has been dogging Camarillo for a long time
By Colleen Cason, ccason@VenturaCountyStar.comVentura County Star
July 14, 2006
Indignation fueled Donna Brennan as she composed her letter to the editor.
"Can anyone explain," she wrote in her best longhand, "what wisdom prevailed when Camarillo's fireworks extravaganza was moved from the high school field to the airport grounds, which of course, was already the home of the County Animal Shelter?
"This appears to be both mental and physical cruelty," she concluded. She added a "sincerely" and a stamp and sent that puppy to the paper.
The Camarillo woman then waited for the hue and cry from a great, dog-loving American public. She waited for compassionate city officials to change the venue of the July 4 celebration.
Little did Brennan know she would be waiting 18 years
. The clipping she sent me indicates her missive appeared in a 1988 edition of the old Camarillo Daily News. And today she remains indignant that her city's Independence Day fireworks are still shot off over the shelter. So much so that she talked to me on Thursday from her bed at Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center.
Please take a moment to read the rest of Colleen Cason's article by clicking here
The above article followed one also written by Colleen Cason published on July 7th titled Fidos endure another fitful Fourth in Camarillo
you may read that article by clicking here
In response to comments left on the Ventura County Star website after Ms. Cason's July 7th article Anson MacLauchlan writes:
Dear Miss Herrera,
In the comment above you wrote in reply to Carole Hunter "I, too, was there at the shelter on the 4th. What I saw was not what you saw."
I notice that you did not say that you were there to help. I am guessing that you were with Ventura County Supervisor Kathy Long as she strolled through the kennels that night. Please forgive me if I am wrong but neither of you were assigned to dogs to look after. After going back and double checking I do NOT see either of your names on the list of volunteers. Neither of you got your hands dirty or were down on the floor holding or trying to restrain a dog. Again, please feel free to correct me if I am wrong.
As someone who was at the shelter on July 4th, 2005 and again this year I would like to go on the record as saying that I too feel that setting off community fireworks within several hundred yards of where already distressed cats and dogs are housed is not appropriate. I was one of two men who worked desperately trying to distract one dog during the 2005 display. This particular German Shepherd was calm and relaxed with her tail wagging moments before the fireworks display started. The second the fireworks started the dog started to tear at the enclosure.
Thankfully we had been warned during our orientation by shelter manager Kathy Jenks to expect this behavior. During the duration of the fireworks two of us proceeded to stuff towels and blankets between this large dog and the enclosure. Each blanket and towel was in absolute terror ripped to shreds. Had the fireworks not been at this location this behavior and the potential for injury to both the dog and volunteers could have been averted.
As for Ventura County Supervisor Kathy Long's statement that she is a dog person, based on all that I have seen first hand of Ms. Long at the shelter, all I have heard and all I have read including the following excerpts from a 2005 article in the Ventura County Star Ms. Long does not measure up to my definition of a dog person.
On July 2, 2005 the Ventura County Star published an article by Cheri Carlson.
In that article the reporter wrote:
July Fourth is a bad night for pet owners across Ventura County, said Kathy Jenks, the county's director of animal regulation. But it's even worse for animals kept at the Ventura County Animal Shelter in Camarillo. The shelter at 600 Aviation Drive, is within "spitting distance" of Camarillo's annual fireworks display at Freedom Park, she said. As the article continues shelter manager Kathy Jenks is quoted as saying "The Fourth of July is the single worst night of the year. About 50 percent of the dogs are scared to death
of the noise."
Ventura County Supervisor Kathy Long is quoted in that same article. "Certainly, there were a couple of animals disturbed
. Others were trying to find a corner to curl up in."
I ask you, based on the excerpts from the above article who do you think is a dog person? Shelter Manager Kathy Jenks who states about 50 percent of the dogs are scared to death or Ventura County Supervisor Kathy Long who is quoted as saying "a couple of animals were disturbed"?
Ms. Cason, thank you for speaking up for my canine and feline friends who are not able to do the same for themselves ~ Hunter