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Boiling Spring Lakes resident is accusing neighbor of animal abuse

A pit bull is at the center of a dispute between two Boiling Spring Lakes neighbors. Anita Pinckney says her neighbor has a history of abusing dogs.

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BSL dog in need of help

The Humane Society of Eastern NC was organized in 1989. Since that time we have provided assistance to NC animal owners, rescued animals in need, and assisted with the passage and enforcement of local and state laws. Our organization is very active in addressing situations involving animal cruelty and neglect. Most recently we worked with Pender County authorities to seize 28 mistreated dogs. Criminal charges are pending in that case. About 2 months ago, our asssistance was requested to seek help for a dog in Boiling Spring Lakes. This dog is kept at 223 Elm St. The dog has reportedly been deprived of necessary sustinence which is required by state and local law. Documented evidence established that this is an ongoing problem. According to reports this dog has been several days at a time without food or water. The dog also did not have any shelter until our complaints were filed with BSL. Jim Nicholas, Animal Control Supervisor stated the dog could get under the "porch". A porch does not provide legally adequate shelter for an animal. Shortly after the complaints were filed a dog house was built in the yard. Applicable state statutes concerning the dog are listed below. BSL is required to enforce the laws of the state of North Carolina. § 14‑360. Cruelty to animals; (a) (excerpt) If any person shall intentionally wound, injure, torment, kill, or deprive of necessary sustenance, or cause or procure to be wounded, injured, tormented, killed, or deprived of necessary sustenance, any animal, every such offender shall for every such offense be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. 14‑362.3. Restraining dogs in a cruel manner. A person who maliciously restrains a dog using a chain or wire grossly in excess of the size necessary to restrain the dog safely is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. The chain that this dog is attached is covered under the statues above. This dog is kept attached to an excessively heavy chain. The weight of the chain is probably equal to 20% of the dog's weight. That is equivalant to a 150 pound person carrying around a 30 pound chain. This heavy chain is unecessary, inhumane, and it violates state law. The Prices are aware of this fact due to a charge filed against Jesse G. Price in 2004 that involved the improper restraint of a dog with a chain. Additional problems for the dog are being caused by the chain being wrapped around the dog's neck and used as a collar. It is inhumane to use a heavy chain for a collar. After reviewing photos of the dog, a local veterinarian stated "the chain is excessively heavy. It is inhumane to restrain a dog in this manner. The end of the chain wrapped around the dogs neck cannot be classified as a collar." Information from Dogs Deserve Better about chaining dogs follows: New Hanover County has enacted a "No Tethering Ordinance." This stops the 24-7 chaining of dogs. Chaining is not only inhumane for dogs, but it has taken a severe toll on this nation’s children as well. In the period from October 2003 through August 2008, there were at least 240 children killed or seriously injured by chained dogs across the country. Chained dogs, unsocialized with humans, can become very territorial of their tiny space, and any two year old who wanders into this space can be attacked and killed before adults can intervene. A recent attack in Texas in March, 2007 left 2 year old Carolina Sotello dead from head and neck wounds. She was attacked and killed by an unneutered male dog chained in the backyard. FACT: Chaining and penning create aggression, not protection. A protective dog is used to being around people and can tell when his family is being threatened. Dogs learn to be protective when they spend time with and are loved by their human family and are "part of the pack." FACT: It is psychologically abusive to leave a dog on a chain 24-7. FACT: A Chained or penned dog can do nothing to stop an intruder! A chained or penned dog can only bark. Statistics show that one of the best deterrents to intruders is an inside dog. An intruder will think twice about entering a home with a dog on the other side of the door. ---------------------- At some point questions must be asked about the dog at 223 Elm St. Why do these people treat dogs like this? They know better. They are aware of the applicable laws. Do they deserve the priveledge of owning companion aniamls? Perhaps if the owner(s) wore the chain for a few days it would change their thinking. Another problem is the failure to provide a collar for the dog. This is a violation of the BSL animal ordinances. The BSL Ordinance requires that all dogs wear collars with current city tags and current rabies tags. The city manager David Lewis was unaware of the existence of this ordinance which is listed below. (BSL Ordinance Sec. 3-54. Wearing of collars, tags. Every dog and cat shall be required at all times to wear a collar to which has been affixed a rabies vaccination tag. Every dog shall have a city tax tag attached to the collar.) Ordinance detailing the duties of Jim Nicholas: Sec. 3-32. Same--Powers and duties. (a) The supervisor (Jim Nicholas) shall not have the power of arrest and (sic.shall) be responsible for the enforcement within the city of all state laws and local ordinances pertaining to the ownership and control of all animals and shall cooperate with all other law enforcement officers operating within the county in fulfilling this responsibility. City Tags: Sec. 3-52. Registration and fee.(excerpts) (a) All dogs kept within the city limits by residents shall be registered with the police department annually in January of each year. Upon registration, all dog owners will be provided a numbered tag by the police department. The tag shall be attached to the collar of the dog as evidence that the dog has been registered. The dog tag will only be issued if proof of rabies vaccination is provided at time of registration. (c) Violation of this section may subject the offender to penalties, both civil and criminal. The civil penalties have been established to cover the cost of enforcement of this section in accordance with section 1-15 of this ordinance. The civil penalty shall be as published in the fee schedule adopted by the board of commissioners and modified from time to time. When Jim Nicholas was asked why the dog did not have on a collar with a rabies tag, he stated "well I know Jesse Price has the tags. They are on a nail by the door." I asked Mr. Nicholas why the tags were not on a collar on the dog, he stated " I decided the tags don't have to be on the dog - case closed." Is that selective or preferential law enforcement? Why have Jim Nicholas, BSL Animal Control Supervisor and David Lewis, BSL City Manager refused to enforce the laws? Do they have state or city authorization to pick and choose which laws they enforce? Favoritism has no place in law enforcement. And by the way, do they have an "arrangement" with the Price's ? The mayor and the city council should immediately investigate the unacceptable behavior of these city employeess. The behavior of Nicholas and Lewis is a negative reflection on them and the city. Appropriate action should be undertaken to insure that the equitable enforcement of all state laws and all city ordinances is carried out. Citizens of BSL should demand immediate action. At present, the citizens of BSL cannot be certain that they are properly protected by their own government officals.

know what king of dog u have before u want to put it on a collar

ok put that type of dog on a collar i bet u in a couple of hours that dog will in her property and run her butt up a street u have to put a pit on a chain if not it will git loose then it will run after a person and lock there jaws on them all i have to say she need to know more that why the city not doing anythin they dont want any body to getting hurt

Blame the owner, not the dog

"u have to put a pit on a chain if not it will git loose then it will run after a person and lock there jaws on them" Only if the dog's owner is negligent and neglectful. Ignorant yahoos who leave their pitbulls on heavy chains are unlikely to provide any proper training. Read the December 29 issue of Sports Illustrated about the Michael Vick dogs if you want to see how good pits, even once-abused pits, can be.

David Lewis did not tell the truth!

The fact is, the city has an ordinance that states dogs shall have a collar with tags. According to Humane Society Eastern District President, Peter MacQueen, in a conversation with Lewis on 12/23, Lewis told MacQueen he knew of no such ordinance. MacQueen then handed a copy of the city ordinance to Lewis. So, Lewis does know of this and continues to do nothing! MacQueen further has documentation from a veterinarian that states a heavy chain like this should not be used around a dog's neck as it would wear not only hair off but skin also. It is a shame this story did not include the many code violations as to the property itself. The day before Pulliam went out to see the property Pulliam spoke to Lewis. When Pulliam got to the property the next day, not only was the dog gone but, a commode that had been sitting in the yard for months was gone. Coincidence? Hardly, the day after WWAY was gone, the dog is back. This time, no chain but not collar and/or tags. Another violation. BSL is a "tale of two cities", the have and the have not. As far as David Lewis and the city of Boiling Spring Lakes is concerned, Ms. Pinckney is a "have not"!