A large number of recent pit bull attacks have occurred within the last few months that have resulted in many tragic fatalities nationwide. Pit bulls are, deservedly or not, infamous for their alleged inherent dangerousness. Wide-spread public consensus generally holds that pit bulls are perhaps one of the most, if not the most, dangerous breeds of dogs. Many pit bull owners vigorously dispute this characterization by arguing that their pit bull has never been aggressive nor caused injury. However, some evidence does suggest that a correlation exists between the pit bull breed and dangerousness. A multi-year review of a major hospital in Philadelphia that specializes in plastic and reconstructive surgery found that slightly over half of all patients admitted as the result of a dog attack had been attacked by a pit bull. An additional study featured in the Annals of Surgery also indicated that mauling by a pit bull is by far the most frequent reason why a patient requires surgery as the result of a dog attack. Regardless of which side of the debate is correct, it is beyond dispute that pit bull attacks have shown themselves eminently capable of killing and maiming human beings in the most gruesome manner.
For example, last week in Virginia, two pit bulls mauled their owner and killed her with repeated bites to her throat and face. The gruesome attack occurred while the young woman was walking the two dogs near her home in Virginia. The initial investigation revealed that the owner was most probably dragged to the ground by her pit bulls, at which point, the pit bulls inflicted traumatic injuries to her neck and face. At the moment, investigators appear to be the most troubled as to why two fully grown pit bulls would savagely attack their owner. Generally, dogs don’t bite their owners or those persons with whom they are fairly familiar. Most dog attacks involve unsupervised aggressive dogs attacking and biting strangers. In this case, the young woman had owned the dogs for a fair amount of time. Additionally, friends of the victim, who were familiar with the dogs, have expressed disbelief that the animals would harm their owner.
Another gruesome attack also occurred this week in Michigan, which involved three pit bulls attacking and killing two mini ponies and mauling a full-sized adult horse so badly that it had to be euthanized. Two of the pit bulls in question are still on the loose. The owner of the horse was able to shoot one of the dogs when he discovered the dog eating the carcass of the mangled horse.
Last week in Illinois, an elderly woman was killed by a six-year-old pit bull she kept as a pet. Inexplicably, the dog attacked the seventy-seven-year-old woman right outside her home. A neighbor saw the attack and quickly called 911. Tragically, the responding officers were unable to resuscitate the senior citizen. Responding officers characterized the elderly woman’s injuries as catastrophic and unbelievably gruesome. Similar to the dog attack in Virginia, this incident involved an apparently well-cared-for pit bull attacking and killing its owner.
Last month in Florida, a pit bull owner was forced to defend herself and her child when a pit bull kept as a family pet randomly attacked the woman’s fourteen-year-old-daughter inside their home. The attack was such that the woman had to retrieve a butcher knife and stab the pit bull repeatedly to get it to stop biting the young girl. The woman was shocked that the dog would attack members of the household in which it lived. After the attack, she even went so far as to characterize the animal as “the sweetest dog ever.”
And finally, this summer in Las Vegas, a nine-year-old boy was savagely attacked and killed by a pit bull. The pit bull seized the child on the neck, and with incredible force, the dog bit down and severed a major artery. In spite of the fact that the child was quickly transported to the hospital, the trauma surgeons at Sunrise Medical Center were unable to save the boy. The three-year-old pit bull was later euthanized.
Careless and neglectful pit bull owners are a big part of this ongoing problem. While many pit bull owners take reasonable steps to ensure that their dogs do not injure others, some owners routinely endanger people in their community by failing to secure their dogs. Time and again, incidents are reported where a neglectful pit bull owner in Las Vegas allows his animal to run free in his neighborhood until the pit bull attacks someone, and Clark County Animal Control is notified. At Oronoz & Ericsson, we frequently see persons who have been mauled by a pit bull who lives in their neighborhood. Even minor incidents often involve painful stitches, shots, and scar revision surgery. Of course, so much of this would be completely unnecessary if pit bull owners took care not to allow their animals to run freely. Unfortunately, human nature being what it is, preventable pit bull attacks will continue to occur because some owners will always choose to be careless in securing their animals. In the event you or a loved one is a victim of these pit bull attacks in Las Vegas, call us. We will sit down with you, discuss the facts, and if something can be done, we will definitely help you.