From Nov. 8, 2008

Posted on January 3, 2011

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This is another heavily vandalized post.  Fortunately, after I reported the neglect of this child to his mother’s employer, the Kingston City School System, supervision of the little boy has improved.   Three yeas later, Zeppo is still with me, in what appears to me the final winter of his life.

   
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? ? I am posting here a copy of the letter I wrote to the Kingston Police Department and the Ulster? County SPCA.

? ? ?? Incidentally, early this morning I woke Zeppo from a very sound sleep and I got my first bite.? I am typing this with a very painful right wrist on which there is not any kind of mark. ? Zeppo has superb bite inhibition, but he can cause a great deal of pain in a half second without leaving as much as a scratch. ? I cannot understand how any responsible parent could risk their child being hurt like this. ? If I treated my dog like this child is treated, the SPCA would have me in jail.? If I let my dog run the streets with no supervision or identification, attacking people and animals at will and damaging propertym I would be arrested.? This poor little boy is being treated worse thasn a dog.? No wonder he seems to hate my dogs so much, he must be jealous of the car they receive.

DearUCSPCA:

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????????? I am reporting repeated acts ofcruelty and violence against several of my dogs by an unsupervised minorchild.? I should have written two monthsago, but learning the name of the child and his residence has been a challenge.? He is a child of Patrick and Anne Killian,who reside at 43 Brewster Street, Kingston, New York,a block from my residence at 17 Levan Street.?He is the smallest child in the neighborhood, about 6 years old, and hestands out in a crowd of similarly neglected children because of his nearlywhite hair and tiny stature.? Thechildren in this neighborhood make it a game to hide each other?s name, but thehead of the Neighborhood Cares group for that block says the tot?s name isRyan.? I have also heard him referred toas Wayne and Joshua.? Whatever his nameis, he has become a neighborhood problem, particularly for animals.

????????? The first time the child (I?ll callhim Ryan, since his next door neighbor says that is his name) came to myattention was about two months ago when he was up stomping on my neighbor?sgarage roof.?? They were out riding theirHarlies and they had confined a visiting?pit bull to the garage.? If Ryanhad managed to break through the roof, you would have read about it on thefront page of the Freeman.? The dog wasfurious.?? I reported the boy to myneighbors and they paid a visit to the Killians.?? Ryan has not gone on their roof again, buthe came across the street to my house and he began to throw rocks, garbage,weeds, and other debris from the curb at my German Shepherd, Lucky, who was ina sick bay on my front porch in the final stages of her unsuccessful fightagainst bladder and kidney cancer.? Whenshe should have been resting on pain medication, she was warning me that shewas being teased.?? She died about a weeklater, and I hoped that he would feel guilty that he had been pelting a dyingdog with rocks.? If he did, he had aweird way of showing it.

????????? During one of Lucky?s final trips to Kingston Animal Hospital,I rescued a small black mutt who was about to be put down.? The dog, Zeppo, had been abused after thedeath of his owner.? I have spent threemonths working with trainers rehabilitating this 13 year old lab cross.? We have been working on basic obedience, andon restoring his sense of trust and well-being.?He was also treated for skin allergies, Lyme disease, and impacted analglands.? His shaved hair is growing back,and Zeppo is enjoying life again.? He isresponding to efforts to restore his trust.?

???????? He?s not stupid, I think he knows thathe was almost killed because he bit a child in Newburgh.?He does not like children.??Perhaps he is reflecting my own feelings about them.? Most of the children in the neighborhood knowenough to either ignore and avoid Zeppo, or to offer him a cookie or a littletreat.?? Not Ryan Killian.?? Zeppo is kept safe behind a chain link fenceor on a choke leash at all times when he is out.?? Not Ryan Killian.?? He?s free to do just what he wants with noadult supervision.? Every time I hearZeppio barking hysterically, I go to window (sometimes with my camera) andthere is Ryan, throwing rocks over the fence, or poking Zeppo with a stick, orshouting and barking at him and shaking the fence.?? Zeppo looses it, and tries his best to getunder, over, or through the fence.? WhenI come out with the camera, the child runs away.

????????? About a week ago, I was walking Zeppo,and my other dog, a Sheltie named Monte, up Levan Street when we encountered theusual mob of a half dozen pre teenagers who all wanted to see and touch thedogs.?? As usual, Zeppo was not interestedin? being the center of attention.?? As usual, I had to tell them to leave himalone, he didn?t want to play.?? And thenRyan decided to show off his Kung Fu moves, and he kicked Zeppo right upsidethe right side of his head.?? I think hewas a little shocked at the reaction?Zeppo charged him with full intent toremove the foot that had just kicked him, I reinjured my recently healed brokenwrist hanging onto the leash, and poor Monte was so scared he pooped right inthe middle of the street.? I thought thatsince this happened right outside of the Killian house, a grownup MUST haveseen it, and that Ryan would be told to leave the dog alone, but that didn?thappen, the next day he hurled a half a brick over the fence at Zeppo.

????????? I refuse to have my dog?srehabilitation jeopardized because a family does not care for their? tiny child as well as I care for my dog.? My dog plays inside a fenced yard with alocked gate.?? Ryan plays all day long inthe middle of the street.?? My dog istaught manners, to sit politely in the presence of strangers.? Ryan apparently is taught to kick dogs in thehead.?? Zeppo had a swollen eye from thatattack, and if his choke collar had broken Ryan would be in the hospital withyears of facial reconstructive surgery ahead of him? (It?s really scarey, because Zeppo?s ratherimpressive teeth are exactly at a level with that child?s face.)

???????? I will be reporting the neglect ofthis toddler to the child abuse hot line as soon as I get his actual name.? I reported the abuse to the police last week,and they are getting a copy of this letter, which I am also posting to the twoWard Nine web sites.? It certainly pointsup the need for more kindness and safety education in our schools, but I thinkbecause they have so many children (Ryan is apparently the baby of the family)the Killians could benefit from special training about the need to teachchildren kindness and safety around animals.?I am particularly interested in Ryan?s benefiting from constructivetraining because he appears to be below the age of 8, and it is at this agethat training is most effective.?? We allknow that cruelty to animals is often a precurser to bullying, spouse abuse,and other violent acts.?? Unremittingcruelty and violence by a child can point to the possibility that the child isbeing mistreated and is reenacting his own treatment on animals.? I would urge hasty action on this matter,before this tiny child suffers the consequences of the neglect by his family.

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Sincerely,

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Lynn (Lei) Isaacs

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Cc:? Kingston Police Dept., 9th WardNeighborhood Cares Group, Restore Access Ward Nine,? Alderman Mike Madsen, Child ProtectiveServices.? hudsonvalleydog.com

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