Police perpetrated puppycide (PPP) is a significant problem in the United States. The problem is so widespread that the term puppycide was coined to describe it:
Stories like Smith’s happen all the time. They’re so common that they’ve become known by the grim moniker puppycide. There’s a whole category on Reason’s website for such events, a 16,000-person-strong Facebook group that tracks local media reports of them, and even a database that attempts to collect information on dog shootings nationwide. But no one knows how many dogs are in fact killed by police every year.
A Justice Department official speculated in a 2012 interview with Police magazine that the number could be as high as 10,000 a year, calling it “an epidemic.”
Why are so many dogs being killed by police? Many of these incidents involve dogs that were leashed or kenneled, which leads one to think that many law enforcers simply enjoy killing dogs. The usual schtick we’re fed when these PPPs occur is the time honored “officer safety.” Officer safety are two magical words that when combined are supposed to absolve an officer of any excessive use of force.
At some point people need to ask why the magical words “officer safety” needs to be thrown around so often, especially when we consider the fact that being a police officer isn’t all that dangerous.