To the Editor:
I am writing in hopes of saving a beloved pet’s life. On July 3, we were devastated to learn our Parishville neighbor had shot and killed Blue, our devoted friend of nine years. Some people around town may remember him as the beautiful black lab who cheerfully greeted every customer (with kisses if allowed) from the now-closed Blues Market and Deli on Highway 56 in Potsdam.
I must admit that I share blame. You see, Monday evening, July 2, I got distracted after letting Blue out at 7 p.m. for his nightly break, which led to him traveling up County Route 47 about a mile from our home where he entered onto someone else’s property and was shot in the head. The story is as follows: after Blue ran off to explore, Animal Control Officer and dear friend Robert Phillips, my wife and myself searched ‘till past midnight for Blue until we finally had to call it a night and hope for the best. As related to me: at 1:30 a.m. Tuesday morning, a neighbor was awakened by his dog and saw Blue in his yard. Having lost a couple of ducks in the past, he turned his dog loose on Blue.
When Blue did not put up a fight, he called his dog off. Then, because Blue didn’t leave, he walked up, shot him in the head, and killed him. His reason was that he felt Blue posed a threat to his family.
My question is why did he think that? He stated that Blue did not put up a fight when his dog attacked him. Did it not occur to him that this beautiful well-groomed dog might be lost and belong to a family who dearly loved him, as I am sure this man loves his dog and ducks? Why did he feel the need to take Blue’s life when he clearly posted no threat? Why not call the Animal Control Officer and let him do his job?
The reason I know this killing was not justified is Blue did not have a mean or aggressive bone in his body. He was not a dog who would bark or growl, even when you wanted him to. However, he would allow any child to lead him around by the ear, or lay on him and use him as a pillow. He was a gentle soul.
In conclusion, we are hoping this letter will have a two-fold purpose. First, to remind everyone on the importance of keeping a close eye on your pets! And second, please, please, do not be so quick to pull that trigger. Once you do, there is no turning back.
Remember that most people think of their pets as their children and the loss is so very, very painful.
Bryan Vosburgh, Parishville