Saturday, February 2, 2008

Dog days

Everyone's howling about dog control. Understandable, I guess. In my case, there is this cute dog across the street. She's kind of a wire-brush terrier boonie dog, except that is a misnomer. She is a feral animal. Apparently so are her friends that hang around, though I'm less certain of that.

Tourists love to take her picture as she lolls in the sand. She barks at them. Cutely. Most think so, though some are obviously intimidated by three or four dogs just lurking. When she drops a litter the barking is less cute.

She threatens the tourists, especially small children. One Russian lad would probably have been attacked; he was running far ahead of his parents. I warned her off. Only one top dog in this neighborhood, thank you.

Happily, the puppies have been cute, so they get rounded up rather quickly. Then she returns to her old habits. Her friends come back and they pack up, attacking dogs being walked down the street and chasing the occasional car.

They eat horses, don't they?

So what's the answer? There seems to be some opposition to eating our way out of the problem, though it is traditional in some cultures.

Not for me, with the admission that I have sampled Fido. Not by choice, mind you. I was at a birthday party and they put a chaser out before the rest of the food. Not bad, I said, reaching for more. What is it? (If you have to ask that question, you're probably already in trouble.)

After general laughter, and a few "woof, woofs", I filled my plate again. Because, of, in order: my inner eight-year old who would take any dare, the rationale that I'd already eaten it and I really was hungry, and, weakest of all, I didn't know the dog by name.

Not for sale, in any case. I think USDA approval of a dog-packing plant would be a reach. Also, I remember the business that used to buy dogs no questions asked. Quick beer money for the boys. And, now that I think of it, my neighbor in Tanapag who seemed to think a beating gave it more flavor until I offered to whack him with his own stick if he didn't stop.

Don't lase me bro

I think shooting is out, the community seems to have responded rather strongly to that one. That reprobate up on Navy Hill who was putting out antifreeze was also on the wrong track. Besides, the corpses would probably never be collected.

Sterilization is great, but a few operations won't begin to address the problem. Maybe India has the answer. Did you catch In Northern India, Unemployed Youths Hired To Sterilize Monkeys? The 300 political footballs in the government, unemployed garment workers, high school graduates. The possibilities are endless.

Laser sterilation, according to the Chief Minister. Obviously we'd need some controls. Don't want some guy settling a grudge outside a bar.

The kids are right

I've been searching the local papers to no avail. I'm sure I wasn't hallucinating. Wasn't there a story about school kids wanting to solve the problem and wondering why the Legislature did nothing? They'll learn, they're young.

Money for a pound, but not enough, and no animal cruelty laws.

It's (still) amazing to me that a small problem can fester for this long but there's plenty of time for public posturing about pet peeves.

Maybe dog-kicking is needed to release frustration, and that's why it can't pass the Senate. Or, again, they fear any animal control is a backdoor attempt to move in on cockfighting. No politician in his or her right mind would take on that group. Talk about one issue.


yo bro said...

yo bro...

what the protectorate needs...

is an MDARS-E, it will track anything, the blurb says.

boing-boing link

KAP said...

Mmm, I think I know that voice. You're up late.

Do you think the dogs would follow voice commands? Or we should maybe outfit it with a laser.

I found the electronic scarecrow while I was thinking about this, but tourists would set off the motion detector too. Your toy would have the same problem, but it might be kickass at some of the tourist sites to attack muggers. Too bad they don't wear name tags.

lil_hammerhead said...

Saipan won't be the same without the dogs roaming around. I've always liked the dogs. It's quaint. The reality is, there are very very few dogbite attacks on tourists.

KAP said...

Animal tours, eh? We've got the Goat Island nickname. Saipan could be Dog Island. Cows for Tinian of course (that's a nod to Pete A.) Fruit Bat Island? Rota would be insulted.

Were you here during the 80's distemper epidemic? Sometimes nature takes a hand and that's a nasty disease to watch.

Oh, and you need to add one word: very few dogbite attacks on tourists 'reported'.