Sometimes Man’s Best Friend…. isn’t

Jeremy Thurman on April 28, 2014

If you’re a dog lover, there’s no question but that your beloved pup is part of the family. However, part of being a good dog owner is knowing if your dog would be capable of attacking a person — or another dog — and ensuring that its training, proper supervision and confinement will ensure that it doesn’t happen.

A 74-year-old Enid woman was brutally attacked last week by two dogs in her neighborhood. Allegedly, the woman was walking home when a neighbor let the dogs out, even though a part of his back fence had been down. The dogs ran at the woman and attacked her, causing injuries to her arm, leg, forehead and a fractured pelvis and bruised tailbone. Following the attack, the dogs were surrendered to animal control and then destroyed.

Elsewhere, a 7-year-old girl in Tampa, Florida was bitten in the face this week by a dog, which led to her needing her right side of her face and nose to be reconstructed so that she could breathe. The procedure required seven hours in the operating room and seven surgeons.

These stories are sadly not uncommon — another news report surfaced yesterday of a Kentucky woman who was attacked in her own yard by a pack of four unrestrained dogs. The woman suffered multiple bites, including detachment of part of her scalp. She remains hospitalized, and her loved ones continue to hope for recovery.

If you’re a dog owner, it’s important to be aware that some breeds have been shown to be more dangerous than others. In two of the cases mentioned above, the attacking dogs were pit bulls or pit-bull mixed breeds. The dog that attacked the little girl was a black labrador, which is not considered to be at the top of the list of dangerous dogs. However, this is not to say that you shouldn’t keep and love a pit bull, rottweiler or other dog that’s statistically more likely to attack. What it does mean is that you need to be a responsible dog owner by making sure that your pet is properly trained and confined.

dog attack infographic

In fact, the ASPCA has said that although pit bulls have historically been bred to fight other dogs, they can be great human companions. However, the ASPCA says that:

“Pit bulls aren’t all bad. They’re not ferocious beasts to be feared and reviled. Pit bulls aren’t all good either. They have teeth and the potential to use them, just like any other dog. Their powerful bodies and persistent nature make them formidable animals. As such, they should be treated with care and respect. They require a great deal of exercise, proper training and responsible management. But if you’re willing to devote the time and effort necessary, befriending a pit bull can be immensely rewarding. Along with their strength and spirit comes an inspiring zest for life and an ardent affinity for people. As any committed pit bull parent will tell you, beneath the brawn, most are faithful, fun-loving, affectionate companions. So before you make up your mind about them, get to know a few pit bulls. You may be surprised.”

If you or someone you know has suffered at the hands of an irresponsible pet owner, please contact our Oklahoma dog bite lawyers.

Jeremy Thurman

Jeremy Thurman is an attorney at McIntyre Law who focuses primarily on semi-truck accident and catastrophic injury cases. He is known as a meticulous attorney whose work ethic and small town values translate into excellent results for his clients. Read more about Jeremy Thurman.

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