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Old 03-02-2013, 06:35 PM
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Default Colorado Senators to Intorduce Bill to Require Cops Take Dog Training

http://www.denverpost.com/ci_2270162...-cops-take-dog

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Two Colorado senators alarmed at the number of incidents where police have shot dogs are planning to introduce a bill next week that would require officers to take annual canine classes.

Sens. Lucia Guzman, a Denver Democrat, and David Balmer, a Centennial Republican, said they hope the training will help police understand the difference between a barking dog and a dangerous dog.

"Landscaping companies, delivery companies they deal with dogs all the time, and they don't shoot dogs," Balmer said.

Both Balmer and Guzman own dogs.

Among those expected to testify in favor of their bill is Gary Branson of Pueblo, whose 4-year-old labrador mix was shot multiple times by a Commerce City police officer after the pet escaped a relative's home.

A draft copy of Balmer and Guzman's bill mentions the death of Branson's dog, Chloe, and other dogs shot by police in the metro area.

The bill would require police departments to adopt policies and procedures for dealing with dogs, including allowing owners to first try to handle the pet. Officers must initially go through a two-hour course, then a one-hour refresher course annually, which could be Web or video training.

The bill includes exceptions for using force, such as when police are responding to a dangerous dog call or violent crime.

"We think the bill strikes the right balance," Balmer said. "It is very respectful of law enforcement, but it is intended to safeguard our beloved dogs."

The bill deals only with dogs.

"I don't know of an officer shooting a cat," Balmer said.

"We want to make sure people know we aren't talking about a fox that comes into some neighborhood," Guzman said.

Branson's attorney, Jennifer Edwards of The Animal Law Center, said the bill is needed.

"The reason I think it is important is dogs are not just property to most people, they are their short, hairy children," she said. "They are a part of the family, and it is absolutely devastating to lose an animal and to lose an animal so wrongfully when it could be solved by better training and better understanding of dog behavior."

In Branson's case, the 58-year-old left Chloe with a relative while visiting his brother in California last November. The dog got out through an open garage door and was running around the neighborhood.

Commerce City police said the dog was aggressive and continued to behave that way after being restrained with an animal-control noose. Chloe was shocked with a Taser and then shot multiple times.

Commerce City police Officer Robert Price faces a felony charge of aggravated cruelty to animals, which the state Fraternal Order of Police has called "outrageous."

I really hope it passes. The Chloe incident was just awful, and unfortunately, not the only one.
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:50 PM
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I hope this passes in every state. I've heard of so many friendly, but vocal dogs getting shot and harmed, when all they really wanted to do was to be pet or left alone. Hopefully this will get passed, and these terrible incidents can be avoided in the long run.
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Old 03-02-2013, 11:01 PM
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Doesn't Denver still have extreme BSL?

I worry about this type of thing an absurd amount. Police came to our house a few days ago and I let them search the house voluntarily so that I could control the situation and make sure the dogs were out of the way, so that they weren't compelled to come back with a warrant, kick down my door, and shoot my dogs. My boyfriend has his license to possess medical marijuana, and we think it was something related to that, but everything checked out with the officers.
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Old 03-02-2013, 11:32 PM
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Unfortunately, yes. BSL is still a thing here and you can't have a pittie or pittie-mix. There's talk of them revoking it due to costs and lack of people actually following the rules, though there seems to be little follow-through.
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Old 03-02-2013, 11:34 PM
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I guess I just wish they'd put effort into chnging he BSL if dogs is something they want to make a priority. More are dying because of their breed than are being shot accidentally.
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Old 03-02-2013, 11:49 PM
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I know. And the thing that sucks is there are a lot of people not following the rules and getting pitties right now. The cops kind of don't care at this point. But in general, the people getting the dogs are the ones who probably can't handle that kind of animal whereas the ones who are choosing to follow the law would often make for a much better fit. The idiots who shouldn't be owning a pittie but do anyway give the dogs a bad name, BSL steps in, and we're right back were we started.
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:29 PM
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Great initiative! Too often have dogs been shot when cops don't know how to handle a situation correctly. They get scared and often shoot or abuse the animal who may just be in the wrong place at the wrong time
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:39 PM
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"The bill includes exceptions for using force, such as when police are responding to a dangerous dog call or violent crime."

So since most calls about "Pit Bulls" wandering loose/around neighborhoods are deemed to be "dangerous dog calls" I guess that means cops can still roll up and go open-season on loose "Pit Bulls" regardless of the dogs' actual demeanor?
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SevenSins View Post
"The bill includes exceptions for using force, such as when police are responding to a dangerous dog call or violent crime."

So since most calls about "Pit Bulls" wandering loose/around neighborhoods are deemed to be "dangerous dog calls" I guess that means cops can still roll up and go open-season on loose "Pit Bulls" regardless of the dogs' actual demeanor?
Probably but I am hoping (and assuming their hope is) that by taking some classes and learning about dogs maybe some officers will actually realize the difference between a dangerous dog and one that is manageable in the moment, pit or not.

I understand leaving it open....would never pass without. I do think the intent is good though and that it could help
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SevenSins View Post
"The bill includes exceptions for using force, such as when police are responding to a dangerous dog call or violent crime."

So since most calls about "Pit Bulls" wandering loose/around neighborhoods are deemed to be "dangerous dog calls" I guess that means cops can still roll up and go open-season on loose "Pit Bulls" regardless of the dogs' actual demeanor?
I'm sure some people would take it that way, unfortunately. Especially since Colorado sill has a lot of pit bull hysteria caused by BSL.
What would be nice is if people would call animal control instead of the police. But that'll never happen.
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