My First Blogspondent Assignment – Part II

Hey, It’s Jet Here.

Yesterday, Mom and I posted our first interview.  Thanks again to Ledy Vankavage, Senior Legislative Attorney for Best Friends Animal Society, for taking the time to educate us on such timely and important issues.

Back to the interview…

MOM:  Can you help us educate people on breed profiling/discrimination, since our legislation is up for a vote on MONDAY!

LV:  I recommend that people visit The National Canine Resource Council as a source of reliable information and in particular the Pit bull Placebo.     Pit Bulls are the new landsharks thanks in large part to the media. Pit Bull Misidentification: Did you know that Animal Control workers and police officers misidentify pit bulls 75% of the time?  We know this from DNA testing.

MOM:  Wow!  I (Mom) remember when Dobermans were considered vicious, child eaters, inbred to promote their aggressive aspects.   Then, the hype moved on to Shepherds, then to Rottweilers, now Pitbulls.  How do the power breeds segue from perceived landsharks to pets?

LV:  When people realize breed profiling does not work.  Of course, if a breed increases in popularity, more incidents will occur.  Any dog can bite or become aggressive.

MOM:  What approach would you prefer legislators to pursue?  

LV:  I favor Reckless Owner Ordinances.  This type of law punishes the human for inappropriate behavior and prohibits the person from owning an animal for a substantial amount of time after a conviction of abuse, neglect, etc…

MOM:  Since you worked with pet adoptions, on Jet’s behalf, I would appreciate hearing your thoughts on black pearls (black dogs). 

LV:  Of course.  You’re correct, black dogs have about a 40% lower adoption rate and if the black dog has a blocky head, forget it, they’re toast.  (meaning 90% lower adoption rate.) As you know, black dogs make wonderful pets, color discrimination has no scientific data behind it.

MOM:  Can I check in with you in a few months see what’s going on?

LV:  Sure, let’s hope we speak on Monday, when the Miami Dade breed ban hopefully fails…

MOM:  Thanks so much for taking the time to chat and all you do to protect those without a voice.

Another great, educational, newsy day.

Thanks to Life with Dogs, Two Little Cavaliers and Confessions of the Plume for sponsoring today’s Hop.

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My First Blogspondent Assignment – Part I

Hey, It’s Jet Here.

Mom receives weekly updates from a wonderful place called Best Friends Animal Society.  Their mission:  No More Homeless Pets.  Mom volunteered there for 3 days with my human sister, Rachel, about five years ago.  Their experiences changed both of them.  They still brag about having three doggie sleepovers!  Guess what?  Now the Best Friends folks permit cat, rabbit and PIGGIE sleepovers, too!

On Monday, Miami Dade County will vote on a law which could cause neighbors to turn in neighbors who own pit bulls.  Click here to see the legislative activities occurring in your state.

Mom emailed Best Friends because she wanted to post the petition link on her facebook page without her personal information.  Ledy Vankavage, Senior Legislative Attorney, wrote back trying to help.  Mom, ever the go-getter, asked Ledy if we could interview her regarding breedism, a “hot topic.”  She graciously agreed.  When I dictate MOM, please know I mean Mom asked the questions that she and I previously agreed upon.   

MOM:  How did you get into this field?  

LV:  After law school, I learned that where I lived, Madison County, killed animals for research.  (In the ‘80s…)  Upon learning this fact, I recruited five people to work on changing the policy, which we successfully did in 60 days.

I then learned that the shelter took in 4,000 animals/year and adopted out 78 with the remaining animals euthanized or sold for research.  Working within the shelter, after forming an adoption agency, we adopted out 900 animals the first year!   Click here to find out more amazing positions Ledy created/held to help my fellow pets.

MOM:  In alignment with Best Friends Mission of No More Homeless Pets, what areas currently top your “to do” list?

LV:  Breed profiling/breed discrimination, community cats and puppy mills.

Tomorrow: Part II – More specifics on breed discrimination legislation and adoption stats.

Another great journalistic day.