Kickstarted Documentary About Puppycide Close to Donor Goal Needs Lots of Money

Filmmakers explore law enforcement shootings of dogs


An Aussie Shepherd is a threat only to people who are afraid of being loved.
Facebook "Dogs Shot by Police" gallery

The folks at Ozymandias Media are less than $15,000 short of their $100,000 donation goal to looking for donors fast to help produce Puppycide, a documentary about the terrible trend of law enforcement officials unnecessarily shooting citizens' dogs, claiming (usually incorrectly) that the pets were behaving in a threatening fashion.

The studio has 15 days left to reach its goal of $100,000. They currently stand at less than $15,000. Their Kickstarter page describes more about their project:

When we first learned about puppycide, we assumed that these must be cases of police responding to threats on their lives from dogs trained to attack by criminal owners. That couldn't be further from the truth. We found scores of videos and news stories about dogs who were laying down, tails wagging, even running away but still shot by officers who used lethal force as their first and only response. 

We were very upset by the footage and stories and felt a documentary on the topic was in need. We took our cameras on the road, reaching out to victims and capturing their experiences.

We also began exploring the police perspective, which is a vital part of this story. While some incidents involve callous officers too quick with the trigger, we found the issue is much bigger than that. The lack of repercussions, policy changes, new equipment, or apologies, demonstrate how systemic this problem is. Experts have explained in interviews how police officers are not currently offered the simple training, tools, and support they need to change.

The trailer features a couple of puppycide cases familiar with regular Reason readers and an appearance by former Reason editor and puppycide expert Radley Balko. Also on the Kickstarter page is a gallery of photos of dogs that have been shot by police if you feel like spending Halloween in a deep, angry funk.

As the trailer shows, they've done a lot of work on the documentary so far. This remaining $100,000 is, they explain, to "travel to incidents as they occur; step-up our inquiries through Freedom of Information requests of police records; shoot more interviews with owners, advocates, public figures and police; research and acquire footage of puppycides caught on tape; interview experts on dog behavior; participate in police ride-alongs and trainings; and find a home for the finished film."

The Kickstarter page is here.

More Reason on puppycide here.

UPDATE: As Reason commenter np  noted, I initially had the donor numbers totally backwards. They've only raised $15,000 of the $100,000 they need.

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  1. I may kick in a few bucks, even though I will never have the stomach to watch it. This may be the mother of all nutpunches.

    1. I assure you it is. I foolishly looked up the trailer on youtube and had to turn it off. I couldn't even begin to control the rage if something like that happened to one of my dogs. Jeebus I can't stand pigs. I'll shell out a few bucks, but I can't watch the film.

  2. And a chocolate lab is only a threat to people who treats in their pockets.

    Also, is that a cat in the photo album? Who the hell would feel threatened by a cat? Oh right, America's Finest would.

    1. Cats are fairly notorious obstructors of justice.

  3. I think you have it the other way around. It's $14k+ pledged so far out of the $100k needed. Anyways, I put in a bit myself.

    1. Oh ... crap. How did I get that completely backwards?

      I am journalist. Me smart!

      Working on correcting.

      1. That's it. I'm leaving Reason for the Mother Jones boards because I value truth and facts.

        1. KOCHSPIRACY! It's about time you caught on...

          1. At Reason I just don't hear enough about the wonders of economic multipliers and the social justice. This place is lame.

  4. What happens to your money if they don't get enough to make the film?

    1. hookers and blow

      1. For me or the film maker? That distinction really matters before I donate.

        1. I donated - it says my card will only be charged IF they reach the fundraising goal. If not - no charge.

          If they're lying - $20 exposure is within my "I got screwed" tolerance limit...:)

          1. They aren't. That's Kickstarter's policy and the film-makers have no say in the matter.

            1. Good to know for future reference - thanks!

          2. Good for you. I have to talk to the wife and see what she is willing to give.

    2. For every day that the monetary goals are not reached God SWAT kills a kitten.

    3. The money is only given to them if they reach the target. If they don't reach the target, you pay nothing and they get nothing.

    4. The whole point of kickstarter is the money is not charged unless they reach their goal.

      1. Thanks menacing and apatheist.

  5. As the owner caretaker of 5 vicious killers puppies, this always hits close to home. The most "ferocious" of our dogs are the two little ones - a miniature Dachshund/Papillon mix, and a Jack/Rat Terrier mix. They bark and growl at "new" people....and then run behind me and imply "Ok, now YOU handle the threat...."

    The two Labs are...Labs. Therefore, ripe for shooting, because they're HUGE and utterly harmless and run TO people...to sniff them, rub against them, get petted, hopefully get offered a treat.

    Anyway - Ima send some money.

    Thanks for the perceived nutpunch, assholes! And good luck to the moviemakers.

    1. Yeah, stopped by a co-workers house yesterday. They have a beautiful german shepherd who gave two quick "hey new guy" barks and jogged over to give me a pro forma smell before putting her head under my hands for petting. Definitely shootable behavior.

      1. Yeah, since we've gotten dogs, I'm SO much smarter about what to do/not do around other people's dogs.

        So I SRSLY "get" that some people can get intimidated/scared by what may be harmless behavior - cause if you don't know, you don't know.

        But shooting fucking chihuahuas and miniature poodles and terriers and dogs on their backs and running away? FUCK you, pig.

  6. These pigs are a bunch of thrill-killing assholes.

  7. Done and distributed well, this documentary could actually affect change. People see pets as part of the family. Then again, police generally don't give a shit what you think.

    1. could actually affect change

      Can we make this the new "towing the lion"?

      1. Dunno, I feel strangely uneffected by this.

        1. My lack of effect has me feeling...nothing

    2. Police don't kill pets despite people seeing them as part of the family, they kill pets because people see them as part of the family.

  8. I've mentioned this previously, but my neighbor's large dog ran straight at me the first time he saw me (or I him). I held out my hand, the dog came to an abrupt stop, he sniffed me and got a scratch on his head, and went back to his owner.

    The vast majority of dogs are well socialized, because they are not being raised by dickheads. I wonder how much of the puppycide is due to the cop perception that almost everyone but them is scum.

    1. the cop perception that almost everyone but them is scum, like them.


      1. Projection or Napoleon complex? Or perhaps every one fancies himself Judge Dredd.

    2. "I get to shoot something and don't even have to fill out paperwork. FUCK YEAH!


    3. I wonder how much of the puppycide is due to the cop perception that almost everyone but them is scum.

      Raises hand meekly?

      Um....all of it?

    4. My neighbor's stupid dog comes barking and charging at me every time. But not in a mean way. She's just dumb and excited. All she wants to do is sniff and lick. They also have a giant lab who can be kind of dick. He's settled down, but I considered shooting him with a BB gun a couple of times when he stood in my yard, well away from his own, barking at me like he was going to do something if I came on the grass from the driveway. He is 80 lbs of dog and I wouldn't want to mess with him.

      Not being a sociopath, I just let him do his thing, and the next time I saw my neighbor, mentioned it to him. No problems after that.

      Even if I had hit him with the BBs, it wouldn't be because I want to hurt him, just that it isn't okay for him to defend my yard from me. But his owner isn't a jerk, so it all worked out.

      1. So you're saying that if the cops ever come to your neighbor's house, their dog is a good as dead.

        1. Both dogs, yeah. And even though the big one is kind of a dick, I don't wish him dead.

  9. Experts have explained in interviews how police officers are not currently offered the simple training, tools, and support they need to change.

    Oh, fer fuck's sake. Why is it that apparently we don't expect cops to have the most elementary skills, or simple human decency, unless it is trained into them and they are given "tools" and "support".

    1. Did the schlubs who were hired off the street before "police professionalization" routinely shoot family dogs?

      Because none of the older people I know seem to recall that ever happening unless the animal was rabid or actively attacking someone.

      And those cops only had a truncheon, cuffs, a revolver, and jack shit training

      1. Back then it wasn't a war! It's a war now! There's an entire underclass who is ready to ambush and murder police! Police can't tell if someone is a member of that underclass or not, so for officer safety they must treat everyone as the enemy until they prove otherwise! Officer safety!

        1. The reason people want to murder police is because police kill dogs. Most people, present company excepted, like the police roughing up low-lifes because we all hate some people. Very few of us, even those that don't own pets, don't hate animals. Animals are innocent unless they're starving.

          1. My cop-hate started when I watch the Boulder PD break up an impromptu jam session by smashing the instruments and bloodying the musicians. It was completely unnecessary. It was violence for the sake of violence. It was solidified when a member of that same department came up behind me in a dark alley and begged me to give him an excuse to beat me to a bloody pulp. Thugs. That's all they are.

    2. It's bribery. We mostly can't touch them legally, especially when their victims are property or animals. They're unamenable to public shaming or legal injunctions or competition. All we can do is offer up money for absurd work holidays training programs and pray they take pity.

  10. The biggest danger to officer safety is these a-hole cops plugging dogs. I made the mistake of reading Baxter's (Aussie above) facebook page. Gated community security guard calls cops because dog is loose with front door open. When cop shows up, it's inside, but cop yells for one of the occupants to come out immediately so dog, of course, comes running out also. Cop begins shooting. Homeowner returns fire with better aimed shots.

    Oh wait, that last line didn't happen this time. One of these days it will though.

    I do have to disagree with Scott slightly. As an Aussie owner myself, they are fiercely loyal and if they perceive their pack is threatened, they would do everything they could. Like this guy:


    1. Oh wait, that last line didn't happen this time. One of these days it will though.

      When it does the entire family will be slaughtered, and nothing else will happen.

  11. C'mon, guys. Hit that Kickstarter page. This needs to happen.

    Oh, and bigshot Reason Foundation types? Dig deep, and kick in five figures. This is textbook ground-up civic activism in the service of exposing the abuses of the Almighty State. Isn't that what all your money is supposed to be for?

    1. Alright, I threw some in (in whatever tense is appropriate for "I committed to possibly having my card charged in the future").

  12. http://books.google.com/books?.....e&q=police professionalism militaristic&f=false

    Interesting read on how progressivism and police "professionalization" turned our cops into even more militaristic assholes than they were before.

    1. Oops. Don't think that link worked right.

      try this:


  13. One problem is that in most jurisdictions the recovery for a tortuously killed or injured dog or cat is their 'market value' and not any 'sentimental' value of the animal (or even something like what you paid for in the care of the animal, extrapolated), so even if you won, say, a 1983 suit against the police for wrongful destruction of your property very few would find it worth the lawsuit.

    1. What about charges of animal cruelty against the officer?

      Haaaaaaaaa ha ha ha ha! Charges against an officer? Haaaaaa ha ha ha!

      I'll be here all week. Don't forget to tip the waitress.

      1. They should be charged with reckless endangerment as well, for firing a weapon when no threat was present. One can dream...

      2. Law applying to cops, my you are sarcasmic 😉

        1. When it is some poor defendant's word against an officers authorities talk about the superior 'new professionals' judgment, but when the officer does something seemingly rotten we are told they should not be held to a higher standard than anyone else. Sheesh.

    2. Yeah - we'd avoid *all* of this if cops weren't dicks and didn't fucking shoot dogs like they were a carnival game.

      But they are, so - dead dogs gonna be dead.

    3. There's a lot of variation by state, but if the fuckers shoot your dog in front of you, you've probably got a good shot at recovering for "intentional infliction of emotional distress."

  14. Shared on Facebook, which apparently means every dog owner in the world will know by the end of today. Hopefully Halloween doesn't distract people. Maybe I'll post again tomorrow to be safe.

  15. I'd like for there to be a national registry of dog-killing cops.

  16. Besides the USA, what other countries is this a problem in?

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