Two dogs owned by a South Dakota State Senator and prominent physician attacked a woman in Sioux Falls on Friday morning. The woman was walking near the 1300 block of South Elmwood Avenue at around 7 a.m. when she encountered two Tibetan Mastiffs, one male, one female, said Capt. Greg VandeKamp of the Sioux Falls Police Department. The woman had bites to both legs and her right arm, and was treated at Sanford USD Medical Center. Police think the male dog bit her.
State Sen. Blake Curd and his wife Debbie own the dogs.“We are distraught over what has happened and thankful it wasn’t worse, ”Blake Curd said in a statement to the Argus Leader.
“We hope for all to recover quickly and applaud the quick actions of the Sioux Falls Police Department, EMS personnel and Milo the animal control officer who responded to render assistance in this unfortunate circumstance.
”The dogs were loose in the Riverview Heights neighborhood when police responded. One of the dogs bit an officer on the thigh, Sgt. Aaron Benson said. He shook himself loose and then fired two shots when the dog approached him again. Neither dog was hit by the gunshots.The officer was treated at Avera McKennan Hospital. It is unknown whether the dog bite broke skin, but the officer had a knife in his pocket that the dog bit down on, according to VandeKamp.
Neighbor Jon Arneson, lawyer for the Argus Leader, saw the incident unfold. The injured woman took shelter in his garage after the attack. “It occurred to a few of us that had she not managed to get into my garage, she could very easily have been killed,” Arneson said in an email to the neighborhood. “There is virtually no way she could have defended herself.”
By 7:40 a.m. both dogs were contained in an Animal Control vehicle. The dogs were current on vaccinations, Benson said.The dogs are still with Animal Control. The police chief determines if they are vicious, VandeKamp said.
It was a pretty unnerving experience for anybody who loves dogs,” Arneson said in the email. “I obviously have no idea what triggered the dogs’ reaction this morning, but I assume they hadn’t shown any vicious tendencies before this. I doubt Dr. Curd would have risked keeping them if they had.”
INTERNET PICTURE OF A TIBETAN MASTIFF
A woman and a Sioux Falls Police officer were bit after two dogs got loose on Friday morning.
At about 7 a.m. Friday, police said a woman was attacked by at least one dog near 1300 S. Elmwood Ave.
When police arrived, Captain Greg VandeKamp said an officer was also attacked in the right thigh while exiting his vehicle.
The officer managed to separate himself from the animal, but as the dog approached again, he fired two rounds. Neither the male or female dog sustained any injuries. VandeKamp said a knife may have shielded the officer's leg, and that it's unclear if the bites broke the skin.
Sioux Falls Animal Control later found and captured the two dogs. The male dog was described as a TIBETAN MASTIFF, and police think it was the primary aggressor.
The woman sustained injuries to her right arm and both legs from multiple bites. The officer received minor injuries to his thigh. Both victims were transported to a local hospital for treatment.
Police said, under city ordinance, Chief Doug Barthel will determine if the dogs are vicious and if either animal should be euthanized.
VandeKamp said it appears the dogs were secured by the owners, but both were able to get loose. Both dogs are current on vaccinations No charges have been filed.