Pit bull case adjourned; Rambo's owner can't visit
Mar 14, 2008 03:57 PM
There are at least two sequels planned in the tale of Rambo the alleged pitbull.
The Mississauga dog has been in custody since Christmas Day, when he bolted through an open gate and out of the back yard of his owner, Gabriela Nowakowska..
Nowakowska, 20, was in Mississauga court today to hear that a new court date of March 18 has been set for a pretrial hearing. At that time, her lawyer Anik Morrow said she expects another date to be set to determine the fate of the 11-month-old pet, who authorities say is a member of a banned breed.
If Rambo is eventually deemed to be a pit bull, he will be put down, after one of the first challenges to the province's ban on the breed.
Morrow said it's difficult to estimate when the legal battle will ultimately end.
In the meantime, authorities aren't letting Nowakowska visit Rambo, which is hurting the pet's socialization, Morrow said.
"It's a crucial period of his (Rambo's) development," said Morrow, whose fees are being paid by pit bull activists.
"After a dog is kept in the pound a certain period of time, it does become an aggressive dog," Morrow said.
Court heard that no Crown attorney has yet been appointed to the Rambo prosecution.
Rambo was born after a provincewide ban on new pit bulls took effect Aug. 29, 2005. By law, the city must put the dog down if he's found to be a pit bull, and not just a pit bull look-alike. .
Nowakowska faces charges of ownership of a prohibited animal.
"I'm sad and I'd really like my dog back," Nowakowska said outside court. "... He can't see me at all."
Asked what she misses most about Rambo, she replied, "Basically, just everything."
She said she hasn't considered buying a replacement pet.
"I love him and he's like my son," she said.
According to the Dog Owners' Liability Act, pit bulls born more than 90 days after the ban took effect must be put down.
In a similar case, a 4-year-old Toronto dog named Munchie was euthanized two weeks ago, after being found to be a pit bull.
Munchie had been in the pound since September, after authorities said he bit both a man and a dog.
Nowakowska's legal bills are being funded by donations. Her dozen supporters carried placards and displayed bumper stickers, with messages like "Profiling Kills Dogs" and "My Ontario Includes Pit Bulls."
Bless the Bullys