Animal-rights activists say public outcry has given a dog named Buddy another reprieve. But a local group is planning to work to bring about more awareness to state law that they say is too broad.
In a case that’s come to be known as "Buddy the Dog," the Golden Retriever’s owners are seeking a permanent resolution to keep him from being euthanized.
Municipal Court Judge Daniel Guerrero in December ordered that Buddy be put down after a November incident in which the dog was accused of attacking a little girl. The child reportedly needed 100 stitches and surgery to repair her eye. But the pet’s owners hold that Buddy was provoked and that the child’s injuries were not serious.
Local animal-rights advocate Vicki Jurney-Taylor organized a rally for Saturday morning to bring more attention what she said is a rubber stamp for euthanasia.
"We shall continue our campaign to make city leaders realize that it appears that every case that goes before Judge Guerrero results in a pet being euthanized," said spokeswoman Kathy Ames.
The City said in a statement Friday said that Animal Care Services is continuing to work with all parties to resolve the case. ACS officials told TPR that there were 4,571 dog bite cases logged in 2013, but only three rose to the level of serious bodily injury.
As for Buddy's case, attorneys for his owners got an Exparte TRO -- a temporary restraining order -- that is keeping the dog alive until appeals run through the courts.
On Thursday, Animal Care Services released Buddy to his veterinarian, but the case isn’t over yet. The family is hoping for a permanent resolution with the city that will rescind the euthanasia order.
The Texas Health and Safety Code language specifies that even a provoked dog on a leash can be euthanized if the attack is severe.
Attorney Michelle Maloney, who represents the dog’s owners, is scheduled to speak at the event to raise awareness of the state law and to start a process to get the law changed.