Dog's Best Friend
"I love them. It's the only dogs I've ever owned in my life was Germans." Tumey said.
However, his family of five dogs has dwindled to three after a brush with local health department officials.
It is easy to see why some of Tumey's neighbors might feel threatened by these big dogs like Smokey. He said animal control came and got his dogs six months ago when they were only puppies
Animal control captured the smallest dog Mimi, and kept her in a holding cage at the Central Missouri Humane Society. When Tumey picked her up, he said he noticed she walked with a limp and had a cough. These are problems he says she didn't have before the encounter.
"Well, somewhere down the line you broke her front toe. Somewhere down the line you ended up doing something to her. She ended up with kennel cough. She ended up with a respiratory throat infection and she ended up with Parvo. This is the only place she could've got this from," Tumey said.
While Mimi was on the mend, two of the other puppies caught Parvo. Within three days, both were dead.
Tumey said his dogs had their shots.
The Central Missouri Humane Society said they could not have done much more, so blame does not rest on their shoulders.
"We are an open door facility, so we never turn an animal away. If 15 unhealthy dogs were brought in today, we would have to take them. It's just really unfortunate because kennel cough and Parvo virus can be prevented. Those vaccinations, 99 percent of the time will work," said Humane Society Executive Director Patty Forister.
"I can't say anything about that case at this moment since it is going through the legal process," said Health Department Public Information Specialist, Deidre Wood.
Now Tumey is left with his memories of the dogs and the hope that the municipal court rules in his favor.
"I have to speak up for them, because they can't speak for themselves. I'm going to make sure that my voice is heard," said Tumey.
Tumey is scheduled to be in court on November 20th.