I am a law abiding citizen of Colquitt County and the City of Ellenton. I have a small dog and a cat that have both been spayed and neutered and are up-to-date on all their shots. My dog, because of the laws, is on a chain because my mother is allergic. She has a food dish that I have to put small amounts of food in throughout the day, a water dish, a dog house with blankets and a heat lamp. She cannot even reach the property line and I keep her area clean of dog potties.
The problem I have been having is the larger dogs that are running free in Ellenton eating her food and defecating in my yard. I have come up with an eating schedule that allows her to eat and not them. That may sound cruel but I do not have a job and am struggling to make ends meet until my new job starts. I don't have the money to buy and install a dog pen or a fence.
This afternoon (12/28/12) at about 12:50 p.m. I went to town with my mother. As we were getting in the car to leave my dog was "sitting pretty" for me on her hind legs with her front paws in front of her. When we got home, at about 4:00 p.m. I noticed her lying a little ways from her dog house. That was nothing alarming because she did perk up her ears and acknowledge that she heard us pull in.
This evening at about 5:30 p.m. I went out to take her for an evening walk around the track, because she needs some exercise. She got up slowly from where she had been lying and eased over to me.
This behavior is very unusual for her, she is usually very hyper when I come over to her area, jumping up on me and trying to tangle me up in her chain.
When I bent over to put the leash on her so I could take her walking, I noticed a small spot on her back that was wet. I figured she had licked herself there, so I picked her up to get a better look at her. Then I became horrified. My baby had been bitten by one of the larger dogs roaming the neighborhood. She was bleeding very badly and I don't have the money to take her to the vet to have it checked out.
At this time I have cleaned the wound with soap and water and packed it with vaseline. I am praying that she does not get an infection.
Why do people who are following the laws and rules have to suffer and pay for those who don't care enough about their animals to even feed them? This makes no sense to me.
I have repeatedly asked the city officials to do something about these strays. Their answer is a to put out a dog trap, that these dogs can't even get in, and then they don't check on it.
The trap gets so smelly, from the food they put in it that rottens and gets maggots in it, that we have to call and beg them to do something about the trap.
We did catch one small dog in it and we called the clerk’s office to have the trap and dog removed, which they did. However, instead of taking the dog to the pound like their rules say to do, they released it back in the city to roam free again.
I don't know which stray bit my dog but it angers me because I have done everything I am required to do by law to take care of my animals and others don't even try. They let their animals run free and hurt other animals.
Is there anything that we as law abiding and tax paying citizens can do to make the officials do their job? Or to make the other citizens take care of their animals so another animal does not get killed or hurt by them?
Sheila Yvette Kearce
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