Now is probably not the time for Michael Vick to own a dog

By Doug Halberstadt
Sports Columnist

I’ve heard some talk recently about Michael Vick wanting to get a pet dog. I’ve also heard that the terms of his release from federal prison prohibit him from owning a dog until sometime in 2012. Many of the people I’ve heard discussing this issue don’t feel he should ever be allowed to own a dog again for the rest of his life.

Based on his past, I’m not sure Vick should have the privilege of owning another animal of any type. In his former attempt at dog ownership, he proved his lack of respect and responsibility for the numerous animals he either owned or had under his care at his home. Granted, he has served his time for those transgressions; however, I’m not sure he deserves a second chance when it comes to this issue.

Putting aside the fact he formerly raised dogs for sport fighting and did heinous things to those dogs that didn’t win or weren’t up to his expectations, I still don’t think he should own a dog. He is a quarterback in the NFL. When does he have time to sufficiently care for a dog? He doesn’t. Unless he has help from someone, there is no way his schedule would allow him to be a responsible pet owner.

His travel schedule alone would automatically disqualify him, in my book. He’s hardly ever home during the NFL season. For eight of the 16 weeks of the regular season, he’s gone for days at a time. When they do have home games, he’s got to be away from home for long hours each day. Granted, he could board the animal or have a friend or family member care for the pet, but I hardly think Vick’s first priority would be caring for Fido.

I would love to have a dog, but even with my schedule, I don’t think it’s fair for an animal to be left alone for long periods of time. Therefore, I’ve made the decision not to own a dog. Until his situation is different than it currently is, Michael Vick should make that same decision.

From the Jan 5-11, 2011 issue

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