Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ketch poles

Just so no one thinks Animal Control is all Puppies and Kittens, here's a primary tool of my trade:


This is a "ketch pole", or hard leash. The knicks and tears you see in the protective sleeve are all bite marks from dogs that would have otherwise bitten me. Used incorrectly, you can kill an animal with this. However, used correctly, this tool makes the difference between me safely handling an animal and my being crippled, or worse. Used correctly, it keeps the animal and the handler safe.

There are people in the Animal Welfare Industry that call for the outlawing of tools like my ketch pole. They think its uneccessary to use them. They claim that you can safely handle all animals with soft leashes and a pleasing tone of voice.

Bullshit idiots.

7 am call from police dispatch on Wednesday morning. Two Rottweilers running loose a block from a school had dragged down a 10 year old boy, bitten him, and were trying to get to a bicyclist after the boys father fended them off with a shovel long enough to get the boy inside the house. I responded, alone, to the scene. No police officers, no backup. Just me. When I pulled onto the street, the dogs were doing their best to attack a van that was trying to drive down the street.

Think I'm getting out of my truck with a soft cloth leash and some baby talk?

I don't think so.

I resolved the situation safely, btw. Although it was most definitely a "sphincter moment".

And now... yes, I do get to play with cute kittens, too.


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