I think you missed my point. If a trapper shoots a dog in his trap, it makes the evening news. And the people who cry the loudest are generally the ones who would shoot the dog for spoiling a deer hunt. I don't think it's OK to shoot dogs. I have caught my share of dogs and released all of them unharmed, even to the point of loading one up and giving him a ride back to the owner's house. And, as usual the trapper (me) paid the price. I'll relate the story:
I was trapping on some land owned by the family of my sister's husband, specifically on one 80 acre section set aside for hay. I caught the neighbor's dog. I knew it was the neighbor's dog, because it was one of his (of about 30) heelers he uses to work cows. I also knew it was one of his dogs because when I drove by his house everyday all 30 of them would run out into the road (in front of me) to chase my truck. I released the dog and loaded him up and gave him a ride home and notified the neighbor's wife. Next day I was asked by my sister's father-in-law to pull my land sets cause the neighbor was upset that one of his VALUABLE dogs was caught. I pulled the sets.
But, as I was yanking each one of them I wondered to myself, "If those dogs are so !@##$%^&* valuable, why does he let them run all over the countryside to get caught in traps, or killed by coyotes or run over (my brother-in-law has accidentally run over several and not a word was said) or even get stolen?" :rolleyes: If they are so valuable...Why do you let them run loose?
Hal stated: "However, if that dog runs into a legally set trap, in the process, the hunter has absolutely no standing to be mad."
That is true. However, in everyone's experience, how often does it work that way? At best, we will find a nasty note, if the trap is not gone or destroyed.
I will continue to let the domestics go. I will do it because it's the right and ethical thing to do. But, I am not doing it out of sympathy for the animal or the owners. Apparently, trappers are held to a much higher standard of conduct. I guess I will try to maintain that standard, even if it is a pain in the butt.