It would be more efficient for us to meet. I am just disabled,
not quarantined or anything like that. (That’s a joke.) I can come see
you in a few days (my van is down for repairs), or you may visit me most any
afternoon by appointment. The latter would probably be best as it would also afford
you opportunity to get a sense of the diversity of the neighborhood, a factor
in the incident.
Most of your questions are answered at my website, www.conchbbs.com. I’m also a blogger,
and an account of the incident is at http://adayinthelifeofaperson.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!A36A9A53F986CF2E!724.entry.
Malinda Julien is a nationally recognized trainer of law enforcement canines,
and a friend. She certified Lilly, who was present but not involved at
all. Only the “trainee,” Hot (Roddy) Rod, was involved. Think of Roddy
as a very stripped down Americanized German Shepherd mix (mix being the operative
I note that the Web account isn’t as detailed as what I thought
I wrote. Still, it contains the salient points. Roddy was attacked in the street
and on the sidewalk in front of the house just north of the Robinson’s. No
one was in that house then that I know of. Robinson was bending over of the
other side of her car to do something so she could not know what her little dog
was doing. I frankly didn’t notice it either until it engaged Roddy. Regretfully,
that is the point where controversy enters the tale. Neither Roddy or the
Robinson dog were on leads. In Roddy’s case, being off-lead was necessary
to her training.
I don’t want us to get too far off into the arcane arts of
training service dogs because it often contradicts naïve local ordinances. Few people
grasp the fact that the work of any good service dog is so tailored to the needs
of the handler that only s/he can do the bulk of the training. Those special
service dog schools you hear of mostly teach the humans how to train the dog. I’m
fortunate in that Ms. Julien says I have that ability naturally. Then again,
Lilly was a cinch to train because her instincts are nearly faultless. Roddy will
never be anything more than a pet, but the only way to determine that was by testing
in real-world scenarios. It was quite unfortunate that Ms. Robinson’s Chihuahua
snuck in under my radar and goaded Roddy into a predatory response before she
or I noticed. I’m sure Robinson didn’t mention that I was already
backing Roddy away when she reached her dog. Indeed, she was too irate and hysterical
probably to noticed that her injured dog was still trying to attack Roddy even
as we moved on down the street!
Nonetheless, and I want this to be quite clear to you, Roddy’s
behavior was totally unforgivable by service dog standards. There was no real
threat to her from a Chihuahua maybe 1/10th of her 50 lbs. Hot Rod
is so named for excellent reason; she could’ve lit her afterburners and left
the oversized rodent gasping for air in her vacuum wake. Even easier, Roddy could’ve
gotten close enough to my wheelchair for “Aunt Lilly” to protect her.
Lilly prefers to be on her lead even though she’s exempted by federal
law. We’ll never truly know why Roddy did neither. Under local law, Roddy
and the Robinson dog were likely equally at fault, being in the street off-lead.
However, Roddy miserably failed to meet behavioral standards incumbent for
federal protection as a service dog. My advice would be to honor the claim.
I realize I haven’t answered all of your copious
questions, but this is a good start. I already have good photos of the site of
the incident. Although my number is on my website, I recommend you call Robyn at
281-627-0666 for an appoint with me.
am investigating the incident involving Mrs. Robinson’s dog and your two
dogs. Typically, we require an in person recorded statement from our
insured’s, but as that would not be possible for you, I will perform the
statement via email for information on your, your dogs and how the incident
occurred. I will use the material to determine if you were responsible
for the injury to Mrs. Robinson’s dog. Please confirm that you
understand the emails will serve as your statement for which we make a final
liability decision. I will also need to come take photos of your dogs within
the next week or two.
confirm your name, address, phone number, date of birth, social security
number, marital status and employment status.
are the names, ages and breeds of your dogs and how long have you owned
them. How did you acquire the dogs. Has either dog attacked another
animal(s) during your ownership. If yes, please describe the
incidences. Where you aware of any animal attacks by either dog before
your ownership. If yes, please describe what you were told.
describe how the incident with Mrs. Robinson’s dog occurred.
receiving your answers, I will ask additional questions, so this may require
several emails back and forth. I appreciate your cooperation.
Plaza Drive, Suite 400
Land, TX 77479
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