Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Ojai Valley, CA - Actor and citrus rancher Peter Strauss spent nearly half an hour in a confrontation with a raging pit bull. Strauss survived, but is left with injury and trauma. He describes the attack to Ojai Valley News:
While inspecting his orchards on Sunday, he saw the brown pit bull mix banging against the boards that separated his neighbor’s yard. Strauss could see the dog pull his head through, and thought, "My God, this dog is going come for me." The dog did -- he charged the 32-foot distance in seconds. Strauss hit the dog with his only available weapon, a clipboard.
The dog grabbed Strauss’ leg, furiously shaking his head. Strauss knew that if he went down to the ground, he was dead. He thought, "I’m going to die on my own farm like this." Strauss was able to grab a piece of wood to swing at the dog and fend him off. "I hit the dog as hard as I could," he said. "It just wasn’t enough. I would hit him, and he would just shake his head."
After 20 minutes of biting and lunging, the dog finally backed off. But the attack did not end here. When Animal Control officer, Mark Wisma, arrived 25 minutes later, both he and Strauss went searching for the errant dog. "The dog flew out of a different corner of my property," Strauss said. As the dog continued lunging and snarling, both Strauss and Wisma were vulnerable.
The dog, a neutered male adopted from a Los Angeles County Shelter, had no previous record of attacks, though Kathy Jenks, director of Ventura County Department of Animal Regulation, reported that it bit someone else that day. The dog will be euthanized. Strauss was treated and released from Ojai Valley Community Hospital’s emergency room with lots of stitches.
He said he was determined to keep an appointment to make a presentation to the Ojai City Council Tuesday night.
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| 3/26/2008 11:38 AM |
Another person in their daily routine, on their own property, attacked by a pit bull that breaks down a fence to get to the person...The theory that pit bulls are only "animal-aggressive" is clearly false. These dogs are consistently hunting human beings.
| 3/26/2008 3:25 PM |
Why don't they name the shelter that adopted out the dog? Doesn't the public have the right to know? There are six Los Angeles County shelters, and they all show numerous pit bulls up for adoption. On the LA county Dept of Animal control website, there is no indication as to how these animals are screened for adoption. There is no discussion of temperament testing adult dogs, how it is done, etc.
I think that is the story within the story. Los Angeles County has 363 dogs abandoned to the shelter system. They seem to be recycling dangerous animals back into the community. What do victims of dog attacks do when the animal control department is responsible for bringing dangerous dogs into their neighborhood? The county shelter system is encouraging the adoption of unstable, aggressive fighting breeds like pit bulls and Am Staffs. They obviously don't have the resources or skill to adequately evaluate all these dogs.
Victims should start suing the shelter systems that allow this to happen.If elected officials lack the political courage to act in the best interest of public safety, then victims will have to rely on civil litigation. Then the liability for shelter systems will become too great to adopt out dangerous dogs, and they will be forced to change their practices.