Petitions: Prosecute man who Killed Cat with BOW for fun in Australia!

You might be thinking, who the hell hunts cats or dogs? Well, just yesterday I received a comment from someone who started off, “I already ate a dog, I love dog fights, blood,…” etc., etc., blah blah blah.

There are plenty of psychopaths out there; it’s up to us to put laws in place to keep them in their place (hell preferably).

Please sign these two petitions for domestic animals, one against cat hunting and one on to  Prevent cruelty to dogs and cats in China:


Prosecute Australian man that KILLS Cats with BOWS AND ARROWS! Sign here for justice:
Petition text: Tyler Atkinson form Ballarat, Victoria in Australia boasts online and in hunting forums about killing cats with his prized possession, a professional hunting bow. He even posted pictures of his deeds, a good thing because we can use it as evidence!He said: “Got my first feral cat this morning.Called him into about 3 meters after spotting him sniffing around about 50 meters away, and put a supreme on track and he was mine inside 6m”We urge the Chief Police Commissioner to start an investigation and prevent any other innocent animals from being killed by this man. – See more at:


Beloved pets also lost, displaced by mudslide

[Only now, after the human death toll has been tallied up, do we hear about the no-human casualties of the Oso slide.]


By MANUEL VALDES, Associated Press Published: Mar 31, 2014
DARRINGTON, Wash. (AP) – After a rescue worker called her animal clinic saying dogs had been extracted from the destruction left behind by a massive mudslide, veterinary assistant Cassna Wemple and her colleagues raced to this small Washington town near the debris field.

They found one of the dogs at the fire station among a flurry of rescue workers and townspeople. Bonnie, an Australian shepherd, was wrapped in a comforter. She was muddy and had a broken leg in a splint. One of Bonnie’s owners had just died in the slide. The other had been pulled out.

“She was just very much in shock,” Wemple said.

In this rural community north of Seattle, Wemple said it’s common for residents to have plenty of animals, including pigs, horses, rabbits, chickens, dogs and cats. When the deadly slide struck March 22, beloved pets and livestock also perished.

The full number of pets and livestock killed may never be known. Authorities also don’t have a clear number of how many pets are missing or displaced by the slide, incident spokespeople have said. There are at least 37 horses displaced and at least 10 dogs that were missing, according to different animal services helping the recovery efforts.

“To know that their animals are lost and may or may not be found. It’s heartbreaking. It’s heartbreaking for the people and the animals,” said Dee Cordell of the Everett Animal Services.

Wemple said rescue workers could hear horses crying from the debris hours after the slide, but because of the unsafe conditions, rescuers couldn’t go in.

For those animals that survived, the community and outsiders have rallied in support with donations. Bag after bag of food for dogs, cats and chickens have filled up the rodeo grounds outside Darrington, which are serving as a makeshift shelter. At last count, it totaled nearly 45,000 pounds. On Saturday alone, 27 tons of donated food from Purina arrived.

Lilianna Andrews’s seven horses are now at the rodeo grounds. Their house wasn’t buried in the mud, but the displaced earth formed a dam, backing up the Stillaguamish River into a lake that rose waist-high in the house and as high as 10 feet in the barn.

“We got them out before they got any water on them,” the 13-year-old said after helping unload hay at the rodeo grounds on Saturday. “But they would have drowned. So we just had to evacuate them from the water, and they’ve been staying here ever since.”

The Andrews were in Seattle when a friend called to check on their whereabouts. When they realized it wasn’t just a small mudslide blocking the road, they hurried home. Their dog, cats and chickens are fine too, Andrews said, although they haven’t been able to get in to feed the chickens.

Volunteers are also tending to 20 horses that belonged to Summer Raffo, a farrier who died in the slide.

Wemple’s clinic, Chuckanut Valley Veterinary, treated three dogs hurt from the slide. One of those dogs, named Blue, had to have one of his legs amputated last week. His owner is still hospitalized. The owner’s daughter has visited the dog daily.

“He’ll be happier in the long run. No more pain in that leg,” Wemple said.

Bonnie’s owner was Linda McPherson, a retired librarian. She was in her living room reading newspapers with her husband, Gary “Mac” McPherson, when the slide hit. She died. He lived. Bonnie has been kept at the clinic for rehabilitation. At night, one of the staffers takes her home.

A memorial is planned for next week for Linda McPherson. Wemple said the staffer will bring the Australian shepherd to the memorial for a reunion with her surviving owner.


Associated Press writer Jonathan J. Cooper contributed to this report.

Update: Man whose malamute was killed seeks legal fix

by Rob Chaney

Layne Spence still brings his two malamute dogs, Rex and Frank, to run along the Clark Fork River in Missoula, but he’s not ready to take them back into the woods.

“This is where I let them run around,” Spence said on a winter afternoon near the Higgins Avenue Bridge. “You can tell they need to run. But we were out on the Kim Williams Trail where they were doing some work, and when somebody used a nail gun, the dogs just freaked out.”

On Nov. 17, a hunter shot and killed Spence’s third malamute, Little Dave, on the road above Lee Creek Campground near Lolo Pass. Spence was cross-country skiing with Little Dave, Rex and Frank a few hundred yards from the road gate when he heard gunshots and saw the dog get hit. Spence said he screamed for the man to stop, but the shooting continued.

The hunter approached Spence and said he mistook Little Dave for a wolf. All three pet dogs were wearing lighted collars. The incident took place in the middle of Montana’s hunting season, but on a closed road popular for winter recreation.

Spence reported the incident to the Missoula County Sheriff’s Department, which determined it had no basis for further investigation. There is no state law making it a criminal act to accidentally kill someone’s domestic pet.

The sheriff’s office also sent details to the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks and the U.S. Forest Service. Both agencies found no legal basis to charge the hunter with a crime.

Several days after the incident became public, the hunter appeared at the sheriff’s department. After an interview, officials reconfirmed their previous position – no law was broken. They did not release the man’s identity or further details of the interview.

Still, Spence wants justice.

“I’m not going to let it go,” Spence said. “I’ve seen the sheriff’s report, but I’m not supposed to talk about it. I’m leaving it in my lawyer’s hands.”

Spence has also talked with state Rep. Ellie Boldman Hill, D-Missoula. Hill said she’s working on legislation that could address the matter.

“If he (the hunter) would have shot an elk on accident, there would have been immediate liability,” Hill said. “But because he shot somebody’s pet, there isn’t a space in the law that fits. With domesticated pets, there’s a loophole in the law. We’ve heard from Montana Hunters and Anglers and the Montana Wildlife Federation they want that loophole fixed as well.”

Hill said she’ll be working with the Montana Prosecuting Attorneys Association on a couple of possible angles. One could be modifying the state’s cruelty to animals law, which now doesn’t apply to accidents. Another avenue might be to put more onus on hunters to know their target by putting pets on the same threshold as other poached wildlife.

Despite several offers, Spence said he will not get another dog to replace Little Dave. And while he’s also had offers for financial help in a lawsuit against either the hunter or law enforcement agencies, he said he wanted the effort to be directed at preventing future tragedies.

“I don’t want attention on me,” Spence said. “I want it on my dog, so this doesn’t happen to someone else. When I said this was like losing one of my kids, someone commented I should know what it’s like to actually lose a child. Well, I do. My daughter was killed by a drunk driver in 1987.”

Layne Spence's Malamutes Rex and Frank sit waiting and watching over Little Dave, front, who was killed by a hunter with an assault rifle

Layne Spence’s Malamutes Rex and Frank sit waiting and watching over Little Dave, front, who was killed by a hunter with an assault rifle

2 Wolves Were Killed By Hunters Using Dogs This Week

December 06, 2013

By Chuck Quirmbach

The Department of Natural Resources reports that two grey wolves killed in Wisconsin this week were shot by hunters who used dogs to pursue the wolves.

The wolf deaths happened in Rusk and Washburn counties. The DNR’s Dave MacFarland says hunters registered the wolf kills by phone. MacFarland says it may take a while to learn more details about how the dogs were used during the wolf harvest.

“The hunters are required by the fifth day of the month after harvest – so for these animals, that would be Jan. 5 – to organize a registration meeting with one of the wardens,” says MacFarland. “So the warden registration component of the registration process has not yet occurred for these animals.”

MacFarland says most of the discussions between wolf hunters and DNR wardens happen fairly quickly.

Rachel Tilseth of the animal protection group Wolves of Douglas County says she’d like to hear more details of this week’s wolf deaths, and hear soon.

“I would like to see more wardens out there,” says Tilseth. “I would like to know how many wardens were out there, and I haven’t heard anything on that. Once I find that out, I would like to know if the dogs chewed up the wolf. I want to know the condition of the animal.”

The DNR says it remains committed to enforcing state law, which only allows hunters to use dogs to track the wolves, not fight with them. The DNR says wolf hunters are now 32 short of this season’s quota. The only remaining wolf hunt zone is one in northwest Wisconsin.


Dogs Enter Wisconsin Wolf Hunt Monday

by Susan Bence

Wisconsin’s second wolf hunt reaches a turning point December 2. Licensed hunters can now use up to six dogs to help track wolves. Wisconsin is the only state to allow the practice. Some celebrate the rules and others take to court.

Lucas Withrow started hunting with his dad years ago. Hunting with dogs runs deep in their family tradition. Today, Withrow raises and trains more than a dozen dogs on his property in Brodhead.

“I have a kennel of 15 hounds. Three or four dogs that I use on coyotes, and that’s all I run them on and the rest are pretty much a mix of bear and coon hounds. “

Hunting bear is Withrow’s passion.

Eight years ago, he joined the Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association and now represents the group on the DNR’s wolf advisory committee. Withrow says dogs will serve a valuable function in helping manage the state’s wolf population.

“The function would be to make sure that we use and utilize all opportunities to harvest the quotas that we are responsible for harvesting to help keep the population stable and healthy,” and Withrow adds, “it’s something else that we can enjoy with our dogs.”

Withrow rebuts criticism that the practice subjects dogs to potential violent injury or death.

“From my perspective, I would tell you a dog introduced into the woods with the intention of chasing of wolf, that’s part of the responsibility of assuming the hunt. When you assume the responsibility for pursuing the wolf, you assume the responsibility for what can happen.”

“Allowing dogs to get torn up by wolves for the enjoyment of their owners, seeking to pursue wolves in this fashion, violates animal cruelty law,” Jodi Habush Sinykin says.

She is a Milwaukee attorney and represents a collection of humane societies, conservation groups and what she calls, “mainstream hunters.” She successfully took the issue to court. Sinykin argued that the DNR failed to write rules to protect hounds used in hunting wolves.

At least during Wisconsin’s inaugural wolf hunt in 2012 – a judge issued an injunction against the use of dogs. The lawsuit now rests in the hands of the state court of appeals. Sinykin has been awaiting a decision for weeks.

“Without intervention from the Court of Appeals starting December 2, dogs will be used by their owners with the known risks of what transpires when dogs who are unleashed and unprotected and at significant distances from their handlers encroach on wolf territory,” explains Sinykin. “And as we know from 25 years of depredation payments is that dogs are maimed and killed by wolves.”

For those years, hunting wolves was illegal in Wisconsin because their numbers were scarce. During that time, if a wolf killed a dog, the state reimbursed the owner.

Now that wolves have shifted to ‘hunt and trap status’, the state will not compensate hunters, if their hounds are killed during the chase.

We may not find out how many dogs are killed during the hunt. The DNR wants hunters to report dog casualties, but they are not required to do so.

The season will end on February 28 or when hunters take the state quota of 251.

copyrighted wolf in river

New Article: Outdoorsman seeks action after pet malamute shot, killed by wolf hunter

Nov. 21, 2013

Layne Spence's pet malamute, Little Dave.

Layne Spence’s pet malamute, Little Dave.

Here’s the Great Falls Tribune article in its entirety:

Written by John S. Adams

Tribune Capital Bureau

HELENA –  Layne Spence went out into the woods west of Missoula on a Sunday afternoon to do what he loves to do best: recreate in Montana’s outdoors with his three beloved malamutes.

Spence, an avid outdoorsman, drove to the Lolo National Forest’s Lee Creek campground, an area the agency touts on its website for its “winter recreation opportunities such as cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.”

The area also is popular with hunters and trappers.

Spence parked his truck, turned on his dogs’ lighted collars, clipped into his cross-country skis and set off down the snow-covered forest road.

Within minutes of starting out on his trek with his dogs Rex, Frank and Little Dave, Spence said he heard a gunshot from up ahead. Spence said he looked up from road just as Little Dave’s hind leg was struck by a bullet. Spence said a man, dressed mostly in camouflage, was standing on the road approximately 30 yards ahead of him and was aiming a semiautomatic assault rifle in his direction.

Merriam-Webster defines an assault rifle as “any of various automatic or semiautomatic rifles with large capacity magazines designed for military use.”

“I started screaming at the top of my lungs, ‘No! No! Stop! Stop! You’re shooting my dog!,” Spence recalled, his voice still hoarse from yelling three days after the alleged incident.

Spence, a licensed emergency medical responder, said even though his dog was gravely wounded, he thought he had a chance to save him after the first shot. Even with a missing leg, Little Dave could live a full and happy life, Spence said later.

“I started running toward Little Dave, screaming the whole time and then I heard this ‘tat, tat, tat’ five or six more times,” Spence said. “Then Little Dave’s head just tilted over and he was dead.”

As Spence huddled over the body of his dead pet, the unidentified shooter approached him and told Spence he thought the dog was a wolf. According to Spence, the man asked if there was anything he could do. Spence he was distraught and screamed at the man to leave him alone.

“I was sitting there screaming, I was covered in blood, and I was trying to find my dog’s leg,” Spence recalled.

Spence said any responsible wolf hunter should have known his domestic dogs aren’t wolves. Spence said Little Dave bears a resemblance to the Ewok characters from the “Star Wars” films.

Local law enforcement authorities, state wildlife officials and U.S. Forest Service officials announced Tuesday that they spoke to the hunter involved in the incident.

According to a joint statement issued by the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office, the hunter broke no criminal or wildlife laws in the incident. Authorities said they are withholding the man’s name for his own safety.

“Based on the statements provided by both parties, it was determined that there was no malicious or purposeful intent to cause harm or injury to a domesticated animal on behalf of the hunter,” the statement read. “The Missoula County Attorney’s Office concurs with the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office that the facts of the incident do not fit the elements of any criminal statutes contained in Montana law …”

The Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks said the circumstances do not “constitute any egregious violation of Montana hunting regulations.”

“The incident was not enforceable by their agency because it involved a domesticated animal, rather than a game animal,” the statement read.

Debate ignites

Although authorities say no laws were broken, widespread news of the incident has outraged many outdoor enthusiasts and sparked debate over who is responsible for the safety of the nonhunting public and their pets on public lands during open hunting seasons.

Wolf hunting and trapping is legal in Montana, and so far 85 wolves have been killed during Montana’s 2013-2014 hunting and trapping season.

Hunters can hunt wolves with guns from Sept. 15 to March 15, and trapping runs from Dec. 15 to Feb. 28. Wolf hunters are only required to wear “hunter orange” during the five-week general rifle season. After Dec. 1, they can hunt until mid-March without wearing orange.

Matthew Koehler, executive director of the Missoula-based WildWest Institute, said as an environmentalist and a big-game hunter, he is deeply troubled by the reported actions of the hunter who allegedly shot Spence’s dog.

Koehler said state wildlife and law enforcement officials appear to be applying a different set of rules for wolf hunters than other big-game hunters.

“The first rule for any ethical hunter is to know your target,” Koehler said. “If FWP or law enforcement found out a hunter mistakenly shot a bull elk when the regulations only allowed the taking of antlerless elk, they would fine the hunter and perhaps even take away his license. It blows me away that in this case, authorities are apparently saying it’s OK for wolf hunters to shoot people’s pets on public lands and there are no consequences for those actions.”

Jerry Black is an anti-wolf hunting advocate who said Montana’s liberal wolf hunting laws put unreasonable onus on unarmed citizens to protect themselves and their pets from injury or death while recreating on public lands.

“What’s screwed up is this tragic incident shows that we as citizens out walking with our dogs, or out there hiking, fishing or skiing on public lands, it’s now our responsibility to not get shot,” Black said. “For six months out of the year, we’re under siege by wolf hunters who say it’s our responsibility to wear blaze orange.”

Changes coming?

Spence said he believes the man who shot Little Dave should lose his hunting privileges and have his guns taken away.

Spence said  the hunter violated hunting regulations, including shooting from a public roadway.

According to the 2013-2014 Montana wolf-hunting regulations, “it is illegal for anyone to hunt or attempt to hunt any wolf from, on or across any public highway or the shoulder, berm, barrow pit or right-of-way of any public highway …”

“I don’t want anything bad to happen to the guy. I just want an apology,” Spence said. “He has to be held accountable. I’m lucky to be alive. He was shooting right at me.”

Spence said he believes there needs to be stiff penalties on the books for hunters who endanger nonhunters or their pets through irresponsible actions. He said he hopes if anything good comes from the death of Little Dave, it will prevent future incidents like this from occurring.

“It could have happened to anyone. I could have had a child out there with me,” Spence said. “People need to be aware. I don’t want this to happen to anybody else.”

One state lawmaker is already talking about taking action in the 2015 Legislature.

Rep. Ellie Boldman Hill, D-Missoula, said on her Facebook page that she is considering proposing legislation making what happened on Sunday a crime. Hill is up for re-election in 2014.

Spence said he’s not opposed to hunting and has hunted in the past. However, Spence said he believes the use of a semiautomatic rifles should not be allowed for hunting.

Semiautomatic rifles are legal in Montana and no special permit is required to own them or hunt with them.

“Everybody has their Second Amendment right to bear arms, but irresponsibility and those kinds of weapons that allow you to fire off a bunch of rounds with a few quick squeezes of the trigger should be banned,” Spence said. “Assault weapons are not hunting rifles.”

The Way

Having spent the better part of the last four days getting our winter’s firewood in and under cover, my wife and I are now looking forward to the season of longer nights and cozy fires. In honor of all that, here’s something I wrote while on a solo hike in the North Cascades National Park, camped outside an old miner’s cabin…


by Jim Robertson, circa June, 1979

There’ll be a big fire a-blazing soon
and if you’ve got the time I’d like you to
come on in and share the warmth with me.

I might not be the most social guy,
but when friends come ‘round
I like to try to show them a good time
the way it used to be.

I’d trade skiing stories with the boys out back,
while in the kitchen the women’ll yackity-yack
and we’ll get together when supper’s good and baked.

And afterwards we’ll all sit ‘round
and watch the fire as we’re burning out,
and the snoring dog will keep us entertained.

I got no TV,
no video games,
but my big stone fireplace
should take the place,
if you appreciate the way it used to be.

So if you’re all alone on this windy night,
come on in and share the light
and the warmth from the fire
the way it used to be.

Text and Photography ©Jim Robertson, 2013. All Rights Reserved

Text and Photography ©Jim Robertson, 2013. All Rights Reserved

And We Call Ourselves Civilized?

In agreeing with President Obama’s plan to strike Syria, Representative Nancy Pelosi was quoted as saying we must respond to actions “outside the circle of civilized human behavior.” Nice to hear that the U.S. Government thinks it has the moral authority to respond to such actions. While they’re at it, I can think of a whole lot of other actions which should be considered “outside the circle of civilized human behavior” that are desperately in need of responding to.

I’m referring, of course, to the innumerable abuses of non-human animals by humans—many that go on every day right here in the U.S. of A. I’m afraid if I were to try to list all the instances of human mistreatment of other animals which should fall outside the “circle of civilized human behavior,” the pages would fill the halls of justice, spill out onto the streets and overflow the banks of Potomac River in an unending tsunami of savagery.

So here’s just a partial list…

Wolf Hunting—No sooner did grey wolves begin to make a comeback in the Lower 48 than did the feds jerk the rug out from under them by lifting their endangered species protections and casting their fate into the clutches of hostile states. Now, hunters in Wyoming have a year-round season on them while anti-wolf fanatics in Montana have quadrupled their per person yearly kill quota.

Trapping—Only the creepiest arachnid would leave a victim suffering and struggling for days until it suits them to come along for the “harvest.” Yet “law abiding trappers” routinely leave highly sentient, social animals clamped by the foot and chained to a log to endlessly await their fate.

Hound-Hunting—“Sportsmen” not content to shoot unsuspecting prey from a distance of a hundred yards or more sometimes use hounds to make their blood-sport even more outrageously one-sided.

Bowhunting—Those who want to add a bit of challenge to their unnecessary kill-fest like to try their luck at archery. Though they often go home empty-handed, they can always boast about the “ones that got away”… with arrows painfully stuck in them.

Contest Hunts—Prairie dogs, coyotes, and in Canada, wolves, are among the noble, intelligent animals that ignoble dimwits are allowed to massacre during bloody tournaments reminiscent of the bestial Roman Games.

Horse Slaughter—After all that our equine friends have done for us over the centuries, the administration sees fit to send them in cattle trucks to those nightmarish death-camps where so many other forcibly domesticated herbivores meet their tragic ends.

Factory farming—Whether cows, sheep, pigs, chickens or turkeys, the conditions animals are forced to withstand on modern day factory farms fall well outside even the narrowest circle of civilized human compassion. To call their situations overcrowded, inhumane or unnatural does not do justice to the fiendish cruelty that farmed animals endure each and every day of their lives.

Atrocious conditions are not confined to this continent. Chickens in China (the ancestral home of some new strain of bird flu just about every other week) are treated worse than inanimate objects. Bears, rhinoceros and any other animal whose body parts are said to have properties that will harden the wieners of hard-hearted humans are hunted like there’s no tomorrow. And let’s not forget the South Korean dog and cat slaughter, or Japan’s annual dolphin round up…

Far be it from me to belittle the use of chemical weapons—my Grandfather received a purple heart after the Germans dropped mustard gas on his foxhole during World War One. I just feel that if we’re considering responding to actions “outside the circle of civilized human behavior,” we might want to strike a few targets closer to home as well. Or better yet, reign in some of our own ill-behaviors so we can justifiably call ourselves “civilized.”

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson, 2013. All Rights Reserved

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson, 2013. All Rights Reserved

Timely Quotes on Dog and God and Death and Shit

I watched the movie The Unbearable Lightness of Being last night, hoping it included this classic quote found in the original novel by Milan Kundera…

“True human goodness, in all its purity and freedom, can come to the fore only when its recipient has no power. Mankind’s true moral test, its fundamental test (which is deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals.”   

Unfortunately, the film version, while still a great flick throughout its 3-hour running time, did not make room for that or these other timely quotes (also found in the book) about dog and god and death and shit, which (aside from shit) have been the topics of some of my recent posts (my emphasis add in bold)…

“Dogs do not have many advantages over people, but one of them is extremely important: euthanasia is not forbidden by law in their case; animals have the right to a merciful death.”

“The very beginning of Genesis tells us that God created man in order to give him dominion over fish and fowl and all creatures. Of course, Genesis was written by a man, not a horse. There is no certainty that God actually did grant man dominion over other creatures. What seems more likely, in fact, is that man invented God to sanctify the dominion that he had usurped for himself over the cow and the horse.”

“…Nietzsche leaving his hotel in Turin. Seeing a horse and a coachman beating it with a whip, Nietzsche went up to the horse and, before the coachman’s very eyes, put his arms around the horse’s neck and burst into tears.

“That took place in 1889, when Nietzsche, too, had removed himself from the world of people. In other words, it was at the time when his mental illness had just erupted. But for that very reason I feel his gesture has broad implications: Nietzsche was trying to apologize to the horse of Descartes. His lunacy (that is, his final break with mankind) began at the very moment he burst into tears over the horse.”

“Spontaneously, without any theological training, I, a child, grasped the incompatibility of God and shit…either man was created in God’s image – and has intestines! – or God lacks intestines and man is not like him.

“The ancient Gnostics felt as I did at the age of five. In the second century, the Great Gnostic master Valentinus resolved the damnable dilemma by claiming that Jesus “ate and drank, but did not defecate.

Shit is a more onerous theological problem than is evil. Since God gave man freedom, we can, if need be, accept the idea that He is not responsible for man’s crimes. The responsibility for shit, however, rests entirely with Him, the creator of man.”

“The river flowed from century to century, and human affairs play themselves out on its banks. Play themselves out to be forgotten the next day, while the river flows on.” ―  Milan KunderaThe Unbearable Lightness of Being