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23 thoughts on “2024 Dog Bite Fatality: Breeder Killed, Husband Severely Injured After Attack by Catahoula Leopard Dog

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  1. Poor Leonora killed by dogs she breed for 25 years.I don’t get it if she breed them for 25 years why did they attacked her.I guess she was an older lady they probably bite in her neck and she died instantly I think if she was younger lady she probably could fight them off.

  2. As we get older, our strength tends to decline. In my case, I currently handle very few of my GSDs. Why? Playing can get out of control. A friend handles all of them. I don’t know much about this breed.

    • Totally get that. Even still young, I swapped from the Great Dane I adored, and who was gentle and amazing, to French Bulldogs. I injured my back as a dog groomer and by age 25 had significant pain I knew would get worse. The moment I knew for sure was when that poor boy, as a senior, slipped and fell in the kitchen and I could NOT get him up on my own. I knew a giant breed puppy, and eventual senior, wouldn’t be a good fit in my situation any longer, so I looked for a similar-temperament dog in a small package. I’ll always miss my big boy, but I chose 100% right. My back and neck ARE much worse now in my 40s and I haven’t been able to work in a while now, but these guys are something I can easily deal with.

    • Learning, in a word, no. Bloodhounds are not bred to tangle with wild hogs and Leopards as these dogs were. Bloodhounds are “finders” not fighters. I have only met two (that I can recall) in three decades of animal control, and/or welfare, and they were not aggressive at all. Doesn’t mean there isn’t an aggressive individual out there but that’s not the role for which they were intended.

        • That’s correct Colleen. Stories from the American slave era talk about horrible hounds that not only tracked but viciously attacked fugitives. No not the goofy looking bloodhounds of today!

          I was wondering if theses catahoula leopard dogs are the same or a related breed.

    • The catahoula cur, catahoula bulldog, catahoula pit bull dog — you see where I am headed with this — have long been cross-bred with American bulldogs, pit bulls, and other bull breeds for hunting purposes. In fact, this was so rampant, it is believed this is how merle color became so entwined with the American pit bull terrier. Merle disqualifies an APBT under ADBA and UKC standards. Because this attack did occur in Florida (home of the American bulldog), we immediately assumed the culprit was a catahoula bulldog (as seen here by another local Chiefland breeder). Not the case. The Hales were, apparently, breeding and showing actual catahoula leopard dogs. You can see how different they are than the catahoula bulldogs. Also, because the dogs are so geared toward hunting, the working lines can have tremendous diversity. (LOLs for some breed history and the different lines and sizes).

  3. It’s certainly confusing. The ever questionable Wikipedia automatically redirects “Catahoula Cur” to “Catahoula Leopard Dog.” Who knows what the dog involved in the Bay Area incident actually was!

    Thanks for the links.

  4. Prayers for Mr Hale, So heartbreaking. These dogs aren’t known to attack and kill people. Wondering if the dog had some underlying condition that caused it to attack them. I’ve heard that Hypothyroidism is a problem in theses breeds and can cause temperament changes. I hope they can get to the bottom of this Horrible Tragedy. Praying for this family 🙏

  5. Truth be told, all large dogs are capable of mauling and killing humans. It’s a simple fact of life. Pitbulls are the most rampant killers, of course, but no one should be complacent about the danger that all dogs can pose under the right circumstances.

  6. Let me just say as an experienced handler of this breed ( more than 40 years) this is absolutely not typical of the breed. They are usually very loyal to their family. Furthermore for accurate info on the breed you must go to their registry NALC. That is the official registry of the breed period.
    I’m absolutely saddened by this story and all thoughts and prayers go to the family.

    • Heya Happy,

      Yeah, had a buddy and she trained/handled protection dogs for a couple decades.

      When she stopped doing that, she bought a Catahoula. As an experienced dog handler and hunter, she believed it was a great dog, protective but not aggressive towards other dogs or people. As any good dog handler, she researched deeply before making a choice. She had zero intent of using it for protection work but did train it for hunting.

      Last I heard, she was enjoying this dog immensely. Up to that point–I’d never even heard of them. As someone who spent a lot of time discussing dog aggression (and retraining some decades ago)–I’m pretty aware of all the usual culprits.

      So, this dog could be a mix. Could have been mentally unstable or even, a common problem in hunting dogs–have had serious heat stroke at some point causing aggression.

  7. Some years ago I had a breeder-friend who bred GSDs and GSD mixes. With advancing age and medical problems (type 2 diabetes with neuropathy and severe arthritis in one knee), taking care of his dogs became impossible for him. A neighbor was feeding them. The owner walked through his kennel with a BB gun. I know he used it to scare
    dogs. I don’t know if any were actually hit.

    I think John used his BB gun because he was afraid his dogs would attack him as a pack. He often had six or more dogs loose in his yard. Many of his dogs were feral. They had never been handled.

    No person was mauled or killed. John loved his dogs, but his health gave out. At the end, he signed over his dogs to rescue. He was gone within a week.

    I enjoyed this man but not everything he did. The reason I listed breeding GSD mixes was because I believe he did.
    He also had some fantastic quality GSDs.

    Breeders with medical problems need to have a way to stop breeding dogs with the safety of people and dogs. Some breeders of large breed dogs have downsized to small breeds. I no longer handle many of my GSDs. The exceptions are my ninety pound service dog and his obnoxious son who lacks training.

  8. “Not Everyone Needs a Catahoula” is the official registry motto. National Association of Louisiana Catahoulas, Inc. Only dogs registered with the NALC are real, untainted, Catahoula Leopard Dogs. The leopard is the name for the merle color. It has nothing to do with leopard hunting.

    There is no such thing as a “show” Catahoula. They are not house pets. They are working dogs and have a reputation for turning aggressive towards strangers when they get old. If you know anything about them, you would be cautious approaching a home that has these loose outside.

    Male catahoulas are commonly aggressive towards other male dogs they don’t know. They do not have any pitbull in their breeding. I am from Louisiana not far from where they originated. The only people that have them use them for what they were intended, hunting and herding cattle. When used for pig hunting they bay the pig. They don’t catch the pig. That is where bull dogs come in. They work with the Catahoulas. No sane person would mix a pit with a Catahoula. Catahoula’s are part wolf and extremely smart. I am shocked frankly, that people are trying to keep these as house pets. All that said they are not people killers like pit bulls. I have never heard of a serious injury caused by one to a person. I would have to guess that the poor victim here got caught up in the middle of a fight between males and something freak happened.

    • No just the one male in a kennel. She was my sister. I completely agree with you for many reasons based on experience. She and I didn’t agree on dog matters. I am not a breeder but have had akc registered German shepherds for over 30 years. We had one litter 6 years ago. But breeding isn’t for me at all. With your experience please continue to educate others.

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