A two year old pit bull mix, and a twelve-pound, five month old, bull terrier puppy rush to a waist-high retaining wall, barking at a pair of police officers who were knocking at their door to do a probation check on their owner. One of the officers pepper sprays the puppy, and then pulls out his gun, and shoots her. A twelve-pound puppy. This has got to be a joke, right?
Sadly, it's not. Within the past two weeks, there have been two incidents in which police officers have shot at, and killed, a bull breed dog on its own property, in front of its owner and other witnesses. Two incidents in which the owners had no idea officers were coming to visit, and who had woken up that day as if it were any other day. I can't even comprehend what happened in either situation.
I'm not one to jump on the paranoid wagon, but please, bring your dog inside if you're not there to supervise. And, if the police knock on your door, don't assume they're going to be friendly to your dog. In general, if they want to enter your house, they need to knock, and announce who they are. Then, they're supposed to wait a reasonable time (or be refused entrance) before they can do anything else. So, if they come to your door, please put your dog away before you open that door. Without commenting on whether or not police officers are truly justified in shooting a pet because they felt threatened, suffice it to say that officers are granted great leeway in the eyes of the law as to whether their actions were "reasonable" depending on the circumstances. In these situations, oftentimes the only evidence you'll have is your word against theirs. I'm sure that we'd all prefer not to even get to that point. So please, as a matter of precaution, put your dogs safely away when you're not around, and before you open the door to any potential non-dog friendly strangers.
Our hearts go out to both Mr. Yishay and Mr. Locatelli.