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March 10, 1945

SENTIMENTALISM ABOUT DOGS

JAMA. 1945;127(10):592-593. doi:10.1001/jama.1945.02860100036010

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Abstract

A bull terrier, a family pet, in an unexplained outburst seized and killed the 21 month old daughter of its owners by shaking the child until its neck was broken. The incident may be dismissed as an accident, tragic and horrible. Admittedly large numbers of instances are available in which dogs have been faithful companions, guardians and sometimes martyrs to the interests of their owners. In the present instance the owners of the dog concluded that the dog was dangerous and that the only thing to do was to have himkilled. The destruction of the dog is to be accomplished by humane society authorities and apparently is a calmly reasoned act, all the more remarkable in view of the emotional tension in which the stricken parents must be living.

When this decision was reached by the parents, numerous self-styled dog lovers apparently deluged them with telephone calls, letters and telegrams;

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