Two pit bulls that attacked a Shih Tzu and nearly killed a cat Nov. 18 remain in quarantine while police continue the process of determining whether to declare them dangerous, Police Sgt. Michael Glassberg told Patch on Friday.
An official declaration that the dogs are dangerous would impose restrictions on the dog owner if he takes possession of them again, Glassberg said. There would be a deposit for insurance, for example. The dogs would have to be microchipped and remain on a three-foot leash when they were being walked. Fencing at the dog owner’s home, located on the 700 block of Ninth Avenue South, would have to meet certain standards.
“There’s some pretty restrictive things on it,” Glassberg said.
The dogs would not be euthanized unless the owner didn’t want them back, he said.
Under city ordinance, owners have the right to appeal a declaration that an animal is dangerous in a hearing before the police chief or his designee.
Meanwhile, police have started the process of charging the 44-year-old owner with having his dogs off leash. Glassberg signed the charging documents Thursday, but it wasn’t clear at press time whether charges had gone through yet.
It is Patch’s policy in most cases not to identify suspects until they are officially charged or arrested. Patch will update this story once charges have been filed.
The dogs initially came to officers’ attention when police received a report that a pit bull had attacked a Shih Tzu on the 700 block of Eighth Avenue South. The Shih Tzu’s owner was able to chase the pit bull away before he severely hurt the smaller dog.
But while officers were on scene, one of the dogs attacked a 10-year-old cat, Peppie, while the cat was on its own porch—secured to the front door with a harness and leash so he wouldn’t roam the neighborhood. The dog’s bite removed a piece of bone from Peppie’s leg. The surgeon was able to save the cat’s leg after a $5,000 operation.
Peppie’s owner, Gerada Louks, said the cat’s recovery is proceeding apace. In order to ensure he heals properly, Peppie is not allowed to roam the house like he wants and is unhappy at the moment. But Louks added that at least a pet that she considers part of the family is still with her.