Authorities Seize Fayetteville Man's Pets In Vaccination Dispute
Posted February 10, 2006
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — State law says you have to vaccinate your dogs against rabies, and animal control authorities don't take that lightly. Officers took away almost 20 of one Fayetteville man's pets, saying he broke the law.
Neighbors told officers Edward Parker's dogs scared them and weren't vaccinated. He said he couldn't afford the shots.
"I just didn't have the money," said Parker.
Officers tried to help Parker turn things around. Finally, they got a warrant and went to his home. They rounded up more than a dozen dogs. Some animals got away by jumping over the fence, but most were taken into custody.
"I was up all night, crying," said Parker. "I missed my dogs, that's why. I missed them real bad."
Officers admit Parker took care of his dogs.
"He did feed his animals," said Fayetteville police officer Christine Gallagher. "He probably fed his animals before he fed himself."
"If he had just got the rabies (shots) that we had asked him to, that was our only request," said Cumberland County's Animal Control director, Sue Nicholson. "And he blatantly refused on many occasions."
While Animal Control tried to find the dogs new homes, Parker clings to the ones left behind. One puppy isn't old enough to get shots yet. But, if Parker wants to keep him, he knows what he has to do.
Some of the dogs are already up for adoption. Officers plan to vaccinate them as they land new homes. The new owners will have to foot that bill.