New Bedford, Fairhaven and Wareham COAs on Salisbury dog ​​shooting


One of the most unfortunate stories to surface concerns the death of two animals in the town of Salisbury, Massachusetts: one is a duck and the other is a blue-eyed dog.

The duck, on his property, was killed by an unrestrained dog and then the dog was allegedly shot and killed by the duck’s owner after repeated warnings he gave to the dog’s owner.

This is causing a lot of controversy in Salisbury, but luckily this is not a situation that has happened on the south coast, at least according to a few local animal control officers.

Fairhaven Animal Control Officer: “See Beyond”

“Oh my God, that’s way over the top,” said Fairhaven animal control officer Terry Cripps. “In a situation as horrible as this, there are no winners.”

Cripps said he had never encountered such a situation.

“To my knowledge, nothing like this has happened here in Fairhaven,” he said. “If I remember correctly, a few years ago there was a really sad case where a man from Lakeville was cleared of malicious murder after he shot his neighbor’s golden-haired retriever. But what is legal and what is morally right are two different things.”

Wareham Department of Natural Resources: ‘It didn’t happen here’

Michael McGuire of the Wareham Department of Natural Resources said the law allowing the duck owner to shoot the dog has been around for a long time, but he too has not seen anyone do anything similar.

“That didn’t happen here,” he said.

Like Cripps, McGuire has had cases of dogs attacking chickens.

“Yes, the dogs killed chickens here, but it never got to the point of putting the dog down because of it,” he said.

Did it happen in New Bedford?

“No, not since I’ve been here,” said New Bedford animal control officer Manny Maciel. “We have a restraint law here that violates leaving a dog off-leash, and the owner must maintain control of their dog at all times. All it takes is a squirrel to run and your dog running away, (and) you’re automatically at fault because of the leash law.”

What happens if someone breaks the leash law?

“We fine offenders and will take them to court if they don’t pay the citation,” Maciel said. “What happens to people who have not paid their fine is that a warrant for your arrest is issued, and if you are ever arrested, the police will take you to jail.”

Maciel said the leash law prevented such tragedies from happening.

“I take my job seriously and I always enforce the law,” Maciel said. “If I didn’t, then traumatic cases like what happened with the dog being shot would happen more often. It was the responsibility of the dog’s owner to keep control over him at all times. If the owner had done just that, both animals would be alive today.”

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