UPDATE 06/11/14: Holden William Garrison of Davisburg died Sunday morning after being viciously attacked by his family's dog. At the time of the attack, the baby's uncle was holding the child while on the couch with his mother sitting nearby. The dog suddenly jumped up and latched onto the infant's head and throat. The child's father "pried the dog's jaw open" to free the baby. The child died after being transported to two hospitals. The dog is being euthanized today.
The boy’s funeral service will be held at 1 pm on Friday at Coats Funeral Home in Clarkston.
**Clarification** The owner(s) of the dog have been reported in multiple ways: the child's family, the child's parents and the child's uncle. We believe the most accurate is the child's parents and that the dog had lived with the baby's parents for at least two years, as stated in early news reports (See more information in the comments section). Also, the dog was not euthanized today as reported earlier by the Daily Tribune. The dog is "scheduled" to be euthanized this week.
06/09/14: Cause of Death Ruled
The fatal attack occurred in the unincorporated community of Davisburg. Oakland County sheriff's deputies responded to a home in the 8000 block of Tindall Road, where they found the boy's father preparing to take his 10-week old son to the hospital. Deputies immediately began giving the baby CPR. The Springfield Township Fire Department transported the child to Genesys Regional Medical Center. He was then airlifted to Royal Oak Beaumont, where he died.
The Oakland County Medical Examiner’s office ruled the cause of death as multiple head trauma and the manner as accidental. According to Oakland County Animal Control Administrative Supervisor Sgt. Joanie Toole, the 3-and-a-half-year old dog, named "Precious," is currently in quarantine. Despite earlier reports, Toole said the owners have not yet released custody of the "Catahoula cattle hound" to animal control. If custody is surrendered, the dog will be put down.
The Clawson Patch states that the dog belonged to the child's 18-year old uncle, who had been holding the child on the couch. The uncle had been "staying with the family temporarily," according to deputies. Also sitting on the couch when the dog attacked was the boy's mother. Both she and her brother tried to fight off the dog and screamed for the child's father to help. The father received multiple injuries requiring stitches after "prying open" the dog's jaws to release the baby's head.
The brother told deputies he was holding the baby when the dog jumped on the couch and the brother pushed it away. The mother sat down next to the brother and the dog then jumped on the couch and began biting the infant’s head and throat area. The mother and brother began fighting with the dog and screaming for the father. The father responded and put his hands inside the dog’s mouth to pry the dog’s jaws open. - Mike Martindale, The Detroit News
06/09/14: Family Dog Kills Infant
Springfield Township, MI - In developing story, a two-and-a-half month old boy was viciously attacked and killed by his family's "Catahoula cattle hound" on Sunday. At the time of the attack, the baby's 18-year old uncle was holding him on the couch. The dog tried to jump on the couch, but was pushed away. The dog jumped up again, this time attacking the baby's head and throat. His 26-year old father "pried the dog's jaws open" to free his son and also sustained injuries.
What's a Catahoula cattle hound readers might ask? This depends. There is the Catahoula bulldog, Catahoula bullterrier, Catahoula pit bull and the Catahoula leopard dog (cattle dog). Take your pick; only the last qualifies for the AKC's Foundation Stock Service (FSS), which are ineligible for AKC registration. Are pit bull-mix dogs mislabeled as Catahoulas?" Yes, primarily those with merle coloring. Authentic Catahoulas (AKC example), obviously cannot be mistaken as pit bulls.
04/26/11: Blogger Dissects Deceptive Online Pit Bull Identification Test, 'Find the Pit Bull'
11/28/10: Pit Bull Dog Aggression: East Texas Man Dies Fighting Off Pit Bulls
Photo: Coats Funeral Home
Another tragedy. That poor baby, and the dad must feel horrible.
Any photos of this dog?
From the dogs I have seen online, a lot of these are pitbulls and pitmixes. Pitbull owners are known to misrepresent the breed to dupe landlords and insurance companies. Just one of many dogs represented as a Catahoula hound https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203363957447544&set=a.1593408923010.2087095.1469544339&type=3&theater
From Catahoula Leopards page Sure look like pitbulls
Its some worthless shitbull variant. Bottom line – Another worthless craphound takes a human life.
The attack style doesn't sound like a Catahoula. They are the snap, bite, release type. I would bet this dog had pit blood, just because the pattern of attack is so similar to maulers: dog staying with the kid temporarily, unprovoked attack, jaws locked to the point they needed to be pried open.
Pit breeders do outcross to catahoulas, and catahoula breeders have done the same. It sucks because pure Catahoulas are a beautiful, functional dog, not vicious, and are the only breed native to North America. It is a shame.
I cannot imagine what that father went through.
It should be notes that the merle issue runs pretty deep too. The APBT breeders look down on it like a disease:
The recent appearance of merle patterned APBTs and a couple breeders specializing in the "new" and "rare" color pattern has stirred up a controversy in the APBT community. The general thought among those that have been around the breed for the greatest number of years is that, these new color patterns were brought about by unscrupulous outcrossing to a separate breed such as Catahoula Leopard dogs. Several breeds are known to carry merle as a color pattern but the APBT is not one known to have ever carried this "infected" allele. What is known is that Catahoula Leopard dogs along with pit bulls are often used in the sport of hog catching and it is known that crosses of these breeds have been made in attempts to produce more competitive catch dogs.
"MERLE PIT BULLS"
The ONLY color which is a disqualifying fault for the American pit bull is merle. Merle is a solid base coat color splotched with red or brindle or blue spots or patches.
Merle is rightfully a disqualification from all legitimate registries for the simple reason merle is not a color associated with purebred mastiffs or bulldog types. The only "mastiff type" dog which comes merle (though not as an approved color) is the great Dane, which was developed by the crossbreeding of several mastiff, bulldog and hound breeds.
Only recently have merle "pit bulls" appeared, and in almost all cases the color can be traced back to crossbreeding with catahoula leopard dogs. This cross is particularly common in the South.
There are no purebred American pit bulls which are merle.
This is funny — a Cat bull breeder is trying to redeem the mixed-breed on a pit bull forum and points to the merlebulldogregistry.com (LOLs). The game-doggers hate this crap (the Cat bull is considered a pariah to them!) Also funny that Ambulls were only "first" recognized in 1999 by the UKC, never by the AKC, but the "Cat bull" cross has been recognized, allegedly, by some southern unrecognized kennel clubs for over 100 years! See how that does not work? 1999 is not 100 years ago! Here is the game-doggers response: So only a cur is acceptable as is cat bull… The only American bulldog strain not a mutt is original Scott line as they were simply the freaky big dogs straight from Colby.
The only Catahoulas I've ever seen were crossed with Australian Shepherds and used as cattle dogs. Yes, there are still real cowboys out there. You can hire them to round up your cows for you. They'll come with their horse and dog in a stock trailer. These are working dogs in the strictest sense. They are not pets and pay no attention to people other than their owner. They are completely focused on the cows and the rider. I don't know if they make good pets. And obviously, mixing anything with pit turns it into a time bomb.
The attack pattern also says Pitt to me too. Houlas don't clamp down like that. It's literally not what they are bred to do as an attack style.
They are bred to take down wild boars. Clamping down like that will get them killed.
My Catahoula has such a precise bite that he has grabbed birds out of of the air only to release them wet and alive when told to leave it. And we don't hunt. He has NO training on how to do it.
They are an old and pure breed so their breed traits are carefully bred for.
And they are assertive not aggressive usually. I can understand a Houla being unhappy with being removed from a couch but if he was wanted to bite I just don't see him missing his target by that much.
Even aggressive Houlas don't zone out in attacks. It's pretty precise. Anyone who had a Catahoula is well aware of the tendencies of this breed and we are never suprised by our dogs not liking someone but this just doesn't sound like their style.
You are exactly right. I know this family personally and this dog is mixed with pit.
@ Danny Spade pictures of the dog can help identify pitbull characteristics of a pitbull mix. If you know them, please get them to release pictures.
OF COURSE its mixed with pit. I just wish there was proof.
Poor little fella. Look at those sweet cheeks and bright, happy eyes. RIP, little one.
Out of respect to the family, I do not wish to cause added stress by posting pictures.
For clarity purposes and fairness to the Catahoula, I do feel it is important that the breed of this dog is reported correctly.
This litter has strong pit characteristics and I am shocked that no one that is involved with the case has spoken up, i.e. Sheriff, Animal Control, etc. because I know that just by looking at the dog they would be able to recognize the pit traits/characteristics.
It is baffling.
Also, the article states that the dog belongs to the Uncle, this is incorrect. The dog has lived with the baby's parents for at least 2 years.
Rest in Peace, Holden. And may the family find strength and comfort during this traumatic time.
@ Danny Spade. I didn't mean to sound disrespectful to the family. I apologize. I'm sure that the pain they are going through right now is their main concern.
Catahoulas are a breed thats been around long before pitt bulls. They are smarter quicker than a pitt. They are Hard_Herders and also hunters. They are high energy. They make good yard dogs on a ranch. They can be dangerous. I got one as a puppy, it was uncontrollable and destructive. It dismanteled my home from the ground up. If i walked through the yard it play attacked, wouldnt mind, so I gave her away to someone who could handle her.I am pretty sure she would have really attacked eventually. Ive owned a Chow till he passed away at 17 . Ive owned Sheppards and one doberman. I put a Catahoula in the same catagory as a pittbull. They are bred to attack and kill. I would not ever recomend one.