Dangerous Dog Debate

This week members of the St. Joseph County Council will continue working on an animal control ordinance that deems certain dogs as dangerous.

In the last week, there have been two dog attacks in South Bend.

But under the new ordinance--dogs that attack would be put away quicker than before!

When the ordinance was first proposed pit bulls were specifically named as dangerous.

Recently that was changed.

County council members say that's because other dog breeds can attack just as easily.

So the proposed ordinance defines what makes a dog dangerous and creates steeper penalties for their owners.

6 months ago a pit bull attacked Pam Brunette’s dog on a routine walk. She says the 120-pound Alaskan Malamute, Snoopy, now gets chiropractic and acupuncture work done on his back.

“He was on a leash and all of the sudden this dog came out of nowhere. I didn't even see it and didn't even know it was coming until after it hit Snoopy which knocked him back onto me and almost knocked me back off onto my feet,” says Burnette.

Almost the same thing happened last weekend when Robin Timleck was walking her jack russell terrier. This attack was by an Akita and Robin was bitten badly on her leg. She dog was attacked in the front and back.

“Just all of the sudden the dog was on him… had him here first… came up from behind... was just shaking him shaking him,” says Timleck.

Both women now paying hundreds in vet bills say this isn't the first time these two have dogs attacked.

The current animal ordinance the dog couldn't be put away but that could change with the new proposed animal control ordinance.

“Why give them a second chance next time they might kill a child?” asks Burnette.

“If a dog attacks somebody the likelihood of them doing it again is greater,” agrees Timleck.

Making the old adage "once bitten… twice shy" true for these two dog lovers.

“Its not just pit bulls there are attacking there a lot of dogs that are dangerous it just depends on how they are raised,” says Timleck.

“And its not the animals fault, its the owners fault,” agrees Burnette.

A committee from the St. Joseph County Council will work on the animal ordinance at a meeting on Tuesday evening.

It could then go before the full county council in January.

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