- Posted June 14, 2012 by
San Diego, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Photo essays: Your stories in pictures
PUT YOUR PIT BULLS ON A LEASH, PLEASE!
Local Channel 10 News featured the story and said that Grant, a well-known photographer immediately grabbed his cell phone and called police. When the dog's owner saw that, he immediately grabbed the dog and took off flying in his car out of the parking lot.
Jim was treated for his wounds by the nearby Ocean Beach Lifeguard service and reassured the photographer that he was not at risk for rabies, as his skin was not deeply punctured.
Still, the scourge of dogs on the loose remains a problem in this beach area. Home to a large number of urban voyagers, wandering vagrants, homeless, busking musicians and long term shelter-challenged individuals, many with dogs that trot along beside them.
Since these folks are into their "freedom," many times that very same mentality also extends to their dogs, who remain off leash in the beach area. When those dogs are pit bulls, then the stage can be set for some unpleasant interactions.
Ironically, Jim Grant is a staff photographer for the San Diego Community News Group and he manages to get around town quite a bit taking fabulous photos. He was on the scene for the newspaper in Oct. 2009 when San Diego Police were forced to shoot to death a pit bull that was running loose at the weekly Farmers Market.
When the black dog turned on one of the officers in the parking lot of popular Hodad's restaurant, the pit bull was shot dead in front of a crowd of on-lookers. Jim Grant got that picture and it captured the scene perfectly.
Perhaps the trauma of that memory caused him to panic when he saw yet another wandering dog. The pit bull, sensing his fear, attacked. I know when I ride my bike in the area, that I have come across many groups of young vagabonds and they inevitably are kept company by pet dogs who look in need of a good meal and bath. (Actually, that would apply to both the people and their dogs.) I have been lucky that none of their canines came chasing after me.
Some might ask, why don't the authorities do something about this? The people who cruise around with their pets like this are very stealthy. When they see "the man," they have a unique ability to disappear to avoid "being hassled." Sometimes the police will write tickets to the beach wanderers, but the cops have their hands full with other problems down along the shoreline like drunks in the bars that line Newport Ave.
So I hope that Jim Grant manages to make a speedy recovery from his dog injury. It would be a shame if he was hurt to the extent that he could not operate his camera equipment, which is his love and labor.
No one is looking to demonize dogs with this story or castigate pit bulls. But dog owners need to step it up and be responsible, whether they have a regular address or not. No one enjoying a nice day along the beach should have to shudder in fear when an unrestrained dog bears down on them.
Summer is just about here and the kids were just let out of school this week. They will be all over the place soon enough. No one has the right to harsh the mellow beach buzz by breaking animal control laws and causing injuries like what happened to Jim Grant to occur.
People, put your dogs on a leash and don't forget to clean up after them also. Thank you.
photo credit: Jim Grant