Monday, 17 March 2008

Death Row Dogs - falls short

I have to say I was a bit disappointed - it ended abruptly. You felt there was going to be another 15 minutes where a conclusion would have been reached. That could have been a brilliant TV show with a bit more effort. For a start, why did it finish when it did? Did they run out of funding or just lose interest when they realised most of these people were probably going to eventually get off as they were decent, honest dog owners in the middle of obvious injustice. That those were probably going to be the only people who would ever agree to be filmed. I think they'd hoped for more tears at pet dogs being destroyed. In the planning meeting they'd have expected more drama and they'd have been disappointed how slowly things moved.
The show's transmission was delayed - originally it was going out in December - but by hanging on for a few more months did they get any of the stories properly concluded? Not really unless you think that final frame of update was sufficient - even that was badly out of date.
A missed opportunity.
I expect the problem stems from the planning stage. The researchers had no idea what the key dog injustice issues were before the started and by the end of it I'm still not convinced they got it. These stories are not easy to film as everyone spends so much time in limbo just waiting for something to happen. No one can capture that - but thinking you can follow even a handful of stories all the way though without setting aside at least a year to film was the other big mistake.
Some of the unchallenged details on the Two poodle Martyr story made me cringe - it's a good job they had already got off by the time it was transmitted. And did they make it clear it wasn't a Dangerous Dogs Act case after all - that the police had made a mistake that first night when they charged Peter!
There's room for a much more searching documentary that looks with fresh eyes at dogs in society, how and why everything is changing and what realistically needs doing.
Knee jerk legislation hasn't worked - that's black and white as more people are bitten than ever before. Children are certainly no safer.
Someone needs to sort out why people aspire to acquire dogs they can't control. Ban one breed and they'll just move on to another. A realistic look at what is going wrong and hopefully a road map out of there.
Just as we're making it hard for people to own gas guzzling cars maybe we need to make people think twice before they acquire a high performance dog? Not a dog tax - just some accountability. The Dog wardens association have some great ideas. Like all dogs having to have 3rd party insurance - like you have with cars! Accountability that protects others if things go wrong.
No one seems to hear them though. It's a simple idea and gives them the reason to knock at the door when someone says a dog is out of control. Not just a silly dog licence that costs more to collect than it raises. Sounds like the start of a plan and as they're on the streets shouldn't we be listening to them?

1 comment:

Chapstaff said...

That documentary shouldn't have been aired until there was a successful conclusion. I felt it was left up in the air.
The Ireland lady with the 2 Pit bull types got her dogs back didn't she? & ended up having to put one to sleep as it turned nasty with her other dog after the long time away.

It didn't mention what happened with Jill & Peter being found with no case to answer.

A bit pointless showing it really.