“I held her and I told her to go, just go, and she died.”
These were the traumatic last seconds of life that Valley Calderoni spent with her 4-year-old dog, Kaoru, after a trigger-happy hunter shot and killed the animal in cold blood.
— CTV Vancouver (@CTVVancouver) September 20, 2017
Calderoni and a colleague, Markie Blackburn, were hiking with Kaoru and 10 other dogs in a forest in British Columbia, Canada. They were preparing to turn back when Calderoni heard a loud bang and instinctively crouched. When she looked up, what she saw several feet away broke her heart.
“And I look up, and I see my dog, and she was bleeding,” Calderoni told CBC News. “I turned around and said, ‘Markie, oh my God, my dog has been shot.'”
Kaoru lay bleeding as Calderoni rushed to her side. While the guardian held onto her fading dog, she heard Blackburn yell at the hunter, “Put the gun down.”
British Columbia conservation officers said that the hunter had been out looking to kill deer and had misidentified Kaoru as a wolf—although killing a wolf is illegal where the shooting took place.
This bloodlust-filled hunter couldn’t recognize a domesticated dog who was well known for being friendly and gentle. He had only murder on his mind.
Like all animals killed for hunters’ kicks, the victim hadn’t harmed this hunter before he picked up his gun. Calderoni told reporters that she worries anyone could have easily been a target instead. Besides being a common, family-friendly hiking, destination, the area is a popular spot for dog walking and mountain biking.
According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, thousands of injuries to humans are attributed to hunting in the U.S. every year.
Calderoni now mourns the loss of her friend and has started an online petition that calls for a total ban on hunting in the area where Kaoru was killed.
It takes a very small person indeed to enjoy traumatizing, hurting, and killing animals who are minding their own business.
Hunting is cruel and unnecessary and breeds insensitivity toward the suffering of others, disturbs animal populations, and damages ecosystems. Thankfully, like most blood sports, it’s dying out quickly as a new generation recognizes that animals are part of our environment and not moving targets to massacre for kicks.
Instead of engaging in cruel, deadly wildlife activities, such as hunting, trapping, and fishing, enjoy nature with one of the many harmless alternatives, such as wildlife photography, bird watching, hiking, kayaking, camping, or canoeing.
What You Can Do
Most people enjoy seeing animals without wanting to shoot them with a bullet or an arrow. PETA encourages kind people everywhere to support wildlife-protection measures and anti-hunting legislation and help make this cowardly cheap thrill a thing of the past.