Just days after the Tisbury selectmen made the difficult decision to ban a Siberian husky named Storm from town after he got loose on several occasions and caused problems in a residential neighborhood, the dog reportedly got loose again last Friday and killed four chickens on Chase Road.
In the wake of the August 15 attack, the dog’s owners, Ken and Nina Garde of West Spring street, have reportedly agreed to remove Storm from the Island. Mr. Garde, a member of the town board of health and public works commission, told town officials on Tuesday he will send Storm to a husky rescue organization off-Island in the hope that he can be rehabilitated and put up for adoption.
Mr. Garde was scheduled to pick Storm up from the Tisbury animal pound yesterday and take him off-Island.
One town selectman praised Mr. Garde for acting responsibly.
“This is an unfortunate series of events for everyone involved,” selectman Tristan Israel said. “[Mr. Garde] loved that dog. But on the other hand, this has been very difficult for the family who owned those chickens. I am happy Ken stepped up and volunteered to remove the animal . . . I am sure the decision was not easy.”
After repeated escapes earlier this year in which a number of birds were killed, the selectmen in June placed a six-month restraining order on Storm and said any breach of the order would result in the dog being banned from town. Storm has since escaped on at least two occasions; selectmen last Tuesday voted 2-1 to permanently ban the animal from town.
Three days later, Storm reportedly killed four chickens on neighbor Corinne Dorsey-Riseborough’s property and severely wounded two others.
According to the police report, animal control officer Laurie Clements was dispatched to 4 Chase Lane around 5 p.m. last Friday for a report that two dogs had attacked and killed several chickens. Officer Scott Ogden said in his report that a second dog, an eight-month-old female husky named Mousa that belongs to the Gardes’ daughter Rebecca, was also involved in the attack.
Ms. Clements reportedly told Officer Ogden that she arrived on the scene to find Storm and Mousa with chickens in their mouths violently shaking them from side to side. Rebecca Garde then arrived and assisted Ms. Clements in getting the two dogs into the animal control truck, the report said.
Officer Ogden later spoke with Ms. Dorsey-Riseborough, who said she went outside to chase the dogs away, “but the two animals growled at her menacingly,” the report said. Ms. Dorsey-Riseborough told police the chickens belonged to her son Toby, who planned to enter them in the West Tisbury Agricultural Fair this week.
“I observed four deceased chickens, two chickens that appeared to be in severe distress with blood coming from their backs, and a single duck trembling in the corner of the coop,” Officer Ogden wrote in his report. “I saw that the five-foot high fence around the chicken pen had been pushed to the ground by the two dogs and there were blood-soaked chicken feathers scattered throughout the pen from the violent attack.”
At a special joint meeting between Tisbury and Oak Bluffs selectmen held in executive session this past Tuesday, Mr. Garde was in the audience and asked selectmen if they could discuss the situation with Storm when they reconvened in open session, Mr. Israel said yesterday.
Ms. Clements, who was in the town hall on business at the time, also joined in the discussion. Mr. Israel said Mr. Garde told selectmen he had done an Internet search and found a husky rescue organization in Connecticut willing to take Storm and evaluate him for adoption.
Selectmen asked Mr. Garde to write a letter confirming that he will take Storm off the Island. Mr. Israel said if the dog returns to town in the future, it will immediately be placed into the custody of the animal control officer.