Owners of a pit bull that mauled a 3-year-old boy in a Minnesota suburb claim they are being “bullied” into giving up the dog. The toddler was attacked during a party last summer and required 22 stitches to his face. Neighbors of the pit bull owners want the dog gone from the neighborhood due to the amount of children on the block. The owners claim that since the dog never hurt anyone else, they should not have to get rid of their pet.
The Minnesota pit bull owners have installed a fence and a “Beware of dog” sign on their property since their dog mauled the 3-year-old boy. The toddler boy was left with lifelong scars due to the pit bull attack, his family maintains. According to the website Dogbites, which tracks dog attacks, 25 fatal pit bull dog attacks occurred in America in 2014.
The fatal dog attacks by pit bulls or pit bull mixes accounted for the vast majority of the noted human deaths via dog attacks on the website. Most of the fatal pit bull attacks cited for last year happened to young children.
Johnathan Quarles, Jr., 7-months-old, was mauled to death by a grandparent’s pit bull. Logan Sheppard, 4-years-old, was killed by his uncle’s two pit bulls. Kasii Haith, 4-years-old, was mauled to death by three pit bulls while visiting a friend with his mother. John Harvard, 5-years-old, was attacked and killed by his neighbor’s pit bull while playing in his own backyard. Christopher Malone, 3-years-old, was mauled to death by two pit bulls owned by family members. Mia DeRouen, 4-years-old, was horrifically killed by her family’s pit bull while Mia and her mother were watching television. Braelynn Coulter, 3-years-old, was killed by one of her family’s two pit bulls. Je’vaeh Mayes, 2-years-old, was severely mauled by a chained pit bull that her family was watching for a friend. Kara Hartrich, 4-years-old, was attacked and killed by at least two of her family’s three pit bulls on her fourth birthday.
From 2005 to 2013, pit bulls reportedly killed 176 Americans and accounted for 62 percent of the total recorded fatal dog attacks death – 282 in total. Combined, pit bulls and rottweilers accounted for 74 percent of these deaths, according to DogBites.
Chris Loney, the father of the pit bull attack victim, said the incident occurred during an August 2013 block part at Prior Lake. The attack was reported to the local police, but no charges have yet to be filed against the pit bull owners.
“My son is by my side the whole time, within bout a foot and I turn about 45 degrees to throw some paper plates in the trash, and I heard this ‘ruff, ruff.’ The dog came out of nowhere,” the pit bull attack victim’s father said.
The family of the 3-year-old boy attacked by the pit bull said they received a $1,000 insurance claim from the neighbors who owned the dog to help with medical costs, but now plan to file a lawsuit.
Chandra Loney, the mother of the victim mauled by a pit bull, said, “We gave our neighbors the option to pay the medical bills and get rid of the dog and we’ll leave it alone and they chose to keep the dog.”
Protecting Paws Animals Rescue founder Keri Marsh said she thinks pit bulls don’t deserve all the bad press they get.
“I believe it’s a lot of social media that gets them the bad wrap. It’s in the training. If you train them to be a protector, they are going to protect you.”
Minneapolis just recently started adopting out pit bulls and rottweilers from city shelters. To date, 117 pit bulls and rottweilers have reportedly found new homes.
[Image via: Patriot News Wire]