Our Opinion: Tragedy shows need for dog law
Published 5:14 am Wednesday, January 31, 2007
A young family is grieving the loss of a beautiful toddler, and our community is grieving with them.
What happened to the Kitlica family, whose baby daughter was killed by a dog, is a tragedy, and our hearts go out to them.
This kind of incident has happened in so many communities across the country, but that it is common makes it no less tragic.
What is tragic is that we have no law or ordinance on the books to deal with vicious dogs - and that must change now.
The state Legislature has failed to pass a law that will allow officials to pick up such dogs, but county officials now have the opportunity since a limited home rule act provides for local nuisance ordinances.
The humane society has been working with the county to develop such an ordinance. After what happened to little Taylor Kitlica, we can't imagine county officials would not pass the measure.
But they will have to take it a step further. The humane society doesn't yet have the manpower or resources to be able to enforce such an ordinance, and they need more money if that ordinance is to have any teeth at all.
We all need to remember that stray dogs, however friendly they may seem, can be very dangerous, simply because they were bred to be that way - or were not bred to be gentle.
If you find a stray animal, call the Escambia County Humane Society. They are trained to deal with animals and are best equipped to handle a strange dog.
What happened to Taylor Kitlica and her family is truly a tragedy, but we can learn from it - and do more than hope that it never happens again.