A PIT BULL snapped its chain and then snapped completely, attacking two people Friday morning on North Central near the Vance School parking lot.
The victims, a young girl and Zach Adams, were treated for puncture wounds and various abrasions at Paris Community Hospital.
Katy D. Craig, the dog’s owner, was issued a city ordinance for having a dangerous dog at large. The dog was up to date on its rabies shots, but removed from the city by its owners.
Andrea Gross, director of the Edgar County Animal Shelter, said she would “constantly follow up” on the dog’s status to ascertain if euthanasia was in order.
“I saw a girl going across the street and I saw a dog run across the street,” recalled Adams. “I got up there and that dog had her pinned to the ground. I stepped on his chain and shortened up its length and told her she had to get out of there, because she got tore up by that dog.”
As the girl fled, Adams continued, “He turned his attentions toward me and started snapping and growling. He got me a couple of times and I backed away from him and we both went our own ways. He went back to where he belonged and I went to the hospital.” At the hospital, Adams discovered the other victim whom he had rescued was one of his cousins.
“I do commend the man for getting out and helping this girl in need,” Police Chief Mike Henness said. “Unfortunately, we get this (kind of) call more often than we should. …DOG OWNERS, FOR THE MOST PART, BELIEVE THEIR DOGS AREN'T VICIOUS."
Gross at the Animal Shelter offered advice for folks who find themselves confronted by a strange and aggressive animal.
“It’s important not to panic or show fear,” said Gross. “Try to be emotionless. Don’t run. Try to distract the dog with an object.
“Most of the time, the first thing you think is, ‘I’ll fight back,’ but that will just make the dog bite you more,” she added. “The most important thing is to get to a location to protect yourself. If you kick at the dog, you’re showing aggression, so it will want to bite back.”
As for dog owners, Chief Henness said dogs should be kept on their owner’s property, in the backyard if possible, either fenced in or on a chain. Allowing an aggressive dog access to the front yard could lead to it feeling antagonized by pedestrians, creating, Henness said, “a dangerous situation for everybody out walking.”
Henness added, " People should give us a call, and do give us a call, when they see a dog on a chain in the front yard where the chain can reach the sidewalk."
Protecting passers-by from temperamental pets isn’t just being a responsible citizen; it’s also financially prudent.
“Owners need to know they are liable for any injuries sustained from their dog attacking a pedestrian,” Henness noted