A howl for Marshall and Millions

“Breed discrimination may have played a part in the killing of Marshall and Millions as Amstaffs.

The fatal shooting of Marshall and Millions by London’s Metropolitan Police has sparked outrage among dog lovers and animal rights advocates after videos of the incidents have gone viral on social media.

Based on the videos alone, the shooting of the American Staffordshire Terriers, or Amstaffs, was clearly unwarranted and a clear case of the excessive use of force by the world’s oldest existing law enforcement force.

It’s police brutality at its barest, with actions being taken by the cops without any consideration for the lives of the two dogs and their owner, as well as the people in the vicinity who could have been hit by stray bullets.

The two dogs were on leads and were not attacking anyone when several London cops confronted its owner over the complaint of a woman that Marshall and Millions allegedly attacked her own small dog.

Quoted in various media reports, the woman’s husband said that she had been inconsolable since the killing of Marshall and Millions because she felt responsible for their demise. She reportedly did not want to involve the police precisely because she feared they’d mishandle the situation.

None of the London policemen involved clearly understood that the two dogs were just doing what any dog would do in the same situation — to protect their owners against potential attackers.

Even a cute Shitzu would have acted the way Marshall and Millions did as the dense coppers were shouting all at once at the owner while menacingly closing in with their guns drawn.

If they had proper training, the cops could have de-escalated the situation. They could have just followed the dogs and their owner as they walked until such time that the city’s animal control unit had arrived to take away the dogs without shooting them dead.

It’s easy to do Monday morning quarterbacking, but the videos showed the first dog was gunned down with a shotgun burst while its owner was leaning dangerously close by. It was pure luck that the buck shots did not ricochet off the ground and hit the man.

Probably, the muscular dog absorbed all of the shots, about nine per shell, with each measuring just a tad smaller than a 9mm round. It’s almost always fatal when shotguns are used, thus the shooter perfectly knew he was firing not to disable but to kill.

The killing of the second dog was as ghastly and unnecessary as the first one, if not more so, as it was already running away, dragging in the process the body of the first dog that was fatally shot.

I’ve always had big and small dogs, from dachshunds, to “aspins”, Dalmatians, a German Shepherd, and now a Great Dane, “Bebu,” who is bigger than I standing, and certainly more muscular and powerful.

I know that dogs, especially big ones, can either make people swoon and want to touch them, or scare the s**t out of them. For this reason, whenever I walk the dog — small or big — I make it a point to show to all and sundry that I have total control. Responsible dog owners do not just clean up after their pets; they also must not allow them to menace other people, sometimes with their sheer size or reputation as a breed. In the case of my Great Dane, it could not hurt a fly, but people do not know that and so I keep the dog far away from anyone.

Breed discrimination may have played a part in the killing of Marshall and Millions as Amstaffs. Staffordshire Terriers are medium-sized dogs that are known for their muscular breed, short coat, and friendly temperament.

But just like any breed, Amstaffs, while generally very good with children and other pets, can be very loyal and protective of their owners, and can be aggressive if not properly trained.

Amstaffs are often mistaken for pit bulls, which according to DogsBite.org accounted for 63 fatal dog attacks in the United States and nine in the UK as per a BBC report.

Maybe Marshall and Millions were mistaken, too, for pit bulls, and that, coupled with the sheer incompetence of the members of the Metropolitan Police involved, led to their destruction by at least one trigger-happy London cop.

Read more Daily Tribune stories at: https://tribune.net.ph/

Follow us on social media
Facebook: @tribunephl
Youtube: TribuneNow
Twitter: @tribunephl
Instagram: @tribunephl
TikTok: @dailytribuneofficial