Monday, February 25, 2013

Feral Dogs

Imagine my surprise when the regional director of Dog Law asked me if our shelter would be willing to accept feral dogs!  I had so many questions run through my head and this is what I learned from him.

A farmer in another county saw that his cattle were being tormented by dogs coming from nearby woods.  So, rather than lose valuable cattle, he began feeding the dogs.  Over a period of time, the dogs multiplied and became more problematic.  Then the dog law became involved.  The farmer did not want to sign the dogs over to dog law because he feared for their fate.  Instead, he got licenses for five of the dogs. 

I'm not sure about time frames in this situation, but soon the five dogs multiplied into 30 dogs.  Now there is a bigger problem.  Are they dogs or are they wildlife?  Are they safe to be around?  What would a pack of 30 dogs do to farm animals?  So many questions and so few answers.

Another shelter has accepted some of the dogs.  I did see a picture of one and it looks like a blue heeler.  I wonder if the shelter is successful in keeping the 'feral' dogs.  Are they adoptable?  Have they mated with true wildlife?  Can you trust them in a family?  Can you trust them with other animals?  So many questions.

So right now, my answer to the feral dog question is no. I don't want to accept any feral dogs.  There are too many challenges in sheltering already, I don't need to add more to our plate.  Never the less, it is a very interesting conundrum.

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