A Michigan woman is now pleading for her dog’s life to be spared following a May 18 incident that resulted in a safety officer being bitten. Surprisingly, dog owners around the world reportedly sympathize with the woman, but local law enforcement officials argue a different perspective. The unusual debate has sparked a heated debate because many viewers have expressed mixed reviews. However, there’s a number of details that have raised questions about who was really wrong in the situation.
According to MLive, Michigan resident Kristine A. Vanderberg was forced to relinquish her boxer-pit bull mix to the Bay County Animal Control on Friday, May 22. It has been reported that the dog — affectionately known as Sarge — was taken from Vanderberg after he bit a Bay City public safety officer at Vanderberg’s home.
According to Opposing Views, one of Vanderberg’s neighbors contacted the police department regarding an earlier dispute. When officers arrived at her home, she stated that she was taking a nap and did not hear the officer knock. When she didn’t answer, the officer walked around to the back of the house and entered the backyard where he met by Sarge. Of course, the dog reacted accordingly upon seeing a stranger in his backyard. That’s when he bit the officer, reports Filming Cops.
“People can’t just walk in, especially men,” Kristine said.
“He’s very protective of me. My 1-year-old son and I come over, and he just licks our faces,” said Kristine’s son, Justin, adding “He just doesn’t like people he doesn’t know.”
Although some have argued that the dog was only defending his territory, unfortunately, prosecutors are arguing that this isn’t Sarge’s first time biting someone. In fact, this is reportedly his third time biting someone and the most recent officer is actually the second to be bitten by the dog. However, all three people reportedly entered Vanderberg’s yard without permission and none have suffered serious injuries.
Now, Bay County prosecutors are demanding that Sarge “be destroyed.” But, many dog owners have voiced their concerns and arguments about the Bay County prosecutors’ demands. Initial reports about Sarge’s dire situation quickly caught the attention of hundreds of readers.
Surprisingly, Vanderberg has received overwhelming support from those who sympathize with her. Since the dog was in her yard and attacked three people who did not have permission to be in the yard, many supporters simply cannot understand how the dog could even be taken from her, let alone be facing euthanasia for his actions. There’s even a Facebook page in support of Sarge called “Save Sarge From Death Row – Bay City, MI.”
Needless to say, Vanderberg is quite pleased to know so many people care whether her dog lives or dies. In less than a week, the Facebook page has attracted more than 1,900 supporters.
“It’s amazing how many people are sharing (Sarge’s story), people I don’t even know,” Vanderberg said on June 15. “I’m overwhelmed with the outreach everyone has done for me. There’s just so many people helping.”
There’s also a petition in place via Change.org called “Save Sarge From Death Row.” The petition already has 928 of the 1,000 signature goal and online fundraisers have also been created to support Vanderberg’s cause.
So, with all of the support, how does it ultimately help Sarge? For now, Vanderberg is still unsure of his fate but she’s definitely hoping for the best.
“I’m trying to be optimistic,” Vanderberg said. “I’m thinking things are going to start moving in the right direction.”
A hearing is reportedly scheduled for July 2. Sarge’s fate will be left in the hands of Bay County District Judge Dawn A. Klida.
Do you think Sarge’s life should be spared? Or was the officer wrong for entering the backyard? Share your thoughts.
[Image(s) via Facebook]