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Man faces charges after dog kills raccoon that caused damage to garage
Jackson Citizen Patriot ^ | February 09, 2011, 6:00 AM | Danielle Salisbury

Posted on 02/09/2011 1:50:59 PM PST by Gennie

Man faces misdemeanor charge of animal cruelty after his dog kills young raccoon that caused some damage to garage

Seth Foster, 23, said he found his family garage in disarray last summer and sent his dog in the building to investigate.

Grizz, a blue heeler, returned with the culprit, a young raccoon.

As two teenage boys watched, one of them filming its actions with a cell phone, Grizz killed the coon, Foster said.

Now, Foster is facing a misdemeanor charge of animal cruelty resulting in death, which is punishable by a maximum of 90 days in jail and a $500 fine. A jury trial is scheduled for Feb. 25 in Jackson County District Court.

Foster, whose father owns a nuisance animal control business, contends he did not do anything wrong. The raccoon damaged his family’s property on Ivan Drive in Spring Arbor Township.

“It’s ridiculous,” he said of the charge. “Everybody I’ve talked to says it’s ridiculous.”

There is a proper way to deal with a pest and it does not involve animal agony, said Chief Assistant Prosecutor Mark Blumer. Raccoons can be trapped alive or quickly and efficiently killed, he said.

Blumer said the dog was encouraged to attack the raccoon and “tear it apart.” He likened this to cockfighting or dogfighting, both of which are illegal. “There is legitimate sport, and then there’s cruel sport,” he said.

“Because you have a license to kill a deer, doesn’t mean you can break all its legs and watch it die slowly.”

He said the prosecutor’s office offered Foster a “reasonable settlement,” the details of which Blumer did not know, but Foster declined to take it. “I am innocent,” Foster said.

The two boys also were charged. Their cases were handled by the juvenile court. Blumer did not know how or whether they had been resolved. The case files are not open to the public.

Foster said the boys lived near his family at the time and would sometimes come to their home. They egged on the dog, he said. Foster said he took the raccoon from Grizz, but the dog got it back.

It did not take Grizz, a smaller herding dog, a long time to kill the animal, Foster said.

A neighbor’s mother called the police, Foster said, and a deputy arrived. According to court records, the incident occurred Aug. 1.

The dog helps Foster and his father, Mike Foster, locate raccoons in attics or small crawl spaces while the Fosters do their work. They catch the animals and sometimes euthanize them.

Mike Foster owns Foster’s Wildlife Control Services. He’s been in the business for about 30 years. The company specializes in trapping, removing and excluding nuisance wildlife. He said he and his son hunt and the family primarily eats wild meat.

In all his work with animals, Mike Foster said he has seen worse than a dog killing a coon. “People put out antifreeze for animals to poison,” he said.

“You can’t call one thing cruel and let other stuff slide.”

The whole incident has been “blown out of proportion,” he said. “To me, it’s no different than if you buy a cat to kill mice.”

There is a difference, Blumer said. The killing of mice is not controlled.

There are trapping and hunting seasons for raccoons. According to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment, a property owner without a license or permit may kill a raccoon all year if the animal is damaging or about to damage private property.

Mike and Seth Foster said the raccoon Grizz killed put a hole in the garage. It damaged a door, ate stored bird feed and knocked tools off a work bench. It was “raising hell,” Mike Foster said.

Dogs cannot be used in Michigan to kill game, only to chase, retrieve or find it, a DNRE spokeswoman said.

Blumer said it would be different if the dog had gotten the raccoon on its own and killed it without human intervention. In that case, it’s nature.

TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: attack; cruelty; dog; racoon
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To: Gennie

What is the difference in letting a dog kill and animal and letting a dog kill a dog.

21 posted on 02/09/2011 2:01:14 PM PST by org.whodat
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To: Gennie
Dam dog caught, killed, and was eating (till I took in away) a opossum....guess I'm in trouble
22 posted on 02/09/2011 2:01:17 PM PST by tophat9000 (.............................. BP + BO = BS ...........................Formula for a disaster...)
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To: Gennie
If his neighbor's pitbull killed a child in the garage, would the authorities blame the dog or the owner?
23 posted on 02/09/2011 2:01:18 PM PST by GVnana
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To: Gennie
My Boston Terrier killed a rat that had become trapped in the basement stairwell the other day. Thankfully none of the neighbors saw what happened.

I waited until it got dark & buried the corpse out behind the garage.

24 posted on 02/09/2011 2:01:31 PM PST by skeeter
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Comment #25 Removed by Moderator

To: Gennie

Haven’t been Coon hinting lately, but it was a common thing back in the day to climb the tree the Coon was tree’d in and throw it dow to the dogs. Part of their training.

Today’s people have been pussified to a crazed extent.

Back years ago when I was a child it was a common thing to take a litter of cats, put them in a bag and drown them, there was no government agency to properly euthanise them and it was better than letting them run loose as feral cats.
Today you would be arrested and get more time than if you drowned a human.

I know the flame is coming, but is it really better to have ASPCA euthanise them than to put them in that sack?
And don’t think for a minute that ASPCA doesn’t euthanise strays.

26 posted on 02/09/2011 2:01:57 PM PST by Venturer
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To: Frank_2001

There nothing granting it, either, which means it is the state’s decision. A state deer license isn’t a federal issue.

27 posted on 02/09/2011 2:02:08 PM PST by Carling (Obama: Inexperienced and incompetent, yet ego maniacal. God help us all.)
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To: Gennie
Should have pelted the 'coon with Pepsi cans.

28 posted on 02/09/2011 2:03:45 PM PST by I see my hands (_8(|)
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To: kbennkc

That is what he did. I can’t imagine a jury convicting, but who knows.

29 posted on 02/09/2011 2:03:48 PM PST by cbvanb
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To: Gennie

This is the answer to all those that say ‘let the govt look, I have nothing to hide.’

You always have something to hide, and if not the govt will pass a law so you do. Or they will interpret old laws in new and violating ways, or bankrupt you with regulations, or in court, or...

30 posted on 02/09/2011 2:04:24 PM PST by Free Vulcan (Vote Republican! You can vote Democrat when you're dead.)
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To: Gennie

>>one of them filming its actions with a cell phone<<


31 posted on 02/09/2011 2:04:38 PM PST by netmilsmom (Happiness is a choice.)
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To: Gennie

I guess my dogs are smarter than the average dog. They don’t let on when a critter gets in the back yard.

When I let them in they’re all slobbered up around the face and have a big smile. That tells me there’s something dead in the back yard.

32 posted on 02/09/2011 2:04:38 PM PST by PeteB570 (Islam is the sea in which the terrorist shark swims. It aids & comforts the shark on it's journey.)
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To: Gennie

Good ol’ coon dog.

PETA says they are cruel to raccoons, and NAACP says they are racist.

And soon Obama will be saying that they are mean to Muslims.

33 posted on 02/09/2011 2:05:30 PM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: Gennie

Clearly the law needs to be changed to permit dogs to clear vermin from dwellings. Or would they rather have people trying to shoot these?

34 posted on 02/09/2011 2:06:16 PM PST by rahbert
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To: Gennie
Good thing Lincoln County, GA isn't like that. Way back when, when I was down and out, I lived in a small shack in the woods. I had an old claw foot tub that I had dug up in a feed lot that I was using to take baths in. The shack was about eight feet wide and twelve feet wide. I made a high bunk bed to sleep in but you could store stuff under it. I had three dogs and three cats that came out to the woods with me after I had lost my home. I had an old wood burning stove in the shack to keep warm with. Also, I had cut a hole in the side of one wall so all the animals could get in.

Every once in awhile I would hear this squealing, then all six animals would come busting through the door, one carrying a rat. They would toss the rat in the tub, then all six would jump in and bat the poor creature back and forth. At times it would take over 15 minutes before they finally killed it. This was their rat soccer game. There were also several other interesting experiences living out there with those six furry friends.

35 posted on 02/09/2011 2:07:32 PM PST by U S Army EOD
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To: Gennie

I love animals....

but I will kill animals when killing them is necessary to protect life and property.

my biggest concern would be that my dog be checked for rabies as that is a big concern in NY State.

If it was me, and I had gotten to a destructive raccoon first, I would have put a cb cap into it then bagged it and thrown it into a dumpster....or buried it.

in areas were rats and vermin are protected by law somehow...folks need to practice the Three S’s


36 posted on 02/09/2011 2:08:10 PM PST by Vaquero ("an armed society is a polite society" Robert A. Heinlein)
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To: Gennie
Ah cripes! WTH?


37 posted on 02/09/2011 2:08:23 PM PST by nothingnew (I fear for my Republic due to marxist influence in our government. Open eyes/see)
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To: Castigar
This is absurd! I used to go after them with a baseball bat (never got one though). Sometimes they would just sit there and stare at me until I was almost on top of them. Some of those suckers are BIG!

LOL, my brothers and I did the same thing. We'd drive around the countryside until we came across a raccoon. Then with flashlights and baseball bats, we'd chase them down and bash em. We'd get $35 to $40 per coon, not bad money for the early 70s.

38 posted on 02/09/2011 2:09:24 PM PST by upsdriver (to undo the damage the "intellectual elites" have done. . . . . Sarah Palin for President!)
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To: Red_Devil 232
Good dogs!

Rabbits are vermin in our neighborhood. Squirrels are only slightly less obnoxious. I'm limited to growing tomatoes, daffodils and a few other things the damn rabbits won't bother.

One of our neighbors has a cat who has an open invitation to come into our yard to dispose of thse vermin. I even plant catnip (anpother thing rabbits won't touch) so the nice kitty can get a reward. Every now and then, he leaves a dead rabbit by my driveway as a thank you gift. We're on pretty good terms. The big kitty is shy, but he knows I appreciate him and will give me a leg rub and accept a pat on the head if I stand still and let him come to me.

39 posted on 02/09/2011 2:12:18 PM PST by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: Carling; Frank_2001
In many states all the game animals belong to the people as a whole ~ which means that licensing arrangements as well as seasons are undertaken by the states.

I believe our Eastern Seaboard former British colonial territories have a quaint law that says the game on any particular piece of land belongs to the landowner, but their fishing laws are much more like Midwestern game control laws.

Then there the states without water, or many game animals, and I suspect they are owned by Bureau of Land Management!

40 posted on 02/09/2011 2:12:18 PM PST by muawiyah
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