Phineas the Dog: Family, Supporters Fight to Stop Salem Officials From Putting Pet to Sleep
Simon adds of the city's meeting tonight, "I'm hoping this is a sign that they're coming to their senses, and I'm hoping this whole matter is just really a bizarre case of misunderstanding.... It would be awfully cruel to kill a dog...because of pride."
The Missouri Department of Agriculture reportedly also recently said that Phineas is not vicious after a visit.
Salem mayor Gary Brown, who made the initial determination that the dog should be euthanized, says that he was simply following city ordinances, and he is considering the information presented to him.
"My decision was based on three bites and the last bite being the worst one," Brown tells Daily RFT. "That was the decision that I made. If the judge goes against me, so be it."
"I have to stand by the city ordinances," he continues. "Based on the information I had at the time, the dog would be a threat."
Brown says he has received hundreds of e-mails from angry people across the world who want to see Phineas saved. (A change.org petition has more than 15,000 signatures.)
"I respect their opinion," he says, adding, "my response is I don't want to kill the dog."
He says the city is taking care of the dog and keeping him safe (though this has been disputed).
Simon says he hopes that officials tonight decide to end this drama and drop plans to put Phineas to sleep.
"People from all over the world are irate about this," he says.
Here's the letter from the family of the girl Phineas bit urging the city not to euthanize the dog (with the signature at the bottom redacted).
And here are testimonials from various professionals and others who have met Phineas, courtesy of Simon.
And here is the temporary restraining order.