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Cupids dog owner speaks up about roaming issue

Cooper was diagnosed with a cruciate ligament rupture after an encounter with a roaming dog.
Cooper was diagnosed with a cruciate ligament rupture after an encounter with a roaming dog. - Submitted

Incident resulted in $3,000 vet bill

CUPIDS, NL — A dog owner in Cupids could be facing a hefty vet bill following an incident with a roaming dog in the community.

Monte Ryan and his dog Cooper were in their backyard recently when Cooper was chased by a larger, roaming dog, resulting in a collision between the two canines.

The following morning Cooper, who weighs just under 20 pounds, was unable to put pressure on one of his paws, Ryan told the Compass.

“I took him to the vet, and they found out he has what they call a cruciate ligament rupture,” Ryan said. “Basically … he blew out his knee.
“He’s a small dog, so I would imagine the blow he got from this much-larger dog is how that came about, either when they initially hit or when they toppled over on the ground.”

While the vet explained to Ryan that such an injury can heal on its own, chances are it won’t in this instance, possibly resulting in surgery costing up to $2,500 along with the pre-existing $500-vet bill.

Ryan said he has no second thoughts about paying the bill and he’s certain the encounter between Cooper and the other dog was nothing more than some playful action gone wrong.

However, he thinks it’s necessary to remind dog owners about the risks of letting dogs roam.

“We’re lucky it didn’t turn out even worse,” Ryan said from Florida, where he is on vacation. “You can’t blame the dog – they’re animals, that’s what happens. But now, we’ve got this $3,000-vet bill to pay, and my mother is staying in our home to look after our dog while we’re away because he was in no condition to stay in a kennel.

“My wife and I are lucky enough to be able to pay this bill, but what if we were living with a much lower income, or senior citizens relying on pension? We’d never be able to afford that, and then what happens to our dog?”

Ryan has since taken to social media to express his concern about roaming dogs in Cupids – a problem he says has been around for quite some time. He said the Town of Cupids does have bylaws against roaming dogs but does not have any means of enforcing the law, such as a dog catcher, so the problem continues to exist.

“Dog owners need to think more before they let their dog go out on their own,” Ryan said. “I shouldn’t have to fear for my dog’s safety while he’s out on my property – he doesn’t deserve to be laid up in bed on medication for the next three months.”

Since the incident, Ryan has not seen the dog in question roaming about Cupids and hopes his own struggles with roaming dogs has shed some light on the problems they can pose to pet owners.

“I don’t want to see the dog punished or anything like that – the owner did apologize to me, so that’s good. I’d just like to see this kind of thing stop.
“It’s a problem, and one that can be very stressful to some people.”

chris.lewis@cbncompass.ca

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