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28 thoughts on “2012 Dog Bite Fatality: 1-Year Old Henderson Boy Killed by Family Dog

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  1. You see how this doesn't work? Dogs are not "children" or "people"! But hey, let's put costumes on both and by all means, have the 120lb dog piled on top of an adult for a "gentle giant" snapshot. You know the family said stuff like, "They're both my children," after the baby was born. And now they have one less child! (PS. If that dog is not wearing part of a matching costume and its a "service dog vest" well then, that just presents a whole new set of problems.)

  2. Violent breeds, violent deaths.

    The breeders still profit and refuse to take responsibility.

  3. As a Mastiff owner, the couch photo was a huge red flag. Mastiff's are pushy dogs and need constantly to know their place in the pack. No large dog like that should be laying on the owner. There are no "gentle giants" anymore than there are "nanny dogs".

  4. There are breeds that simply do not belong in homes with children, or in areas where children live and can be exposed to them.

    There are some "experienced adults only" breeds that are suited only for specialized living situations, not a suburb, urban areas, or the family home.

    Breeders have been very negligent for allowing these breeds to penetrate the family home.

    Lying to people and calling these breeds "nanny dogs" or "gentle giants" just gets people killed and sets up the dogs for failure.

  5. Children are not only killed by these breeds when allowed close contact.

    These breeds have actually broken through windows to do things like attack children walking down the sidewalk to the bus stop or playing in their own yards.

    Some breeds simply don't belong in family homes or neighborhoods.

    The breeders and sellers of these breeds blame the parents, but these breeds kill children even when kids have not been near them, and are not doing anything inappropriate.

  6. How horrendous! And I just can't wrap my head around the father's statement, talking about the loss of the dog in the same breath as the loss of his son. I just don't get that. And so many people comment on these horrible killings and attacks on children, "Poor dog has to pay with it's life for it's owner's stupidity." etc. "Poor dog" is the last thing that would ever come to my mind.

  7. DBO:

    Very nice touch by reaching out to both David Wilkes and Alexandra Semyonova. Gotta love her "hairdresser" comment. lol.

    Thanks for being the one of kind resource that you have become!
    Well done.

  8. I was wondering about the mother. She must be having a mental breakdown. It seems they had shared custody:
    "We were just about to put him to bed," around 10 p.m., when it happened, said his father, 29-year-old Christopher Shahan. He shares custody of Jeremiah with the boy's mother. The two aren't married.

  9. At least if the mother had reported to the court that the father's family had a breed dangerous to children in the house, social workers could possibly have intervened.

    Parents need to stick up for their children.

  10. The hypocritical 'humane' societies and their lying animal shelters, as well as money-grubbing television executives and pseudo-experts (including most of what touts a PhD nowadays, they too have to pay off their student loans) — they are largely culpable in this kind of case.

    They are the ones who tell parents they might as well get a Power Dog, since it ain't no different from any other dog and besides, Labradors 'bite' the most. Oops, I mean chihuahuas.

    They are the ones who do 'dog bite prevention weeks', but omit to tell that learning dog body language, approaching a dog right, all that useful stuff, doesn't apply to these weapon dogs. They are the ones who omit to tell that even after years of seeming okay, these dogs can suddenly, arbitrarily, decide to berserk — and that no matter how close you are when it does, you won't be in time to stop a child being maimed or killed.

    I hope the day comes when all of these liars are held accountable for the ravage they are committing among our children, and the grief they are causing for parents who believed them.

    • People and shelters are always begging others to adopt dogs from shelters, but the choice of breeds they have is nothing but pit and pit mixes, but the shelters always label them as "Lab Mixes" in an effort try to hide the fact that the dog is mostly pit, or full-blooded pit. If pits are my only choice of dog to rescue, I'll just go to a decent breeder for a breed I want, and pits are not on my list at all.

  11. Nice to see the Humane Orgs who have turned on the American People get slammed.

    It's almost as if they believe that if they can save mankillers from euthanization, there's no reason that Pit Bulls can't be berserking around America's neighborhoods.

    • I truly wish pits would be outlawed everywhere here in the USA. In my neighbourhood alone, within the past three months, pits have attacked and mauled four people and killed seven innocent pets. When is this country going to open its eyes and take notice of the menaces that they truly are? The pit advocates immediately resort to calling names and slinging insults at anyone who "picks" on their precious breed of monsters.

  12. The Associated Press, USA Today and others picked up this story up today!

    Clark County District Court Judge Joanna Kishner sided with Henderson city attorneys who argued the attack proved the 6-year-old mastiff-Rhodesian ridgeback mix is vicious, and that an uninvited third party with no ties to the family had no legal right to step in to try to save it.

    Way to go Judge Joanna Kishner (who volunteers at a cat shelter and her family adopts rescue animals)!

  13. It is not a coincident that all or nearly all dog breeds created not for a specific job requiring size but to be primarily companions are all relatively small and gentle.

    It seems that our supposed mastery of nature has removed our common sense.

  14. "the Lexus Project headed by attorney Richard Rosenthal"

    What is to be done when someone who is supposed to represent victims is putting himself in the victimizer role?

    Judges have already experimented with giving back these dogs that have killed. That has backfired on judges as the dogs attack again, end up caged and abused, or even in the hands of dog fighters or hoarders that pose as sanctuaries or rescues.

    The towns that transfer these dogs also maintain liability, no matter what papers are signed.

    There is a real question here of the viable professional status of an attorney, an officer of the court, attempting to endanger others and victimizing the victim with falsehoods.

    There is also a question here about what this "project" represents. No honorable, knowledgeable dog handler would ever consider anything other than euthanansia for a dog that has killed. What is behind this Lexus project? What is the real aim? Where does the money come from?

  15. Richard Rosenthal has also represented carriage horse DRIVERS.

    There has been a lot of incidents involving accidents, people hurt, animals killed, public safety issues related to the carriage horse industry. The drivers and owners, of course, oppose regulation.

    The carriage horse industry is a very anti humane type of lobby, also lobbying against regulation and affiliated with some of the same kinds of lobbies such as puppy mills, breeders, and the like that oppose regulation such as BSL, dangerous dog laws, etc.

    These groups lobby together.

    It is very important to research industry ties with all these groups. What may be claimed is not what may be going on behind the scenes.

  16. Good Lord Snack Sized! And I love it that Les Golden appears to be his own nuttery operation competing for funds with the Lexus Project! See May 9th post:

    Les Golden is NOT connected to the Lexus Project in any way, nor is he involved in Onion's defense in the proceedings we commenced to save the dogs life … Les has refused to account for the money he has collected for Onion and, in fact, has repeatedly referred to the money as HIS money. We therefore advise anyone who wants to help Onion to be wary who they contribute their money to.

  17. Thank you to Gary Wilkes and Alexandra Semyonova for your insights.

    The photos show this was definitely a family out to "prove" their dog was a gentle giant, and presumably knew full well the dangerous reputation of their breed mixes, and were set to prove the rep was a bad rap.

    The Lexus group is really terrifying. They are sending human killers to "sanctuaries" that have not been vetted, that fully believe that these dogs can be rehabilitated, and do in fact, also adopt out these dangerous dogs.

    If you look at the Blue Lion Rescue the Lexus group has lined up to take Onion, you will see that the owner is a misanthropic lunatic that makes Tia Torres look sane and reasonable by comparison, and I don't say that lightly.

    She appeals to people by saying get this dog that I have not trained and watch people pee in their pants when they see you together in obedience school. You'll bond with your dog over it. I'm not making this up.

    She is now adopting out NINE untrained, unsocialized, 1/2 grown neopolitan mastiffs of unknown breeding. She hasn't done anything with them and she'll hand them out as is.

    She makes up detailed stories of abuse that I don't think she could ever be in a position to know. This is the person whose judgment people are supposed to trust to handle dangerous dogs and keep them safe from the public.

  18. Has anyone seen the "mobile home + land" that the owner of Blue Lion, Lisa Kavanaugh, calls a "ranch" besides Snack Sized? I love the notice at the bottom: The blizzards of last year almost ended this blessed ranch. — Oops, there goes 125 giant breed dogs. (

    The history of Blue Lion is sobering (assuming it's true). It isn't that Kavanaugh isn't dedicated, it's that she appears to be a lunatic, fool idiot. See the lower part of this page — only seeing is believing ( That anyone could ever call this property a "sanctuary" is out of their minds.

    I can appreciate areas like Yoder, Colorado (,_Colorado), but just providing water to this amount of dogs per day — As it stands now, Lisa has to haul 300 feet of hose all around the 35 acre property to get everyone watered and that is hard even in the best weather. — is daunting, forget the reality of the harsh and often unpredictable weather of the region.

    Lisa commented that with the especially brutal winter last year, she had to dig out the dog houses by hand by herself multiple times and nearly lost several dogs. She added that if we have another winter like the last one, she wouldn't be able to continue.(

    But, but, then where would Onion and the 125 other giant breed dogs go?

    Oh and here we go, Lisa herself does not take very many Pit bulls, there is a Pit bull rescue on the neighboring property (they each have 35 acres) that is actually part of Blue Lion. Lisa loves to educate me about the true nature of Pit Bulls. Did you know that pit bulls used to be known as the “nanny” dog? It was because they took care of the children in the home — they were the nanny!

    My guess is both 35-acre poverty stricken rescues will go down in a mighty animal neglect case! Gotta wonder how Henderson animal control felt upon reading the Blue Lion web page. Gotta wonder how many judges in those other states even bothered to look into the group. Kavanaugh is running a wholly unsound "giant breed dog zoo."

    (And God only knows what she does with the horrendous amount of pooh these dogs produce on weekly and monthly basis! It's hard to believe Yoder can handle it!)

  19. This case is an illustration of what the behavioral sciences show us: behavior you reward will occur more frequently in future.

    First this Lexus project. Rosenthal shouldn't have been allowed to save that very first Greyhound, in particular considering his argument that it was the fault of the Pomerian's owner for not staying out of the way of the Grehound. He and the owner of the Greyhound were rewarded for *not* taking responsibility for the innate behaviors of the chosen dog; rewarded for stating that it was the victim's responsibility to avoid the dangers of someone else's conscious and voluntary consumer choices — not the responsibility of the consumer to control those dangers.

    In the case of the husky, the same behavior was rewarded again.

    So now, while Rosenthal admits it's innate (he calls it instinctive) in this Onion type of dog to suddenly execute sustained killing attacks, he and his clients are merely obeying the laws of behavior and doing what judges have rewarded before.

    It's good that the present judge is withholding the reward. Irresponsible behavior (including the very choice of type of dog) won't be rewarded — the dog won't be excused or saved. Behavior like Rosenthal's and his clients' won't be rewarded — the victims and society will have a voice above theirs. It doesn't matter that in this case the victims (excepting the child) were also the perps in their choice of dog. The message needs to be sent — by our legal system — that choosing this type of dog won't be rewarded, but rather rewards withheld in the sense that at the very least the dog will (humanely) die.

    If more judges follow, this law of behavior might start to operate re the whole screaming rescue-the-killer crowd, by no longer rewarding their histrionics; and by no longer rewarding their use of red-herring arguments (eg, whether the dog is to blame or deserves punishment) and of ever-shifting arguments (eg, not inherently dangerous, but then the next day inherent and instinctive).

    Dog kills human, dog dies. Application to the human of this bit of P+ or P- (depends on the case which it is for the humans, not talking about the dog here) might go a long way in stopping a lot of this irresponsible human behavior and the loss of life and waste of resources it's causing.

  20. P.S. I also mean to say: dog mauls human, dog dies. Unintentional omission there.

  21. This is a fairly common pattern at this point.

    Attention-getter and funds-beggar blames the innocent victim, makes threats on the court, engages other mentally ill people that live even in other countries to make threats on the court, wimpy judge caves in, and dog gets sent to A HOARDER OR ANIMAL ABUSER to torture and kill the long, slow way.

    Then it's out of sight, out of mind for the attention-getter who supposedly was trying to "save" the dog, only to let it die in some no kill hoarder sewer and no one even inquires.

    The attention-getter is on to a new marketing plan with a new dog, with new beggings for money, and new pretenses of "saving" dogs to actually kill in cruel ways later.

    Naive, lemming-like followers give attention and money to the grandstander and attention-getter. Everyone but the grandstander, living in an expensive house with a wealthy lifestyle, suffers.

    The dog dies forgotten by all, later, tortured to death.

    This scam seems to particularly prey on 20s something girls and sheltered housewives, who seem to have no idea they are being used by the rich.

    Set up a website, mouth off, tell lies, and cash in.

  22. I have a real issue in this particular case with a lawyer, an officer of the court, with a history of persecuting victims and telling lies to concoct a completely spurious "blame the victim" scenario.

    This is not appropriate behaviour for an attorney, particularly since there is personal fund raising attached to each attack on victims.

    There is constant activity demanding funds from the public for a variety of uses, and it appears that the court system is being used to prop up this business.

  23. That Blue Lion website is shocking. SHOCKING.

    Let's just call it what it is: animal hoarding.

    I would be very surprised if there was any meaningful oversight of the "unadoptable" dogs that were sent there by the Courts. If they were sent away, or got loose and ran away, who would know?

    No single person can care for 125 dogs. A staff of ten couldn't do it. You couldn't feed them on a daily basis, much less clean up their crap.


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