Dog Days of Summer


In my daily travels, I see how a wide variety of people live. My job takes me to the roughest projects in town and the nicest suburban subdivisions. I see rich and poor alike every day. Well, mostly I see people who shouldn’t have pets.

Notice I didn’t say …people who shouldn’t be allowed to have pets. You will have to go elsewhere for that kind of hysterical call for government intervention.

There was a story on WKRN this morning, (it isn’t up on that newfangled internet machine two hours after it was on the air; so much news, so little time, I guess) about some pit bull attack out in Donelson. The pit bull was chained to a tree, and with Hannibal Lecter-like skill, broke free of its restraints and went after a woman who was searching for her lost dog. Then, the pit bull carved off the face of another dog and attempted to pass itself off as an innocent victim when animal control showed up. Or something like that.

The owner of the pit bull claimed that the woman looking for her dog must have attacked the pit bull and provoked it into escaping its captivity.

First off, if you feel that chaining a dog to a tree is acceptable and responsible pet ownership, you don’t need to have a dog. Go breed yourself another ugly kid if you need something to tie to a tree.

Here’s what I see every day. Some poor mutt staked out in the yard with approximately four feet of chain. A turned over water bowl is nearby surrounded by piles of dog turds. Looky here dumbasses, you are forcing the dog to shit where he eats. You would be a little aggressive too, were that your living conditions. Wait, oh sorry, I’ve been in your houses. You pretty much already shit where you eat.

The other breed of idiot dog owner is the one who thinks it a bright idea to buy a six by six chain-link kennel to put a seventy pound dog in. By the time you squeeze in the stylish, plastic igloo dog house you picked up at Wal-Mart, Ol’ Yeller has about three feet to move around to do his daily business.

If you need to keep something in a cage, buy a bird or get yourself another foster child.

Here’s how this is going to roll, moron pet owners. I know you aren’t breaking any laws. There is, after all, no law against being stupid. I have a pair of bolt cutters and am not scared of coming back late at night and setting Fido free.

You know, if I have the spare time and there isn’t something good on TV that night.


21 Responses to “Dog Days of Summer”

  1. Exador Says:

    Amen. Nothing boils my blood like seeing some poor dog staked out in the back yard.
    I keep asking “Why did they bother to get a dog?” They never interact with it.

    Fuckheads of the world: Dogs are PACK animals. They NEED social interaction. Putting them in solitude is torture.

    My only hope is that the poor bastard takes out one of these morons’ kids, thus reducing the breeding potential.

  2. Sarcastro Says:

    Excellent point.

    And they wonder why the dog goes batshit when let out.

  3. love Says:

    I agree completely with you on they can’t be tied up or kenneled like that. Only thing is you needto pay attention to if they are out there for a lttle bit of time and still being watched or if thats were they are forced to live.

  4. DDBrep6 Says:

    I hate when people chain/pen their dogs.
    I’m the region 6 rep. coordinator for Dogs Deserve Better if you’ve never visited our web site, you should, we need more volunteers and representatives.
    There are laws all over the country either banning tethering or limiting the amount of time a dog can be tethered.
    If you would like to see if there is a law in your community, go to :
    Love you guys !! Keep Bitchin’

  5. Jay Says:

    You could cut them free but dogs are so loyal even to the most underserving owner that they most likely wouldn’t even run away from home if given a chance.

    That has to be the longest sentence I’ve typed in a long time. Oh well, it’s just the internet.

  6. SayUncle » Dog stuff Says:

    […] A to the men: First off, if you feel that chaining a dog to a tree is acceptable and responsible pet ownership, you don’t need to have a dog. Go breed yourself another ugly kid if you need something to tie to a tree. […]

  7. Music City Bloggers » Blog Archive » A Dog’s Life Says:

    […] Sarcastro hates some Tennessee dog people. First off, if you feel that chaining a dog to a tree is acceptable and responsible pet ownership, you don’t need to have a dog. Go breed yourself another ugly kid if you need something to tie to a tree. Share and Enjoy: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages. […]

  8. S-townMike Says:

    I guess I’ll step up as one dog owner who does stake the mutt in the back. I’ll make no bones about why we got the dog: first and foremost for security and second for companionship.

    We crate trained her as a puppy inside, but we always knew she would be an outside dog, because we don’t subscribe to the co-habitation theory of pet ownership. When we moved her to the back, she started chewing up the house and trying to dig everywhere, including under the fence. We would be much less responsible dog owners if she dug under the fence and roamed the neighborhood (and we have had other neighborhood dogs escape their owners and dig up our flowerbeds, so we didn’t want her to be the same problem as those “more humane” dog owners).

    The best option for us seems to be a 20′ tether and a regular practice of taking her off to play supervised and to walk her consistently until she is old enough so that she does not care about digging or chewing up wood. I pick up her shit nearly every other day, and her food and water are at least 30-40 feet from her shit/piss spot in the yard. She has a wood house that shields her from the cold (I put straw in it during the winter), but she has almost chewed that to the point of dilapidation (I’ll get another one for her in the fall).

    As one of the “fuckheads,” I would only say that if dogs are pack animals, then it is practically inhumane for people (who cannot take their dogs to work with them) to own dogs in general unless they own a pack of dogs. And most ideally, if we swallow the pack argument hook-line-and-sinker, then the most humane treatment of dogs would be to let them stray with 6 or 7 other dogs free of human ownership. The pack argument is reasonable, but human and dog interaction is not exclusively pack interaction. We can only mimic dogs so much.

  9. b Says:

    Mike, you will need to walk your chained up dog every day until it dies. Not just until she’s grown up enough. The reason your dog is chewing her own house is because she’s a pack animal and is separated from her pack. It makes dogs anxious as hell, and that is what she does to relieve stress. Please reconsider chaining your dog.

  10. b Says:

    I really restrained myself up there. Rationalization of mistreatment of animals makes me fucking pissed off.

  11. Sparkwood & 21 » Blog Archive Says:

    […] Dogs deserve better. Please, please reconsider chaining your dog full-time. […]

  12. S-townMike Says:

    And I restrain myself from making fun of owners who treat dogs as people and co-habit with them. If you cannot distinguish between owners who let their dogs live in their own shit and owners who take responsibility in exchange for staking the dogs, then we don’t have a common frame of reference to talk.

    I didn’t mean to suggest that we would never walk her after she stops digging and chewing. I meant to suggest that the tether would no longer be necessary when she grows out of that behavior.

    I also don’t subscribe to the theory (and it is a theory) that the only reason that any dog chews things up is because they are not with the pack. Different dogs have different personalities. Some are chewers, some aren’t. When she was inside with us as a puppy, she was a chewer then, and despite our best efforts to train and discourage her, she remains a chewer, but we have been told that eventually they grow out of it.

    We adopted this dog after she was picked up as a stray puppy. And we have given her a loving home with daily attention and care that she might not have otherwise had. Maybe I should have thought twice about relating my situation at sarcastro’s place.

  13. Exador Says:

    “it is practically inhumane for people (who cannot take their dogs to work with them) to own dogs in general unless they own a pack of dogs.”

    That’s why I insisted on getting two.

    Mike, your set-up is not what I would prefer, but I don’t run the world. Certainly, there should be plenty of middleground between those that carry their dogs in little purses and those that abandon (meaning permanently) in the back yard.

    I do believe that your dog is chewing out of boredom. It’s great that you play with her regularly. Certainly, that amount of stimulous and interaction is the critical thing, especially if you do it every day (nag nag nag).
    I DO make the distinction that you mention, so long as being an outdoor dog still means that the dog interacts with the family. I prefer the dog comes in at night, but that is difficult, I know, since they get pretty dirty in the yard.
    And like B says, the dog should get regular exercise, not only for health, but it will help reduce her desire to go nuts at the times that she is away from the yard.

  14. S-townMike Says:

    I can deal with nagging, that’s fine. It’s the way-out impractical shit that is hard to brook. (Lordy: two dogs=twice the food and twice the shit to pick up!)

    I understand completely that if I have to stake my dog, then I have extra care responsibilities that owners who don’t won’t have. When I pick up her shit, I perpetually feel like the pet, not the owner, but that’s okay. It’s the trade-off for choosing the constraint system that I have.

    Speaking of constraint systems, isn’t the leash law inhumane under the idea that dogs should be free to roam in packs? Every time I take my dog for a walk she is always on the leash with a choke chain. Is that inhumane, considering that pack dogs don’t naturally come with leashes? I consider it one of those compromises (rationalizations?) that humans have to make to own pets.

    BTW, about 10 years ago when my oldest was 5 or 6, we were out walking and two labs dashed from their owners’ yard out into the street and growled and barked at us causing my daughter to become hysterical and practically shinny up me to get away from the dogs. The owner yelled from her porch not to worry, but that her dogs were really friendly. I didn’t feel that way at the other end of the dog’s bark and bared teeth. Those dogs were roaming freely in a pack and were not treated inhumanely. But was the owner being responsible even though she was convinced that her dogs were friendly?

    This is the problem that I have with dog owners who are convinced that if they treat their dogs “naturally” then the dogs will be perfectly behaved and appropriate to people. It is fine to have theories about the way dogs will act, but for me as a responsible pet owner, I also bear some responsibility for controlling my dog–regardless of my prejudices for her–so that she does not become a burden to the human beings in my community.

  15. Margery Says:

    Did you know that Iditarod dogs are forced to live at the end of a five foot chain? Dogs who don’t make the main team are not taken off chain. For more information about the cruelties Iditarod dogs are forced to endure, check out the Sled Dog Action Coalition website,

  16. Justin Buist Says:

    I caught this link via SayUncle and thought I’d chime in.

    I’m pretty much with S-townMike on this one, though my dog isn’t really an outdoor dog. We put our dog out on a 30′ cable a couple of times a day. Early in the morning (5:30ish lately) he wakes up and lets me know he wants to go outside, so I do the food/water thing, put him on the line, and he’s there until I wake up or he paws at the door letting me know he’s “done”.

    Same thing happens when I, or the SO, returns from work.

    Aside from that he’s inside unless I’m out playing with him in the back yard or walking him around the property for a quick elimination.

    It’s not optimal, but until I have the resources to properly fence in the back yard that’s just how things have to be.

  17. Sarcastro Says:

    Maybe I should have thought twice about relating my situation at sarcastro’s place.

    What brought that on?

    One would think we could agree that there is a big difference between putting a dog on a 20′-30′ foot cable with plenty of attention and care and putting a dog on a chain of ten feet or less and leaving it to rot in the yard amongst its own feces.

  18. snikta Says:

    I have issues with tethering dogs, whether on a 10′ or 50′ chain. I have more issues, S-townMike, with “outside dogs.” Mike, you need to spend the winter in that dog house (or in the new one you’re going to buy in the fall), and THEN decide if your dog should be an outside dog or not. A dog is not a security system. Responsible pet ownership goes beyond restraining the animal. A pet is part of a family, and you share your life, and living arrangements, with it.

  19. Jay Says:

    Am I the only one that uses Invisible Fence for my dog when it’s outside?

  20. Exador Says:

    Atlanta’s paper has a story about a 6 yr old girl with Downs Syndrome, who woke up before the family, walked outside to the neighbors’, and walked up to a Rottweiller chained in the unfenced backyard. They suspect she was trying to pet the dog when it mauled her to death.

  21. Exador Says:

    Why keep the dog at all?

    You said you kept it for security reasons. My guess is that the dog barks all the time while you are at work and no one would take notice. If you don’t want the dog as a pet why not just put it up for adoption?

    I don’t think your dog will “grow out of the chewing stage” (unless your dog is under 7-9 months old)

    Why let it suffer while you wait? Puppies chew. You put them in a indoor kennel while you are work so nothing is damaged. A dog chews for a reason. Either train the dog or let it go.

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