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9/18/2012 7:17:00 AM
Wolf hunt lawsuit to proceed
Judge's Sept. 14 decision denies defendants' motion to dismiss

Dane County Circuit Court Judge Peter Anderson ruled Friday, Sept. 14, in favor of the plaintiffs, denying The Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) motion to dismiss the lawsuit challenging DNR rules establishing a wolf hunting season, and which authorizes the use of dogs to hunt wolves without necessary restrictions.

“The Court’s carefully reasoned legal analysis is entirely consistent with the ruling he issued two weeks ago when he granted plaintiffs’ request for a preliminary stay of the use of dogs for hunting and training purposes in the upcoming wolf hunt,” Jodi Habush Sinykin said. Sinykin is one of the attorneys representing the plaintiffs, in addition to Robert L. Habush of Habush, Habush & Rottier, SC, and Carl Sinderbrand of Axley Brynelson, LLP, 

“We look forward to proceeding with our case so that we can secure a judgment ensuring that DNR rules authorizing the use of dogs for wolf hunting fully comply with Wisconsin law and protect against excessively cruel and unreasonably dangerous confrontations between dogs and wolves.”

Plaintiffs’ filings in Dane County Circuit Court seek a declaratory judgment and permanent injunctive relief to stop the use of dogs for wolf hunting and to bar the training of dogs for wolf hunting, until reasonable restrictions are promulgated to provide adequate protections and safeguards in keeping with Wisconsin law.

The judge’s injunction on the use of dogs still stands.

Department of Natural Resources spokesman Bill Cosh said Anderson’s decision not to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the use of dogs in the Wisconsin wolf hunting season will not stop the department from moving forward with a hunting season.

“First and foremost, it is important for the 1,160 successful wolf license applicants to know that Wisconsin’s first modern day wolf season will continue.

“We will continue to work on that issue and try to find a resolution prior to the end of November when the use of dogs for hunting would have been allowed if the injunction had not been issued.

“In light of Judge Anderson’s decision to not rule in favor of the department’s motion to dismiss, we will continue to discuss our options with our legal team and develop a strategy in the coming weeks.

“The goal would be to ultimately resolve this issue prior to Nov. 26; the day when the use of dogs for wolf hunting would begin,” Cosh said.

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