skeldon reacts to relaxing regulations about pitbulls

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Former Lucas County Dog Warden Tom Skeldon is officially off the county's payroll and for the first time is opening up about pitbulls, The Toledo Blade, and his opinion about the safety of Toledo.
His reaction to how his job ended is one word, "Disappointed."
He says The Toledo Blade's reporting wasn't the most disappointing aspect even though he characterized its coverage as, "Absolutely biased and not true."
But when the criticism did come, he says, "There wasn't one elected official in town who stood up in the media and said one thing good about us."
He hopes Toledo's vicious dog law stays intact because a recent court ruling relaxes regulations about how many pitbulls someone can own with no muzzling required.
"If that's not overturned, that instead of having a letter carrier bitten, or a child bitten, you'll have three or four pitbulls fighting over a child," Skeldon said.
To this day Skeldon feels pitbulls are inherently dangerous.
"A pitbull is going to latch on to somebody and that tail is just wagging and they're just having a good old time."
He feels pitbull puppies brought into the pound should not go out of the pound. "They shouldn't have come into the pound. They were being bred illegally in the city of Toledo."
He was the dog warden for more than 22 years. Before that in the Peace Corp and military.
"If you look at the career I've been obviously blessed. In the past year-and-a-half, they were knocking the snot out of me and it was uncalled for."
There's much more of this interview, including how the letter carriers gave him an award for "Making the Streets Safer" and his feelings about Ben Konop, who was critical of him at the end.
Click on the Big Red Box to see more or click on the link to YouTube below.
Ben Konop responds:
"If anything, I regret not acting sooner in reforming the Lucas County Dog Warden.  Tom Skeldon directly supervised the killing of nearly 200 adoptable puppies since 2006.  That, amongst other malfeasance, was unacceptable.  Just because Mr. Skeldon was employed by the taxpayers for many years, or was first cousins with the President of the County Commissioners, does not mean that he should be held to a lower standard.  Change was sorely needed, and I'm optimistic that the revamped dog warden department will be a source of pride for all Lucas County residents."
The Toledo Blade responds:
Reaction to Tom Skeldon's recent comments:
 -Information about the Dog Warden's office was obtained through public records.
-Those reports lead to more information and readers lead staff members to additional information.
-The Blade dug up facts and reported what was there.
Source: Luann Sharp, The Toledo Blade Copyright 2010 WTOL. All rights reserved.

Speaking of peaceful protests...

The town where I live had a peaceful protester at the McDonalds and while he was at it hit the Sobey's grocery store as well.

It took 4 OPP officers and approximately 50 towns people to take the protester down. Eventually the protester was captured and returned back where he resides unharmed..

Have a look!

Peaceful protest organized for Brittany and Rambo in Brampton

From the Brampton Guardian,

Dog Fight Headed to Court

Facebook users have organized a peaceful protest at the City of Brampton’s Animal Shelter this Saturday morning in support of two dogs seized from their homes last month.
The protest will start at 9 a.m. and run until 11 a.m. at 475 Chrysler Dr.
“This is considered to be a peaceful protest to show the City of Brampton and Animal Control Services that the pet owners of Brampton and Ontario will not stand idly by while our civil rights are abused and our pets put in harms way by the system established to protect them,” organizers have said on a post to the site calling for the dogs, Rambo and Brittany, to be freed.
“May the protest be out of love for the dogs and support of the families involved, not out of anger for the system,” the organizers state.
Meanwhile, Rambo and Brittany, the two dogs seized from separate Brampton homes Jan. 13, are still being held by the City of Brampton, although the Feb. 5 deadline has been extended.
Rui Branco, whose family owns Rambo, said his lawyer will file court papers this week in his efforts to get the dogs back.
“I’m not a guy who wants his 15 minutes of fame,” Branco said Wednesday. “I just want my dog back.”
Branco maintains the dogs’ father is half boxer, half American bulldog, their mother is a purebred boxer, which makes Brittany and Rambo 75 per cent boxer and 25 per cent American bulldog.
City spokesperson Mariam Mesbah said the dogs, according to “documentary and veterinary evidence”, are illegal pitbulls.
“The City of Brampton is bound by provincial legislation to identify and take action where the health and safety of the community may be impacted by dogs deemed dangerous under the provincial law,” she said.
Rambo and Brittany are not accused of displaying any aggressive behaviour, have not bitten anyone, or ever run loose, both the city and the owners agree. There were no complaints about the dogs or their behaviour.
But a mistake by the city in 2008 that classified their father, Tyson, as a pitbull, is the documentary evidence the city is using as proof that they are pitbulls, according to Branco.
The family has documentation disputing that, but, others who have had their dogs seized by the city under the same law say no matter what kind of documentation is produced, no matter how many veterinarians say a dog isn’t a pitbull, it will not be accepted by the city.
“I’ve gone to bat a few times (for dog owners),” said local vet Dr. Tim Zaharchuk. “They send a form around with the owner, asking you to attest to the fact the dog isn’t a pitbull, but then when you do, they say they don’t believe you.”
He said it wastes time and gives the owners false hope, when, in the end, the city does not accept any professional opinion presented by the dog owners.
For what it’s worth, Zaharchuk said he has seen a picture of Brittany, and his professional opinion is she is a boxer mix.
A veterinarian for 29 years, Zaharchuk was president of the Ontario Veterinarians’ Medical Association when the province banned “pitbulls”, and the group fought it “tooth and nail”.
He is very critical of the law, but aside from his general feelings about it, Zaharchuk said it’s “very upsetting” the way the City of Brampton enforces it.
He said the city appears to be on a “witch hunt”, seeking out any dogs that even look like pitbulls.
He said he has warned some of his clients, whose boxers or bulldogs have  “characteristics” resembling a pitbull, to muzzle their dogs when they are out walking to avoid being stopped and questioned by Brampton Animal Control officers.
Mesbah said it is the animal control officers’ job to ensure dog owners are complying with the law, but disputed the characterization that city officials are on a witch hunt.
“It’s not that they are out there on the hunt for these dogs, certainly not,” Mesbah said, stressing the city workers love animals and they don’t want to see animals hurt.
“We certainly do feel for the families,” Mesbah said, adding the city will work with dog owners to find a home for their seized dogs outside of the province.
Close to 5,000 signatures are on a petition calling for the release of Rambo and Brittany at

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Brampton is getting some serious backlash!

Could it be that people are finally starting to "get it"?

I had a great email chat with someone today that emailed me to see if I had heard about Brampton. This person knows I like dogs but doesn't know me through the dog world..

She has a Lab but no papers. Things really clicked together for her today. She said "did you know they can just come in to your house and take your dog?" In a nutshell she basically said, wow now I know why you have been so bent out of shape for the last 5 years!

Nothing like picking on elderly ladies to get people all riled up! Dog hating Brampton may be in for a hell of a ride this time. "Dog" (God spelled backward) help them if they lay a hand on those dogs.. The public outcry will have Brampton thrown into the middle of Lake Ontario with no paddles.

I felt the "flavor" of things seem different in the media reports..

Check out this article from the Globe and Mail today..
 Boxer mixes caught up in pit bull controversy
Timothy Appleby
Toronto From Wednesday's Globe and Mail
One veterinarian's boxer is another vet's pit bull.
As a result, Rambo and his sister Brittany are languishing behind bars at the City of Brampton's animal shelter, possibly headed for the death chamber.
Their aggrieved owners, meanwhile, complain that whatever the city may say, neither beast is a pit bull at all.
Pit bulls are a type of dog rather than a breed and have garnered numerous headlines and a couple of high-profile court hearings since an amendment to Ontario's Dog Owners' Liability Act took effect four years ago.
Under the new rules, pit bull terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers, American Staffordshire bull terriers and American pit bull terriers are outlawed; those already here were allowed to remain, providing they be muzzled and leashed.
Straightforward enough. However, the legislation also contains a clause banning any dog “that has the appearance and physical characteristics substantially similar to” those specified.
For Rambo and Brittany, born in separate litters to the same parents, that inclusiveness has spelled bad news and their future looks bleak: If homes are not found for them outside Ontario they may be euthanized, though no execution date has been set.
Rambo belongs to 75-year-old Maria Gaspar. Brittany's home is across town with the Branco family.
Both were seized Jan. 13 by city animal control officials who said they believed the dogs were pit bulls.
Not so, says Rui Branco, who will host a press conference outside his Reeve Road home Wednesday morning in efforts to highlight the plight of the two siblings, neither of which is known to have attacked or threatened anyone.
Rather, their perceived sin rests with their lineage.
The dogs' mother was Jersey, a purebred boxer. No problem there.
But their dad was Tyson, born shortly after the pit bull law took effect in late November, 2005, and a survivor of the ban, apparently through an oversight. He was, nonetheless, classified as a pit bull, although Tyson's family vet disagrees, calling him “a healthy and well-socialized pet … a cross between an American bulldog and a boxer.”
Either way, Tyson's label as a pit bull means his offspring are deemed pit bulls, too.
“Animal Services has documentary and veterinary evidence that (Rambo and Brittany) are pit bulls,” city spokeswoman Mariam Mesbah said.
“The bottom line is that if the mother or the father is a pit bull and documented as such, any of their brood would be considered pit bulls. We are required by law to follow the legislation.”
Lawyer Megan Burkett, acting for the Brancos, is preparing a court motion to get both dogs back on grounds they were improperly seized, and says the law casts too wide a net.
“Tyson is an American bulldog and a boxer and if they wanted boxer to be in the legislation, it should have said boxer,” she said.
“That's what's causing the problem. Our position is that he looks like a boxer. A lot of breeds are being caught up in this that shouldn't be.”
Rambo's troubles began when he was spotted atop his doghouse in his fenced yard, and his detention left his elderly owner, Ms. Gaspar, distraught.
For the previous two years the city had licensed him as a boxer/American bulldog cross, she told a local newspaper, and his vaccination certificate states that.
Brittany was picked up later the same day. And her vet, Dr. David Kirkham, voices the same complaint of mistaken identity. “I don't understand why (city officials) are fighting me so hard on this,” he said.
“Brittany doesn't look anything like a pit bull.”
Last June, the Supreme Court of Canada declined to consider whether the four-year-old law is unconstitutional.
Thanks for the great article Timothy Appleby at the Globe and Mail.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Support for Brampton dogs on death row

The Brampton Guardian reported today there is a "groundswell" of support for Rambo and Brittany, two dogs currently waiting their fate while owners fight for their lives.

There has been a groundswell of support for two Brampton families whose dogs were seized by the city and labelled as illegal pitbulls.

A Facebook page calling for Rambo and Brittany to be released was started by those opposed to Ontario’s pitbull ban soon after The Guardian broke the news of the dogs’ plight Friday. The page has attracted close to 2,000 members, and an online petition is closing in on 3,000 signatures.

Bloggers are weighing in on the controversy, too, along with residents across Ontario and as far away as Texas. The vast majority are critical of the city’s handling of the situation, as well as the pitbull ban, which they say leads to the ‘misidentification’ of many dogs. Some are focusing their anger at animal control officers, saying they did not have to seize the dogs, while others are urging them not to blame the city employees, saying they had no choice.

Meanwhile, the Feb. 5 deadline for the Brampton dogs to be euthanized has been extended as the lawyer representing owners Rui Branco and his family prepares to take the fight to court to get the pets returned.

Both were seized from separate homes Jan. 13. The city’s veterinarian has declared they are pitbulls under the city’s bylaw, while the families say they are not, and have produced some documents identifying them as boxer/American bulldog mixes.

The two dogs are brother and sister, and for the past two years, Rambo has been licensed by the city as a boxer/American bulldog cross.

But when a passing animal control officer spotted Rambo sitting on top of his doghouse in 75-year-old Maria Gaspar’s backyard in December, the senior citizen was questioned about his breeding.

The Gaspars and Brancos have been told there were no complaints about their dogs, and no accusations of aggressive behaviour, running loose or biting. Similar to what happened to Rambo, an animal control officer who went to collect a licence fee from the Branco home spotted Brittany and started asking questions about her lineage.

Both dogs were seized, and have been held at the city’s animal shelter ever since.

Neither of the dogs actually did anything to deserve jail time and death. Oh wait, they appeared  to look like something that Brampton AC determined fits Dalton McGuinty's description of a "pitbull".

Dalton is a busy boy washing all that blood off his hands.

I would just like to clear up another irritation. The word euthanize is meant for a humane way to destroy an animal that has lost all quality of life.

The word that needs to be assigned to describe the fate ordered to thousands of dogs in this province since 2005 thanks to the McGuinty Fiberals is;

take your pick...



taken out in their prime of life

snuffed out


Dogs at Camp boarding kennel and daycare get a negative rating

Recently the daycare/boarding kennel where I have taken my dog for the last 4 years has closed their doors. I am saddened and miss them dearly. I have gained a dear friend in the owner of the business and deeply appreciate the excellent care they have taken of my sweet boy for the last 4 years. In shopping for a new facility for daycare/boarding services, I suddenly realize how invaluable the great service was! What I look for is someone to trust with the safety and well being of my beloved pet.

Dog owners everywhere can relate how important choosing the right kennel/daycare is for your pets. Their safety, happiness, security and well being are in the hands of someone else when we are not there to protect them. In an industry that is unregulated (pet training, daycare, boarding and dog walking) is “buyer beware” so to speak. None of these services fall under a licensed trade and other than municipal “inspections” there are no real regulations on these businesses. Often municipal inspections do not exist or they are overlooked. You must ask questions and do your homework. Never assume tasks are being performed.

There is no stipulation for credentials ie. background in training or real hands on animal experience. In my opinion a veterinary technician, dog walker, trainer, rescue worker or dog breeders do not necessarily qualify to be well versed in the monitoring of groups of dogs. The reason I say this is because they may or may not be experienced in a particular background but there is no way of measuring the competency level. 

Other than a veterinary technician, none of the backgrounds I mentioned require any formal training. That being said, veterinary technicians are not trained to run a daycare/boarding/training facility. They are trained to be a vet tech. Handy for first aid, but not necessarily the skills needed to run a daycare/boarding facility.

A daycare/boarding facility located near where I live called Dogs at Camp seemed like a good place to start my search for a new facility. It is closest to where I live. They are a franchise with locations in Uxbridge, Ottawa and Cookstown Ontario. I began with an email which I have included in its entirety. I believe you can learn a whole lot by asking several pointed questions.
Here is how things went... 

On 26/01/10  Lori Gray wrote:
Dear Dogs at Camp,

I was just looking over your website.
I have a couple questions.

Do you allow all dogs to attend your daycare/boarding?

What does your temperament test consist of when you are interviewing dogs for daycare? Who performs the test and what are the credentials?

How do you keep short haired dogs warm if they stay in a barn overnight?

How do you keep things clean where the dogs stay?

Thank you,
Lori Gray

Date: Wed,
27 Jan 2010
Subject: Re: Daycare/Boarding
From: Dogs at
Camp Cookstown

To: Lori Gray

Hi there Lori,

In answer to your questions – no we do not allow all dogs to stay with us.

We conduct a ‘visit’ prior to each dogs stay with us. This allows our staff to see how a new visiting dog interacts with our current campers. Assuming all goes well and we see no signs of dog or people aggression and we believe the new dog is suited for camp then he/she is permitted to stay with us. Another reason we do visits is to give you an opportunity to see our facility and you get a run through of what a day at camp is like. How the visit works is, you will arrive with your dog on leash and head down to the field/barn with a staff member who will explain some of the things we offer here. All the current dogs will be in the barn while your dog has an opportunity to take a sniff around our enclosed field off leash. Once he/she is comfortable we start letting dogs out of the barn and into the field one at a time. This allows us to assess a new ‘visiting’ dogs behaviour in a slow and non threatening way. Once all the dogs are in the field you will be taken into the barn where a staff member will run through our policies and procedures with you and answer any questions you may have. While you are inside – your dog will be in the field with the other staff member who will be monitoring your dogs interaction with the other dogs as well as how well he/she does without you there. At that point the visit is complete and we will let you know whether or not it was successful.

We have a fully heated barn and lots of beds – the dogs never get cold inside the barn. However, the winter months can be quite cold outside so we do have dogs jackets here that we will put on some of the shorter hair breeds if necessary. We also have Dogs at Camp dog jackets for purchase if a dog arrives without one.

In answer to your last question – the barn stays pretty clean because the dogs are constantly in and out of the barn so they have ample opportunity to eliminate outside. And since cleanliness is a priority for us we have an extensive daily cleaning schedule. All of the details of how we do this is reviewed during the visit.

If you have any further questions you can email back or give us a call in the office.


Sabrina Nacinovich
Camp Director
Dogs at Camp Cookstown Inc.

On 27/01/10 Lori Gray wrote:
Dear Sabrina,
Thanks for your reply.
So I assume you do not discriminate against breed, judging from your information. I didn't see anything noted on your website either.

My dog has been going to daycare his entire life and he is now 4 1/2. He plays well with all dogs and is well socialized. We do Rally O, CKC
confirmation, and obedience plus he goes to daycare one day a week. I doubt he'll have any problems passing your "visit". If you wouldn't mind answering for me, what are the credentials of the person performing the "visit" or testing.

What is your cost for daycare? What is your cost for boarding?

Lori Gray

From: Dogs at Camp Cookstown
Sent: January 28, 2010
To: Lori Gray

Hi Lori,

The staff that take you on the visit have been through an extensive 80 hour training program which includes several topics such as dog breeds, behaviour, and communication among the pack. They have also taken the steps to become Pet First Aid Certified. All staff are hired based on having some prior experience with dogs in one way or another. For example, our Camp Manager
is a veterinary technician and another employee runs her own dog rescue organization.

Our cost for Day Camp is $25/day or $200 for a 10 Day Camp Package.
Our boarding costs are as follows...

1 – 7 nights - $40/night
8 – 14 nights - $38/night
15 – 27 nights - $35/night
28 nights or more - $32/night

Just a couple questions for you...

What is your dogs name?
Is he neutered?
What is his breed?
Is he up to date on vaccinations?

Unfortunately, we do not accept Pit Bulls for boarding. We are a franchise and because of that we have certain policies we must abide by – this being one of them.

Thank you,

Sabrina Nacinovich
Camp Director
Dogs at Camp Cookstown Inc.


From: Lori Gray
Sent: January 28, 2010
To: Dogs at Camp Cookstown
Hi Sabrina,

Thanks again for your reply.

Please clarify your statement about not taking "pitbulls" for boarding? Is your policy only for boarding and not daycare? What do you classify as a "pitbull"? Are you including purebred dogs? I don't understand what you mean about franchise policy? Are you telling me the franchise is dictating which breeds or non breeds of dogs you can accept? Are you saying that you base behaviour on breed not training and socialization?
Please clarify your policy on this matter.


FW: Daycare/Boarding

From: Glen Kowarsky – Dogs at Camp
Sent: January 29, 2010
To: Lori Gray
Cc: Sabrina Nacinovich Dogs at Camp Cookstown

Hi Lori,

I am the
of Dogs at Camp Canada Ltd., the franchisor - and Sabrina forwarded me your email below, since part of what you’re asking about relates to the requirements by us (the franchisor) of franchisees.
In answer to your questions:
We do of course screen dogs for suitability within our camp setting based on temperament.  The only exception to that is the “pitbull’, as defined below.

 The Dog Owners Liability Act defines a ‘pitbull’ as follows:
· A pit bull terrier
· A Staffordshire bull terrier
· An American Staffordshire terrier
· An American pit bull terrier
· A dog that has an appearance and physical characteristics substantially similar to any of those dogs.

We realize that the last line of that definition is subjective, and as business owners we make that call to the best of our abilities in each case.

Our policy with respect to the dogs who fall within this category applies to both day campers and overnight campers, and at each of our locations. The reasons for our decision not to accept these dogs at camp have to do with two concerns:  Firstly, we are dealing each and every day with large groups of dogs, and our clients have been very clear with us over the 8 years during which we’ve been in business, that given the nature of our boarding environment - we adhere to the same laws put in place for the sake of the ‘public’ by the Province.  Additionally, in our early years in business - we did accept these dogs, and though some of them are and were wonderful dogs, we saw some unprovoked and unpredictable behaviour in enough instances  to decide not to continue to accept these dogs.  Even if it is rare, un unlikely, and has not been seen by the owner, the fact is that the jaws of these dogs are particularly strong, and on the occasions on which we saw the behaviour to which I’m referring, it was very difficult to separate the dogs because of the strength of their jaws, and, the resulting damage they can do (and did) was and is of enough concern to us to have made that decision.

In terms of the requirement we have in place for each franchisee:    As a franchisor, by way of franchise agreements, we do indeed dictate all aspects of the operations of our facilities to franchisees, who must then abide by all of our policies and our procedures, without exception.

Lori, I realize based on your email that you may have one of these breeds, but if not, please correct me.  In our minds, there is no such thing as a ‘bad dog’.  Dogs are innocent and wonderful animals...each and every one of them.  If there is behaviour that we see in a breed which is of concern, it can at times come from characteristics resulting from many many years of breeding dogs for particular purposes.  The dogs are therefore doing exactly what human beings have bred them to do.  In our minds, therefore, there is no ‘blame’ and as I said, no ‘bad dog’.   Our policy is simply a business decision which we feel is best for our type of business.

If you don’t have one of these breeds, please – as I mentioned – correct me, and if you’d like to visit with your dog, we’d be happy to arrange that.



Glen Kowarsky
, Dogs at Camp Canada Ltd.

I have chosen not to respond to Glen’s email response to me. I feel it is a better use of my time to inform you, the public since none of this information is on their website.

There are a couple points I would like to make.

The jaw pressure reference is urban legend known by anyone who is “hip” to dogs, and has been disproven by no less than National Geographic. That tells me quite a lot about the knowledge of dogs in general or lack thereof. 

-There is no such thing as a “pitbull”. NO ONE is qualified to determine the breeds of a cross bred dog. The four pure breeds mentioned are so incredibly rare in this province that I doubt anyone at Dogs at Camp has met one. What Glen is telling me is that if I own ANY OTHER breed or cross breed of dog other than the ones he has mentioned, they have no problems accepting them, based on their “visit”.  Is Glen telling me is they are equipped to deal with any dog upward of 250 lbs that decides to behave aggressively with any other dog or person but they aren’t equipped to deal with a 25 lb to 75 lb well-socialized dog?

- Glen mentioned they had “unprovoked and unpredictable behaviour with these dogs” in the past. An experienced dog handler can "read" a dog and know the dog's next move.  Does 80 hours of training give a person sufficient experience with different temperaments and types of dogs to allow them to call themselves "experienced" dog handlers? 

- “Our clients have been very clear with us over the 8 years during which we’ve been in business, that given the nature of our boarding environment - we adhere to the same laws put in place for the sake of the ‘public’ by the Province”. I find it quite the contrary.  Most dog owners would rather leave their dogs in the care of businesses that base policy on knowledge and experience, not discrimination and myth.

Do you feel safe taking your dog to Dogs at Camp? It is entirely up to you just as it is any establishment's prerogative to write their policies.

Have you had an experience with a dog related business good or bad? Please email me at

This has prompted me to do an in depth investigation into dog related business around the province. I think dog owners regardless of breed may be interested in checking my results before shopping around.

Stay tuned for more investigations.