Written by PETA
Some officious cop in San Marcos, Texas, recently thought it a better idea to berate a grieving couple instead of helping them get their dying dog to a veterinary hospital. Krystal Hernandez held Missy, a choking teacup poodle, as Michael Gonzalez rushed south along I-35 from their home toward the New Braunfels Veterinarian Clinic. The trio sped by Officer Paul Stephens at 95 miles per hour in a 70 miles per hour zone.
The rookie officer pulled the couple over, then called for backup. After Stephens pulled the couple over, things got really crazy.
Once Officer Stephens realized that the dog was in danger (according to him, Missy's tongue was out of her mouth, and she was unmoving), he gave Hernandez and Gonzalez a hard time instead of a helping hand. As another officer struggled to clear Missy's airway and administered CPR, Stephens lectured Gonzalez about his driving and imparted this insightful jewel: "It's a dog, OK? You can get another one. Relax." Check out the video below:
The officers claimed that the dog was already dead at that point, so there was no emergency.
San Marcos Police Chief Howard Williams ordered a reprimand against Stephens, who is 23 and has served as an officer for 15 months, but found him not guilty of misconduct. The department also discussed dismissing Gonzalez's speeding ticket.
Gonzalez filed a complaint against the officer and claimed that valuable time was wasted, which resulted in Missy's death. Choking is a deadly serious matter and appeared in recent headlines when Oprah Winfrey lost one of her beloved dogs last year from a choking accident. We recommend reading up on the Heimlich maneuver for dogs. We also recommend asking the San Marcos Police Department to implement a sensible strategy for cases like this one that involves training for these situations and disciplinarian action should the death of an animal result from an officer's nonchalant and overbearing attitude. That's what community relations classes are for. Get involved here.
Update: Amusing as it is, it looks like this story may not have been entirely factual. Makes me feel a bit sheepish. Thanks to Amy and Canaduck for pointing that out!
Apparently, thousands of rich Japanese women were conned into buying lambs as pets, believing them to be super valuable miniature poodles. No, I’m not kidding. This insane scam was brought to light when Japanese movie star Maiko Kawakami complained on a talk show that her new poodle refused to bark or eat dog food. Another couple found out the truth when their groomer told them that she couldn’t cut the “poodle’s” nails, umm, because they were hooves! As funny as these people’s clueless-ness is, the sad part is that the aftermath of this scam is that hundreds or thousands of sheep have been left to God only knows what fate.
It reminds me of the way people in this country jump on the bandwagon and buy purebred puppies because they match the drapes in their new house, because they’re trying to make their lives look like a picture from an LL Bean catalog or because the latest Disney movie makes the kids beg for one. Then, a few months later after the novelty has worn off, the dogs wind up in shelters, or worse, on the street. This whole poodle thing is really no less absurd than the dalmatian craze that swept the US after the 101 Dalmatians sequel came out a few years ago and the clown fish craze after Finding Nemo.
It’s funny that this story came up now, as next week is national Be Kind to Animals Week, and to celebrate we’ll be highlighting one simple thing per day we can all do to make the lives of our own companion animals better and to help animals nationwide. But I want to start a little early. Let’s all agree not to buy sheep as house pets. If we can all agree to do that, I think we’re on the right track . . . OK, yes, now I’m kidding.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.