Do you understand the seriousness of these charges?
Would you acknowledge for the record that what you are about to say is given of your own volition without coercion?
Do you want an attorney present?
I know this is difficult for you to talk about, but when did these killings begin?
It all started last spring when Charlie, the Guinea hen, moved out of our yard to find her own flock. After she was gone, a whole lot of magpies moved in to finish the food in her feeder and on the ground. Magpies are large black and white birds that are totally loud and obnoxious. They were walking around the yard, squawking, all arrogant.
The dogs and I were outside and I looked up just in time to see the dogs body slam one of the magpies to the ground and then…chomp, chomp…and one of the birds lay…dead.
Little Timmy, my tiny silver Poodle stud muffin, my dog with no sense of humor, negative prey drive. He doesn’t even like to get his paws wet.
He delivered the fatal chomps to the bird?
Yes. Now we call him “The Silver Assassin” and “The Jaws of Death.”
And then what happened?
He brought it to me.
How did you feel about that?
I was horrified. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Then I started laughing. He looked just like an airplane, a tiny fuzzy silver airplane with a frou-frou tail and long black and white wings skimming across the lawn, all proud of himself.
You thought that was funny?
Yes,… but still horrible.
Don’t you think that borders on black humor?
What did you do then?
I admonished them soundly and explained that this behavior was not acceptable. They seemed to understand.
Tell me about this dog pack.
They’re just little house dogs, companion animals, Poodles and mixed breeds, sweet dispositions, well behaved, low predator drives, good verbal skills. All four of them together don’t weigh 60 pounds.
But when Charlie was here they kind of melded into a real guard dog pack.
This “Charlie” was another dog?
No, Charlie was a young Guinea hen, but she thought she was a dog until she laid her first egg.
A Guinea hen, isn’t that something like a chicken?
Yes. We called her Psycho Chicken at first.
And she thought she was a dog?
Yes. She was like part of the dog pack. She would squawk from the tree like a sentry and the dogs would prowl the yard to protect us from invaders. We have a six-foot redwood fence around the yard. They learned to be a guard dog pack that way.
These “invaders” were birds?
No, mostly cats or a person walking down the alley. There were no other birds in the yard when Charlie lived here.
I’m getting confused. Can we get back on topic?
Were there more instances of this carnage in your backyard?
I don’t recall.
More than five?
More than ten?
I don’t recall
When was the next time?
A few days later. I heard some squawks in the yard and when I got out there, a dead magpie was lying on the ground with the dogs standing around it.
And what did you do?
I yelled at them. I made it very clear that if this behavior continued, there would be severe consequences.
What consequences did you have in mind?
I didn’t have a clue.
Did you try to punish them?
Like what? Take away their Game Boys? They’re dogs.
Were the deceased all magpies?
Mostly, but then they switched to blue jays sometime during the summer.
Do you keep a birdbath, feeder, anything that would lure the birds into your yard?
Why didn’t you stay out in the yard and stop this from happening?
It didn’t matter. Once I was outside stripping paint off a garage sale bookcase. When I heard a squawk and looked up, they had sent yet another bird to the Great Aviary in the Sky. Another time the deed was done around the corner where I couldn’t see them.
Why don’t you keep them in the house?
I guess I could, but they keep begging to go outside. They enjoy patrolling the yard. They whine and scratch at the door. They turn in circles. They do little wee wee dances. They need to go out for, you know, business purposes. We go for dog walks and runs, but they still want to protect their yard.
Besides they have tags that jingle and I even put bells on them. So I thought the stupid birds would spread the word and finally learn to stay away from them. We would go for a long time without spilling blood…but then…
And tell me what happened today?
I was in the house and I heard the familiar squawking that I have come to dread. When I went out the dogs were standing around the patio. They looked at me all innocent, like, “What?”
Then one of them looked over at the little well where the water pipe for the faucet comes up and…
You checked the well?
And what did you find there?
There were feathers attached to a bird that showed no life signs.
What did you do?
I asked what happened to the bird.
“The circle of life.”
“Bird, what bird?”
You didn’t believe them?
So your dogs are not only murdering but now they are hiding the bodies?
All right. I know this has been difficult. I’m sure you feel better making this confession, but I’m afraid I will have to send in a report. You live in…uh, it says here Malaysia. Is that right?
Thank you for your time, Miss, uh…Miss Doe. I think we have all the information we need. Someone will be contacting you soon.