Animal control posts pet photos, plans vaccination clinic
Like FBI wanted posters, mug shots of stray pets rounded up in Bernalillo are being posted at town hall.
Animal-control officer Bernadette Romero takes the photos and prints the posters in hopes of uniting pet and person. No reunions occurred during the first few days after the project began late in July, she said.
The town animal-services department also is coordinating a vaccination clinic scheduled for Saturday, August 21, from 9:30 a.m. to noon. The clinic, staged at Sandia Creature Comforts, 733 Camino del Pueblo, will be handled by Roadrunner Mobile Veterinary Services, Romero said.
Cat shots cost $13.50 and dog shots $14.50, with additional fees for any tests.
Also on Saturday, August 21, they are partnering with Animal Humane Association and will host an adopt-a-dog event at the store. Potential adopters can meet dogs large and small from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
The morning dog walk in Sundance Mesa, Placitas
Baxter, a bichon frise, peeks out from behind a tumbleweed
“Good morning, Katie.” “Good morning, Ellie.” “Good morning, Willow.” “Good morning, Charlie.” “Good morning, Baxter.”
It’s 7:30 a.m. on Second Mesa Drive in the Sundance Mesa Subdivision of Placitas. Everyone is properly greeted—everyone being the dogs. Every morning Second Mesa Drive is commandeered by a group of dogs and their people. Residents and building contractors drive with care and surrender the right-of-way to the motley crew.
Ellie, a West Highland white terrier, assures her leader-of-the-pack status by getting out front and staying there (until she comes upon the chamisa where she spotted a rabbit months ago and has to stop and check to see if it might still be there). Katie, a Yorkshire terrier, has energy to burn and runs circles around the group, literally, tangling her leash around all people and dogs in her wake. Charlie, a Maltese and the littlest in the pack, trots daintily behind attempting to avoid Katie and anything else that might disrupt her genteel stroll through her neighborhood. Willow, a German shepherd, tries valiantly to keep them all together and allows the little ones to feel the power of a brief and safe wrestle with a big dog.
In the group picture above, left to right, are Deb Pascuzzi and Willow, Bobbi Swan and Ellie, Marge Drevs and Katie, and Nancy Blankenship and Charlie. Missing from the picture are the picture taker, Adrienne Kleiman, and her bichon frise, Baxter. When he moved here from Los Angeles six months ago, Baxter would hide under the bed to avoid having to socialize, but the group therapy every morning has paid off and you can find him on the walk most mornings.
The morning social walk is soul food for human and dog alike and just one of the many things that make Sundance Mesa a great place to live.
Trapping continues in New Mexico
—Richard “Bugman” Fagerlund and Holly Kern
You are walking your dog in the foothills of the Sandia Mountains. Your pet sniffs the air, detects a mouth-watering scent, and wanders off in search of the prize. The aroma didn't come from any benevolent source; it was bait used in a Conibear trap that was set out to catch a raccoon. Your companion animal is caught by the head and you cannot release her before she suffocates in your arms. This has happened and will happen again if trapping on public land is allowed to continue.
Trapping, while perfectly legal in many parts of the country, is a vulgar activity. The traps cause unbelievable suffering, including ripped flesh, broken bones, crushed pelvises, swelling, and blood loss. The most insidious traps are the steel-jawed leghold traps, which many people believe have been banned.
Eight states (Washington, California, Massachusetts, Colorado, Arizona, New Jersey, Florida, and Rhode Island) have banned the use of leghold traps, but New Mexico, of course, is not one of them. It is unconscionable that less than 1 percent of the population traps and approximately 75 percent of the population opposes trapping, yet this barbarism is still legal.
The only justification for trapping animals is to skin them, process the skin, and then make it into coats and stoles for narcissistic little twits to wear when they go out on Saturday night. All of the fur coats in the world are not worth the bone-wrenching screams of a single animal caught in these mindless traps.
Trappers can kill and skin a coyote and sell the hide for $2. What do they do with coyote skins? Have you ever seen anyone walking around wearing a coyote coat? They can sell skunk and raccoon skins for about $5, but they will get close to $30 for a bobcat kitten. Who on earth would want to wear the skins of kittens?
Many trappers admittedly don't trap for the money, because it isn't a moneymaking business. They do it for fun. They capture, mangle, mutilate, kill, and skin animals for fun.
The National Trappers Association is trying to defend its insidious activity of trapping on public land and it is lobbying various state agencies to allow this to go on. They are using a number of vacuous arguments.
They contend that leghold traps are humane. This is patently absurd, as leghold traps are extremely inhumane. Research on this subject shows that it is true that newer padded traps cause less injury than unpadded ones when they close. However, injuries can be divided into two parts. One is when the trap closes, the other is the aftermath as the animal struggles against it. In the latter situation, padded traps still result in muscle, ligament, tendon, and nerve injuries, along with broken teeth, as the animal bites the steel. Even if the case can be made that padded traps are more humane, only a tiny fraction of trappers own and use these traps.
Trappers like to lump themselves in with hunters because they know that without the hunters, they cannot win. But hunting is fundamentally different from trapping.
The hunter must be present throughout the stalk. The trapper can be home drinking beer while the trap is destroying the body and soul of a helpless animal.
In New Mexico, it is illegal to shoot an animal at night, even a coyote. Traps do their job all night long.
It is illegal for hunters to sell the meat of the animals they kill. The purpose of trapping is to sell the skin.
It is illegal for hunters to use a scent attractant to get an unfair advantage over their prey. Trappers use these to attract the animals to their traps.
Hunters have bag limits. Trappers can kill and kill and kill without any limit of any kind on any species.
Hunters, if they are ethical, will identify their target and take careful aim to insure a quick and clean death. Trapping is indiscriminate and anything but quick and clean. A helpless animal, in excruciating pain, will get his skull bashed in, usually with a pipe or shovel. Then the trapper stands on his chest to be sure he is dead.
The New Mexico department of Game and Fish thinks trapping is a suitable activity for children and gives them a bargain on the license fee if they are between the ages of twelve and seventeen. If this is considered family values by our government agencies, we are in trouble.
Please contact the New Mexico Game Commission and let them know you are opposed to this sort of activity taking place in New Mexico. You can find their names and contact information on my Web site, www.askthebugman.com.
We also welcome comments on this tasteless and obscene activity and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.