Breed Discrimination Forces Mark Buehrle to Spend Season Without Dog and FamilyPublished February 21, 2013
MLB pitcher Mark Buehrle has been known around the league as an adamant dog lover. After seven years of marriage with his wife Jamie, a passionate animal advocate, Buehrle himself has become a voice for the animals, speaking out on their behalf whenever he has the chance. In 2011, the family adopted Slater, an American Staffordshire Terrier who Jamie had fallen for after spending time with him at a rescue. He was rescued from a scheduled euthanasia, and finally given the chance to spend life in a forever-loving home.
The family's love for their dog seems to know no bounds, either. After Buehrle signed a four-year, multi-million dollar contract with the Miami Marlins, the pitcher made his residence in Broward County rather than Miami-Dade (which was closer to the ballpark) due to the county's breed discriminatory laws. After being shipped to the Toronto Blue Jays this off-season, however, Buehrle and Slater found themselves in the same boat. Pit bulls are banned throughout the entire province of Ontario, where Buehrle would play and live.
According to an ESPN article, Buehrle's family has stuck with Slater, despite the discrimination that the dog's been facing. They debated three different options for the upcoming season, all of which focused on keeping Slater happy and healthy: "1) They could live across the U.S. border in Niagara Falls or Buffalo, N.Y., and Mark could commute roughly 90 minutes each way to Toronto; 2) They could leave Slater in someone else's care for the entire season; or 3) Jamie Buehrle could stay behind in St. Louis with the rest of the family while her husband heads north to pitch for the Jays."
The family decided on the third option, and so Mark will be spending his next baseball season alone.
In a situation that might see many people give up their dog, it's refreshing to see the Buehrles do whatever they can in order to keep their canine. Realizing that their dog is a family member, the Buehrles are getting by and making do, even though circumstances for both Jamie and Mark will be considerably tougher, given that they also have a five-year-old son, Braden, and three-year-old daughter, Brooklyn, to take care of. The family also has three other dogs, Vizslas Drake, Diesel and Duke.
What are your thoughts on the Buehrles actions and doing whatever it takes to keep their canine? Are breed discriminatory laws justified? Tell us what you think in a comment.