Selectmen reluctantly order dangerous dog euthanized
By K.B. Sherman, Community Reporter
Shrewsbury – After a prolonged saga in which the Shrewsbury owner of two dogs appeared to be adhering to an order to safeguard the public from her pets’ dangerous behavior, another attack has resulted in the decision to euthanize one of the dogs.
At the Oct. 8 meeting of the Shrewsbury Board of Selectmen, a public hearing was held regarding the two dogs in question and their latest misadventure in which another town resident and the resident’s dog were allegedly attacked and injured. The hearing was scheduled to review the latest incident to determine if the dogs were legally dangerous per Massachusetts law and what action to take.
After a number of people were sworn in by Vice Chair James F. Kane, resident Mark Silvers told of a recent encounter with dogs Saydee and Pesky, owned by Jeneen Demers, 31 Westmont Road.
Demers was already the subject of an order by the town which detailed how her two dogs were to be handled so not to annoy or harm other town residents. According to reports, the dogs have a history of menacing and attacking other people, property, and animals.
Silvers summarized how he and his girlfriend were recently attacked by one of Demers’ dogs in a town park and how Saydee had bitten both Silvers and his dog as his girlfriend looked on.
Testimony ran for almost two hours, with statements from Silvers, his girlfriend, the two police officers who had been called, Demers, and Demers’ lawyer. Silvers’ testimony was directly contradicted by Demers.
After testimony concluded, the board had a number of questions and reviewed the history of the dogs’ attacks upon others, their general menacing of the neighbors, and the damage they had been doing to the neighborhood.
Dog Officer Leona Pease was asked by the selectmen what she recommended, but she declined, noting only that Demers had not adhered to the town’s enforcement order.
Kane, reading from the law, noted that the board had only several choices on how to proceed. First was to determine if the dogs were just uncivil or were dangerous. The board deliberated and decided by a 4-0 vote that while Pesky is just troublesome, Saydee is indeed legally “a dangerous dog.”
Coupled with the fact that Demers has, after all this time, not complied with town orders to keep others safe from Saydee, and the fact that her testimony this night was believed to be untrue, the board agreed that Demers is an irresponsible dog owner. They then voted 3-0 to have the 60-pound Saydee humanely euthanized.
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