MONTROSE, CO-Does a dog have the right to protect itself from an abuser? For a dog named Dutch, the courts have told his owners Jeremy and Heather Aguilar that a dog has “No right” to protect itself and has ordered the Aguilar’s to surrender Dutch over to authorities before the court date set for Valentine’s Day.
Dutch a 4-year-old American Allaunt, and is a registered service dog that the Aguilar’s left in the care of his former owner while they dropped a family member off at the airport. The Aguilar’s never dreamt that it would be a death sentence for their beloved Dutch.
While in the care of his former owner, she admitted in court to taking a steel pipe and beating Dutch until his face was swollen, while he was in her backyard. Dutch took that beating without defending himself against his attacker. It was when the former owner grabbed his collar and dragged him into her home and then grabbed his mouth that is when Dutch had had enough and proceeded to bite her leg and buttocks trying to escape from any further injury.
The former owner pressed charges against the Aguilar’s and the Animal Control has ordered the Aguilar’s to surrender Dutch over to them because he has been labeled vicious under the ordinance 6-2-9 (A), Vicious animals. The Aguilar’s have refused to surrender Dutch to authorities and the court has now ordered them to surrender Dutch before the court date that is set for tomorrow.
Under the Ordinance 6-2-9 (A), Vicious animals carries the possibility of one year in jail. Since Dutch is currently under the care of the Aguilars, the Colorado judge has ordered the Aguilar’s to post a $500 appearance bond. The judge warned the Aguilar’s that if Dutch is not surrendered Mr. Aguilar will spend a year in jail.
The Aguilar’s have offered to send Dutch through a rehabilitation program, agreeing to the judge that if the evaluator considered Dutch aggressive, that they would surrender him. The Aguilar’s stated the judge told them it would only be allowed if Dutch's former owner would agree to it. Dutch's former owner refused to agree to the Aguilar’s offer.
Carrie Williams a highly recognized and experienced dog trainer and AKC CGC evaluator Sandie Wyman have both evaluated Dutch and have stated, “Dutch is anything but aggressive."
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