Letter to the Editor for Jan. 11, 2013

Written by Baker City Herald readers January 11, 2013 07:34 am

I have lived at 1005 Park St. for 50 years. My husband, Tim, suffered a massive stroke seven years ago. He is at Meadowbrook care facility. I live here alone with my dogs. When I go to Meadowbrook, my “dangerous” dogs take turns going with me. The residents’ eyes light up when they pet and talk to them. It makes me feel good to create some joy.

This mess started first of August. I’d been working in the front yard, I went across the street and my dogs started barking at me. I quickly went back so they would stop. Greg Brown caught up with me outside my fence. He said you need to get rid of those dogs. With all the commotion, three of my corgis got into a fight. I jumped over the fence to pull them apart and saw that Greg was videoing us. I screamed at him and Sandy Zemmer to get away from my fence and the dogs would stop.

I went in and called the police to talk to an officer. Shannon Regan came out. I wanted to find out if it was legal to video a person without their knowledge. I found it’s not illegal. Shannon asked me if I had my kennel license and discovered I had overlooked it. Not intentionally — this year it seems everything bad was happening, death, illness, my husband was changing mentally and physically. So Regan wrote me a ticket. I went to Justice Court and was told just go get your license and come back in two weeks. Police Chief Wyn Lohner and Officer Davidson were supposed to be the only ones who could sign the license. Easy? Wrong.

I asked Lohner if my license was signed. No, he said, but we just want to make sure you have no dangerous dogs. I asked who is “we,” and he avoided the question.

Later, Lohner shows up with Officer Davidson to inform me we decided you can only keep four dogs. I said I’m getting a lawyer, I’m not losing my dogs. I live on Social Security and with expenses of Meadowbrook, things are tight. But loving my precious dogs is a priority. By going to the lawyer I found that I shouldn’t have to pay kennel license and I live in a low level zone where there are no restrictions on small animals.

My vet had even written a letter for me stating that he had been to my home several times, there are no dangerous dogs and they are well-cared for. I keep my yard clean and in the past two years have planted 17 shrubs and trees and built an eight-foot deck at my front door.

When the weather will let me I’ll put steel panels a couple feet inside my fence so a dog can’t get near the fence. My dogs don’t bark all the time; they get excited when I’m leaving, cleaning the yard or go to the garbage can.

I finally found some dog collars that vibrate and I ordered some. I don’t believe in shock collars. I’m protecting my dogs from the people, not people from dogs.

I just need the city to sign the kennel license. My husband is in the hospital and I can’t take any more of this hassle.

Editor’s Note: A story about neighborhood complaints regarding Robinson’s dogs was published in the Dec. 21 issue of the Herald.