Hawaiian Animal Agencies
Honolulu, HI - In light of the recent fatality of 2-month old Iokepa Liptak by the family's dog in Waianea, we draw your attention not only to the Hawaiian Humane Society's apparent cover up of the breed by labeling the dog a "mixed breed," instead of a pit bull-mix, but to other island animal agencies as well. There seems to be a trend in the area of labeling pit bulls as "mixed breeds."
In 2004, Truston Liddle, 17-months old, was killed by a "mixed breed" chained dog on the island of Kauai. We did not find any news articles that designated the dog as a pit bull-mix. The Kauai Human Society may have successfully masked the true breed in this case. This perhaps was done in direct response to the number of island children afflicted by pit bulls in the years leading up to the tragedy.
Dog Kills Toddler in Rural Kauai
A neighbor's dog attacked and killed a 17-month-old Moloaa boy Saturday afternoon, according to Kauai police. Police said the child, Truston Liddle, suffered severe injuries to the head, neck and chest about 5 p.m. Saturday. He died in the emergency room at Wilcox Memorial Hospital...
Acting Kauai Police Chief Clayton Arinaga said yesterday the dog -- a mixed breed weighing 40 to 50 pounds -- belonged to the boy's next-door neighbor, and there is no fence between the two homes. The area is rural and most residents have small farms. Police said they did not even have an exact street address for the boy's home as of yesterday...
The dog was seized by a Kauai Humane Society animal control officer and is being held at the humane society shelter in Puhi. Becky Rhoades, executive director of the Kauai Humane Society, said she was not allowing access to the dog. "He's a very stressed dog," she said yesterday...
Later in the article, Rhoades says, "The most aggressive dogs are un-neutered, male dogs that are kept on a chain for most of their lives, she added, noting that the dog that attacked Liddle is a male mixed-breed dog." The writers of the article, Anthony Sommer and Rosemarie Bernardo, fill out the larger picture by including other island attacks that ended in severe injury and death.
- Jan. 31, 2004: Nine-year-old Ikaika Rhine, of Waianae, was attacked by what was described to be a pit bull. He suffered serious injuries to his head, neck, arms and legs. The dog's owner was issued a dangerous-dog citation.
- Jan. 27, 2003: Five-year-old Trevor Sifton, of Kihei, Maui, was attacked by a male, mixed-breed pit bull that had leaped over a fence. Trevor suffered multiple bites to his arm, calf and face. The dog was euthanized.
- July 23, 2002: A 2-year-old boy was mauled by a pit bull at his baby sitter's home in Pukalani, Maui, and suffered bites to his neck, head and face. The dog had been tied to a tree, and the boy was playing nearby. The 6-year-old male dog was euthanized.
- July 30, 2001: Six-year-old Alex Pyle, of Makawao, Maui, was mauled by a male Akita in his neighbor's yard. He suffered wounds to his head, cheek and arms. A lethal injection was administered to the dog days after the attack.
- June 9, 2001: Eighteen-month-old Tyran Moniz-Hilderbrand was attacked and killed by a pit bull in the Hawaiian Acres subdivision in Puna. Tyran's father killed the animal with a pickax, and the toddler's mother suffered from wounds to her arms and legs.
A separate article lists that in 1981, a 6-year-old boy was killed by a pit bull in Kaimuki.
10/06/08: 2008 Fatality: Infant Dies After Being Mauled in Waianea
09/30/08: 2008 Fatality: 5-Year Old Girl Killed by Pet Pit Bull in Simi Valley