Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Dog Kills Owner

Pit bull kills owner
Wed, May 31, 2006
The cross-breed dog attacked as the 77-year-old victim's wife looked on in horror.

I will post the picture as soon as Blogger allows me to.
Buster killed his owner in the front yard of his home Monday in an attack that overwhelmed the victim before he could react. (Sue Reeve, LFP)

WELBURN -- An elderly man died after his pit bull crossbreed dog attacked him and tore open his throat in front of his horrified wife and a taxi driver.

John Martin, 77, from this small community just south of St. Marys, didn't even see the Monday attack coming, Lynn-del Alderson, the cabbie who saw it with Martin's wife, Nancy, said yesterday.

"The dog started charging and pounced on him from behind," said a shaken Alderson, who was delivering groceries to the couple just before 5 p.m.

"He didn't have a chance."

Minutes earlier, the couple -- married for 25 years -- had been laughing and joking with each other on the lawn of their tiny farmhouse, she said.

The couple's five-year-old dog, Buster, a 90-pound cross between a pit bull and Labrador, was playing off leash nearby, she said.

Alderson, who regularly ran deliveries to the couple, stayed in her taxi, having been warned before by the owners not to leave the car because the dog had been aggressive in the past.

What happened next was a "surreal" twist of events that started when Martin playfully poked his 57-year-old wife and then turned to walk away, the cabbie said.

Through her driver's side window, Alderson watched in horror as the hulking dog lunged at the man from behind and knocked him over.

"They were just being goofy with each other, but as soon as John walked away, Buster ran at him," she said. "It was like he was protecting (Nancy.)"

Martin, whom Alderson called slight and gentle, struggled to get the dog off him.
"John ended up on his back and the dog lunged right for his throat."

Seeing Nancy frozen in shock, Alderson jumped out of her cab to see if she could find anything to use to beat the dog away from Martin.

"I was just screaming for her to get the dog off him and I couldn't find anything to use to get Buster off," she said, adding she then called 911.

When Nancy -- apparently the dog's favoured owner -- sprang into action, it took precious seconds for her to coax the dog off her husband, Alderson said.

Nancy leashed the dog, put it inside and the two went to work on Martin, bleeding profusely from the neck.

"We were putting towels on his neck, but there was just so much blood," Alderson said.

Paramedics arrived and Martin was taken to St. Marys hospital, where he died from multiple bites to the neck.

Ontario imposed a sweeping ban on pit bulls last year, after a rash of attacks on humans by the squat, muscular dogs.

Buster, a brown and white dog given to the couple as a puppy, was picked up by officials from Hillside Kennels Animal Control Ltd., contracted by Thames Centre.

Wayne Uncer, spokes-person for the Innerkip kennel, said a veterinarian confirmed the dog was a mix between a Labrador and a pit bull.

"This dog certainly has a large amount of pit bull in him," he said.

"Had it been a border collie or a German shepherd or a Lab, it might have bitten the person and let go," he said. "But a pit bull, once they get it in their mind to kill someone, that's what they'll do."

When officials arrived at the Martin home to remove the dog (law requires any animal that has bitten or scratched anyone be quarantined for 10 days), Buster was acting aggressively, Uncer said.

The dog, a neutered male that wasn't registered as a pit bull and hadn't seen a vet in five years, had to be put in a snare pull to be forced into a cage, he said.

Once at the kennel, however, the dog appeared to be a "placid family pet," he said.

While Uncer has seen a lot of dog attacks in his years as a kennel operator, he said he's never heard of a dog killing its owner.

"It's a really sad, unusual story," he said. "It . . . just turned nasty."

At Nancy's request, he said, Buster will be put down, likely after the 10-day quarantine.
Uncer hopes others will learn from the fatal attack.

"It may influence some of the owners to use excessive caution with these dogs," he said.

The first part of Ontario's phased-in ban on pit bulls took effect last August, requiring all pit bulls be leashed, muzzled and sterilized.

On a personal note...... Yesterday it was a mixed breed. Today (front page) it reads Pit Bull Kills Owner.
Who decides what breed of dog this is?? It doesn't look like a purebred anything to me. So, it's a mutt or a mixed breed dog....Plain and Simple. That is why my title reads: Dog Kills Owner. This is such a sad story and my heart goes out to the family, but socialize your dog.

This was what the paper said yesterday.....
Dog kills owner
Tue, May 30, 2006
Man was playfully poking wife when pet turned on him

THORNDALE — A woman watched, horrified, Monday as the family dog attacked and killed her husband.

John Martin, 77, of Wellburn Road in Thames Centre was playfully poking his wife outside their home about 5 p.m. when the couple's five-year-old-dog lunged at his throat, police said.

The wife, who had been standing in the driveway with a female cab driver, was eventually able to pull the dog off her husband.

Martin was pronounced dead at hospital in St. Marys.

The 40-kilogram mixed-breed dog has been quarantined by the Middlesex-London Health Unit at a local kennel.

Provincial police continue to investigate the incident, which occurred about 20 kilometres northeast of London.


Blogger Carina said...

You got it! A dog could be 25% pitbull, or 25% Rottweiler - and when the story involves a bite or attack, it's a (choose your bad breed) mix. Rather than saying Lab mix, or whatever...
Did you read about the Golden Retriever that "acidentally" strangled the family toddler by pulling on her scarf? Terrible thing. But, in all the reports, the dog was called "family pet", "playful pooch" (I'm not making that one up) who accidentally killed the poor wee girl in play.
You KNOW it would have been reported very, very differently had it been a (insert bad breed here.)
(I have Rottweilers. There's a photo of my headless one on my blog, really.)

9:29 PM  
Blogger Conners said...

I agree with carina with what she says. I also think there's a lot to this story that no one knows about and reading between the lines leads to a lot of questions!

3:55 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home