Rdfx: "One can see that the people in office go with the way the public feels…"
I do sense that you expressed that view from a position of negativity since you ended it with "..and not science or facts."
Here, I think you (we) find ourselves on the flip side of our representative form of government. "The people in office" are determined by "the way the public feels" in that, by and large, the person who receives the most votes, gets the job. And if "the people in office" do not "go with the way the public feels", then they will not be in office long.
I'm not being argumentative here, just trying to point up a fact. Trapping is not a right, it is a privilege, and we are granted the privilege to trap by our fellow citizens. (Those of you who have this "right" under your state constitution, should keep in mind that the same voter generated "amendment" process that put it in your constitution can be used to take it out again.)
These voters are the same "public" that is referred to above. And if they decided they don't want people to trap, they and the people they have placed in office (legislators) could bring a stop to it.
This is why the problem with errant "pets" is a very
important issue to trappers. We try to avoid these animals in the first place. We also endeavor to use traps and methods that will not prove injurious to these animals, so they may be released uninjured if they are accidentally caught.
This brings me to a point, that may be cross-grained to some of the things said here. Most of the time, when I catch a dog, I don't know where that dog came from. I won't set a trap anywhere close to an occupied dwelling, unless those people have already assured me that they don't have any pets.
I use small traps, that won't injure a dog. I can turn that dog loose and in a very short period of time, it will be fine. I suspect that in many cases, the dogs owner doesn't even know anything is out of the ordinary, except the dog might have a sore paw for a day or two.
I am under no legal obligation to seek out the owner of this dog, and as I said in a vast majority of these cases I really have no idea where the dog came from. Something I will not
do, is run up and down the street pounding on doors asking, "Hey, did I trap your dog?" That's really not the kind of image I want to present to the "public".
I think in many
cases, trappers are causing themselves, and the trapping community, a whole lot of needless trouble by trying to "do the right thing". If your traps are legally set, and if you are under no legal obligation to report the capture of a wandering dog, and if the dog is not injured, I recommend you just turn it loose and walk away.