Thursday 23rd July 2009
London Takes Part in Worldwide Candle Lit Vigil for Death Row Dog:
Dog lovers are travelling from across the UK to gather outside the Northern Ireland Office, Millbank, in central London to show unified global support for a pet dog condemned to death by a Magistrates Court in Northern Ireland. The Candle Lit Vigil is being held for one hour between 9 and 10pm on Thursday 23rd July and coincides with other vigil events being held on the same day in Dublin, New York and Seattle alongside an enormous worldwide candle lit vigil where thousands of people are due to take part in their own homes and work places in recognition of the plight and suffering of a dog named ‘Bruce’ who has captured the hearts and minds of people across the world.
Bruce was a young pet dog living happily with his family in Northern Ireland when on September 19th 2007 he was seized as an alleged “pit bull type” and taken to secluded kennels whilst his owner was taken to court for owning a banned type of dog contrary to the Dangerous Dogs Act (Northern Ireland) Order 1991. Owner Shannon Brown, aged 20years, supporters and neighbours have created petitions, and videos asking for help to save pet dog Bruce who has never put a paw wrong and his case has now been championed by masses of people everywhere who have reacted in horror to the news he has to die and are demanding he be spared the death penalty.
Thousands Stand Up To Defend Bruce the Dog:Politicians and officials have been inundated with letters, emails and phone calls from concerned members of the public calling for the release of death row dog Bruce. Meanwhile complex legal proceedings are ongoing as the news breaks this week that the law which has condemned Bruce and countless others like him, appears to have been Amended a staggering eight years ago, seemingly unnoticed by officials and adding utter confusion to the whole sorry situation. The life of Bruce hangs by a thread but as his persistent battle to survive continues more and more people are screaming for his release. Politicians have been asked to change the legislation, veterinary groups have been deluged with letters from dog owners pleading that every veterinary surgeon refuses to administer the fatal injection, even Her Majesty the Queen has been requested to intervene and grant a Royal Pardon and the protests keep flooding in as the news spreads across the Internet. As the legal wheels turn slowly, the campaign to ‘Save Bruce’ intensifies and eyes from around the world are now attentively watching Northern Ireland. Bruce remains isolated from his family on canine death row awaiting his fate, unaware of the world wide support he has. For
Further Information – Please Contact:
DDA Watch - Email: firstname.lastname@example.org / Tel: 0844 844 2900
Endangered Dogs Defence & Rescue - Email: email@example.com
Notes to Editors: Photographs of all vigil events will be available. Owner Shannon Brown can be contacted via DDA Watch.
In GB the Amendment of 1997 refers to the ‘Dangerous Dogs Compensation and Exemption Schemes Order 1991’ which can be accessed online and lays out the procedure for exemption (registration onto the Index of Exempted Dogs).
The NI Amendment of 2001 refers to a similar scheme defined in Statutory Rule 466. Quote: “(2) Where an order is made under sub-paragraph (a) of Article 25C(3), Part III of the Dangerous Dogs Compensation and Exemption Schemes Order (Northern Ireland) 1991 (SR No. 466) shall have effect as if--“
Statutory Rule 466 is thought to be an important piece in the jigsaw as it is expected to describe the legal process by which owners must follow to save the life of their dog when an order is made by the court as an alternative to destruction. Campaigners painstakingly searched for the elusive document but the actual statutory rule could not be found online, which was rather strange and extremely frustrating. There were several references to it, and so it had to exist. Research was not helped by the fact that the Northern Ireland assembly suspended for four years between 2002 and 2007 and power reverted to the Northern Ireland Office, the NI Assembly was reinstated in May 2007.
Statutory Rules NI dating back to 1991 can be found online, but the SR 466 1991 is not listed and it has taken time to locate.. It seems from this Order that the District Council is responsible for running the exemption scheme which directly affects the life and death of innocent pet dogs like Bruce in Northern Ireland.
Welcome Home Bruno
We would like to welcome home Bruno an eleven year old dog who was seized in march this year under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991as a suspected Pit Bull Terrier type. His case was treated sensitively by the police at Bolton, and his owners were dealt with under section 4b of the DDA amendment meaning that they did not face criminal proceedings and allowing the magistrates discretion to allow Bruno onto the register of exempted dogs.His family are delighted to have him home as is the family parrot who has been shouting his name since he was seized