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Wed Nov 6, 2019, 07:35 PM

Texas: Retired police dogs had to be sold or destroyed under state law. Voters just changed that.

Source: Washington Post

Retired police dogs had to be sold or destroyed under state law. Voters just changed that.

By Karin Brulliard
11/6/2019, 6:00:40 a.m.

Police dogs spend all day working with handlers. They typically live together.

But when law enforcement K-9s in Texas have retired, they haven’t always gone home with their handlers. Laws in the nation’s second-largest state treated the dogs as surplus public property that, like firearms or police cars taken out of commission, needed to be auctioned off, donated to charity or destroyed.

That changed Tuesday, when voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment that allows dogs, horses or other law enforcement animals to be adopted at no cost by their handlers or other “qualified” caretakers.

It was backed by the Sheriffs’ Association of Texas, whose members were regularly perplexed by how to handle dog retirement legally — complying with laws that viewed the animals as surplus — and ethically, in ways that made sense to officers who view K-9 partners as family and departments who mark dogs’ retirements or deaths with ceremonies.

“It’s the right thing to do,” said Collin County Sheriff Jim Skinner, who chairs the legislative committee for the sheriffs’ association. “There’s been a lot of great dogs with great handlers, and the right thing should have been done by them. But it’s better late than never.”

-snip-

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/science/2019/11/06/retired-police-dogs-had-be-sold-or-destroyed-under-state-law-voters-just-changed-that/

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Reply Texas: Retired police dogs had to be sold or destroyed under state law. Voters just changed that. (Original post)
Eugene Wednesday OP
CaliforniaPeggy Wednesday #1
democratisphere Wednesday #2
braddy Wednesday #3
RainCaster Wednesday #4
Susan Calvin Wednesday #5
mysteryowl Wednesday #6
Rhiannon12866 Wednesday #7
LiberalFighter Wednesday #8
Eugene Wednesday #10
Susan Calvin Thursday #11
orleans Wednesday #9

Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 07:41 PM

1. Better late than never, indeed. I am thrilled to read of this great outcome. n/t

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Response to CaliforniaPeggy (Reply #1)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 08:01 PM

2. Totally agree.

All the Texas police animals should have a great retirement too! Thankful!

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 08:17 PM

3. Wish they would do this with non-govt. animal places, I need a kitten and a puppy but can't afford

to buy them from the rescue centers.

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 08:38 PM

4. This is great news!

While police dogs are great animals, they are not for novices. I have raised 5 generations of GSDs, several as Shutzhund, and I would not want to see a police dog go to a doggy neophyte.

This is a great change for those who have served a community and needs some final years of rest. Good for Tejas!

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 08:47 PM

5. Occasionally Texas does something right. nt

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 09:47 PM

6. Wow, democracy does work.

When given the chance, democracy works. Maybe we should put EVERYTHING on a ballot for the public to vote on!

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 10:17 PM

7. What?? I thought that they usually retired in the care of their partners.

I guess this is good news - geez!!

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 10:33 PM

8. Why part of their constitution?

Why didn't they make part of their state code?

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #8)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 10:57 PM

10. The state constitution regulates the disposition of surplus government property.

It's a power of the purse function. Until now, police dogs and horses have been considered property just like a patrol car. This has been a problem in other states too.

Per Propsition 10' ballot summary:

https://www.alamovotesblue.org/uploads/1/2/8/9/128992682/pros_and_cons_proposition_10.pdf

Background
• Law enforcement animals are considered ‘property’ of the state agency, county, municipality
etc.
• The Constitution requires all surplus governmental property to be auctioned, donated, or
destroyed.
• The proposed amendment would allow the animal to be transferred to its former caretaker at
no cost.

The U.S. constitution gives Congress that authority over federal property, and they changed the law for federal dogs in 2000.

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Response to LiberalFighter (Reply #8)

Thu Nov 7, 2019, 05:06 AM

11. Also the way Texas and its constitution works is stupid.

There are a lot of things in the Constitution that don't belong in that kind of document. Detail things . We vote on a raft of amendments pretty much every year.

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Nov 6, 2019, 10:50 PM

9. what assholes ever allowed this to happen in the first place

glad voters changed that.

shame on them for creating a law to kill these animals . absolutely horrifying and heartless!

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