WE’LL SAVE ARMY DOGS

Sign pe­ti­tion to stop the killings

Daily Star Sunday - - FRONT PAGE - ■ by CHARLES W PALMER charles.wade­palmer@dai­lystar.co.uk

DOG lovers have be­gun a cam­paign to save hun­dreds of Army dogs sen­tenced to death.

We re­vealed last week how the mil­i­tary has killed 1,000 ser­vice dogs they re­gard as too old or too fierce.

As a re­sult, a pe­ti­tion has been started to stop dogs that have worked along­side troops on the front­line be­ing put down.

And we want you to help us sup­port the ef­fort to save dogs’ lives by sign­ing it and shar­ing it on­line.

Julie Hill, host of DogCast Ra­dio since 2005, be­gan the pe­ti­tion af­ter read­ing our story, in­set.

The 49-year-old had Labrador Buddy, a for­mer ed­u­ca­tion dog with the Blue Cross an­i­mal char­ity, for more than 15 years

She said: “Work­ing dogs en­able us to live our lives safely, and with­out them so­ci­ety couldn’t func­tion as eas­ily. We owe it to them to give them a good re­tire­ment, not dis­pose of them.”

Julie, of Shrop­shire, added: “If

Buddy had been deemed ‘old and worn out’ at eight he’d have had half his life stolen from him.”

A mil­i­tary doc­u­ment seen by this news­pa­per states:

“Old and worn out dogs are an­i­mals who have reached a cer­tain age (over eight-years-old) and are no longer able to carry out their du­ties to the req­ui­site stan­dard.

“Many rea­sons ex­ist but they are ac­cepted to be ‘of age’ and to con­tinue to use them would be detri­men­tal to the an­i­mal, the ser­vice or per­haps both.” The doc­u­ment also says there are “an­i­mals who are not old (un­der eight) and are no longer able to carry out du­ties to the req­ui­site stan­dard”. Deb­bie Con­nolly, who runs the only res­cue cen­tre in the UK re­ha­bil­i­tat­ing re­tired work­ing dogs, slammed the Min­istry of De­fence for its treat­ment of dogs. She claims that the prob­lem of not re­hom­ing dogs stems from the Forces be­ing closed in­sti­tu­tions. Deb­bie ar­gued: “His­tor­i­cally the MoD has not been co­op­er­a­tive in work­ing with other peo­ple. They can’t all be re­ha­bil­i­tated, but the point is they don’t even try.”

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