I had not intended to post today, but felt obligated to in light of this horrific story which occurred in my country. I had heard of this story earlier on main stream radio in my province, but then it disappeared as so many things do when they lose the attention of the media.
For people who are not Canadians, Whistler is a ski/ outdoor activity area that is a jewel located in the Rockies and is easily accessible form Vancouver, which accounts for much of its popularity. I have skied there when I was young and loved the experience. Sled dogging has enjoyed a renaissance in winter vacation areas and is another wonderful experience, not to be missed if ever you have the opportunity. There has been a rise, then in the number of outfitters offering this experience.
Vancouver Radio CKNW uncovered this story and I ran into it again because an organization that I have a membership to featured it in their online newsletter. This organization would be described by a member of the right (read Republican, or Conservative depending on where you live) as a bunch of socialist, tree hugging, greeney so and so's. Did I miss any? It's called CARE2,and they put together a petition which I'm asking you to support whether you live here or not.
The Company, Outdoor Adventures Whistler, had a downturn in bookings after the winter Olympics. They had too many sled dogs and decided to downsize them. A local vet ,to his credit, refused to put them down, so an employee shot them over a two day period, April 21 and 23. The story doesn't end here however. The employee was so traumatized that he applied to B.C. Workers' Compensation and received it for for post traumatic stress disorder. And this is how the whole story came out, which his lawyer told to the press.Not bad enough to kill, the shooting was poorly done and throats were slashed and some dogs were buried alive in the mass graves.
The SPCA of BC is investigating, but a whole lot of this story looks like non -government supervision, because sled dog outfits should be routinely checked for animal cruelty and the legislation is in place.
Before you say why sign a petition since it's after the fact. Let me draw your attention to a few things.
Most of you know I shoot my photos in a wilderness. I have no protection from the wild animals. Yet the only attack I've had was from a Bouvier de Flanders, that was running free on the forest fringe, and I may have startle him. The owner had great difficulty in getting him under control, and then lit out in his car. When I called the dog control, they wanted me to have the guy's name, but I had photos of the dog and the car and the license plate. The dog officier told me he couldn't do anything with that.
But I'm persistent, so I phoned the police who it appears now have switched to civilian phone operators who refused to put me through to the sergeant on duty, but wanted to send me back to the dog man. I got her name and told her that I was bringing a charge under the Canine Control Act in Magistrates' Court and charging her, the city, and the Police Chief as co-defendants. I got the sergeant lickety split, who looked up the information phoned the dog officier and gave it to them. I received a follow up call from a local constable who asked if I was satisfied, and offered to go out and see the guy but told me he would likely have to shoot the dog. So we, him and I, left it up to the Dog officer.
The point I'm making is that if you don't demand that officials, elected or bureaucrats, do their jobs they won't.
So please sign the petition. They'll ask for your email address and I can't guarantee that you won't start to receive the newsletter.