Dog Owner Keeps 5 Pit Bull Puppies
UPDATE 05/11/08: Several weeks prior to the attack that left three horses injured, authorities removed the same dog from the horse owner's property. The offending dog was returned to its owner. But the pit bull "got away" again, this time costing horse lives and the horse owner over $8,000 in damages.
Authorities euthanized the offending dog after the attack and also left the dog owner to care for 5 pit bull puppies. In about a year, all five puppies will be raring to go. The dog owner could not constrain one pit bull, how will he constrain five? Moreover, each puppy will have a clean slate: each dog must have 1-2 documented attacks before authorities can euthanize.
You see how existing dog laws grossly favor owners of dangerous dogs and not the victim?
DogsBite.org imagines that the horse owner Debbie Wilson, and neighbor to the dog owner, must be in an absolute state of shock.
05/11/08: Another Pit Bull Attacks Horses in Maryland
Harford County, MD - A pit bull, whose owner was previously cited for failing to secure his dog, has now attacked several horses. Of the various breeds that attack large livestock, DogsBite.org has only come across one that will attack a group of horses by itself: a pit bull. This aggressive trait in pit bulls stems back 2,000 years to the sport of bull and bear baiting.
Three separate attacks on horses (and herds) by these dogs have occurred in Maryland in the last 2.5 weeks alone.
The young male pit bull attacked the horses pastured at a local farm, injuring one so severely that it was put down. Another horse might not survive its injuries and a third has nearly 50 stitches on its face. Harford's animal control officer said that based on the dog's past history and witness accounts, the dog was destroyed for the safety of the neighborhood.
The dog was often seen running loose in the Forest Hill area near the Grier Nursery Road farm. Twice since March, Jonathan Russo, the dog's owner and the farm's neighbor, had been fined $60 for not securing the animal. Russo, who could not be reached for comment yesterday, received another $95 fine Thursday.
Minute fines hardly prevent future attacks. So far, Russo is out $155 dollars and the horse owner's loss is $8,500.
Phil Klein of Darlington witnessed the attacks on the horses and struck the dog with a metal pipe. He had been helping his 12-year-old daughter lead her horse to pasture when the dog ran toward them and lunged at the horse. As the horse ran away, with the dog in pursuit, Klein and his daughter, Danielle, raced to the barn, where she remained.
Klein grabbed a pipe and returned to the pasture. "The dog ran into a herd of horses and started attacking," Klein said. "One horse kicked him hard but couldn't stop him." The dog grabbed a 6-year-old Welsh pony by the nose and hung on, despite the horse's efforts to shake it off. It took 45 stitches to close the pony's bite wounds.
The dog then chased a 2-year-old Chincoteague pony and tore at its left hind leg so deeply that its survival remains in question. A 350-pound yearling sustained a fatal injury when the dog grabbed its foreleg and pulled it down. The deep bites exposed joints and tendons -- its leg was broken. Dell Bearsch, who was baby-sitting her three grandchildren at the time, saw the scene unfold.
"It was like a lion attacking gazelles," she said. "Thank God that the children were not out there."
Wilson, the horses' owner, credited Klein with saving the remaining animals. She has mounting veterinary bills, already in excess of $1,500 and has lost a horse worth about $7,000, she said. As of yesterday, Wilson said that Russo -- once again following the pit bull owner's Conduct Unbecoming Guide -- had not even bothered to contact her.
See all: Horse Attacks by Pit Bulls