Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Interview with Katherine Davidson on the slaughtered dog in Laval

 On Saturday, May 6, at noon, Katherine Davidson's "LIVE" video toured Quebec social networks and around the world. She and another witness, in a state of panic, say they saw the police shoot at a dog that did not move. The Laval Police Service later confirmed that the dog had been shot because it was loading a policeman. We were fortunate to be able to speak with Katherine Davidson, who once calmly answered our questions:

Can you introduce yourself and explain your experience in the canine field?

I work with dogs since 2013. I volunteer for different shelters to walk dogs and work their behavior. A canine educator since 2015, I have been training dog behavior at the Dogue Shop and the Academy for Dog Trainers.

What exactly happened when you saw that there was a dog?

We took the exit towards Avenue des Bois from Highway 13 North, like several cars behind us. We slowed down to see what was happening when we saw the police cars, and then we stopped completely when we noticed the white dog. He was between two cars (those of the suspects and one of the police station) lying on the ground next to his owner who was on the ground, being arrested. There was a second policeman with the second suspect on the other side of their cars, and a 3rd who was standing a few meters from the dog. A few moments after we arrived, we saw the one who was with the suspect on the ground, take his weapon out of his case and shoot the dog 3 or 4 times. We had a direct view of this officer who shot the dog.

Do you think it is possible that you arrived after the first shot?

Yes, it's really possible. I can only testify to what I saw when I was there. If the dog was already injured, this could explain why he was lying on the ground without loading the officers (as I have seen). The gunshots we saw were explained by the police, who said the purpose was to put an end to the suffering of the dog - even though the Veterinary Center Laval (an emergency animal hospital) Only 3 minutes from the incident.

What did the dog do when you first saw it?

The dog was lying next to the owner. He was panting, which is often associated with stress. Returning to the moment, we did not have much time to analyze the dog 's emotions, but there were no signs of aggressive behavior when we observed the situation (no teeth out, load, Barking, etc.)

Do you think police need to learn canine body language and receive bite prevention training?

Certainly, and with the possibility that the LSR (BSL) will be applied across the province, meetings with dogs will surely increase. It is important that the police be able to handle situations with animals to keep everyone safe, including themselves - and to do so without the use of a firearm.

As a canine educator, what do you think of the fact that the police shoot a dog that charges? When a dog runs to an unknown, is it always a sign of aggression?

If the dog acted aggressively, they had other tools (Cayenne pepper, stick, etc.) in their hands that they could have used to place them in a safe place and Or injured. Dogs can charge people aggressively, but they can also run to them to welcome them and show them sympathy. In the context of this situation, it is actually possible that the dog ran out of the car to load the officer.

Do you think the police made a mistake by not asking the owners of the dog to control it on a leash or leave it in the car?

Under these circumstances, I do not think their first instinct was to manage the dog, but to arrest their suspects. There was however a third officer who could have closed the door of the car. However, I believe that if the officers were better informed about animal handling techniques, the life of the dog could have been spared.

To finish, here are a few words that Katherine Davidson added at the end of this interview:

"The dog was not threatening at that time, and the blows of mercy to end his life were not necessary (there was no threat). I witnessed an execution and this will remain in me for the rest of my life. I did not need to see this dog die this Saturday. It was a bad judgment of the agent and I hope to see in the future

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