The message announces that Oct. 31 is “National Kill a Pit bull Day.” It is attributed to Terry Jordon, a Slater, Mo., council member who helped write an ordinance to control vicious animals.
On Wednesday, Sept. 19, the animal shelter employee showed the message to shelter director Alison Smith.
“I was appalled, disgusted and angered,” Smith said, categorizing the text as “inciting a hate crime.”
She reported the message to the Walker County Sheriff’s Office, which has filed a report.
The message reads, in part: “Their owners like to brag about (their) high threshold for pain. So don’t worry about them suffering, they can take it.”
The criminal suggestion to beat or poison pit bulls is also circulating on Facebook and originated in Texas, according to a deputy who spoke with Smith. The deputy, a pit bull owner, said he was offended by the post.
Beating or killing any dog, as the text suggests, would result in felony animal cruelty charges and jail time.
As a controversial breed, pit bulls frequently are maligned as a dangerous breed for the instinctive fighting nature of the dog, which has become a breed of choice in dog fighting circles, Smith said.
“These dogs, I don’t have a problem with themselves. It’s generally the (owners) that are the problem,” Smith said.
She has a pit bull mix, one of four dogs she keeps at her residence. She took the dog in as a puppy nearly seven years ago after being one of three dogs found along a road by a resident.
“He is the sweetest and most obedient dog I have,” Smith said.
Smith is warning pit bull owners to secure their dogs near the Halloween holiday as a precaution.