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Small dog attacked by pit bull on Saturday has died
BY PAMELA GOULD / THE FREE LANCE–STAR
A small dog attacked by a pit bull in the Leavells Crossing neighborhood on Saturday has died, making it the second dog in less than two months killed in a dog attack in Spotsylvania County.
Amy Clark said her 17-year-old daughter was walking their 13-year-old shih tzu through the neighborhood shortly before 4 p.m. on Saturday when a pit bull ran from the front porch of its home in the 5500 block of Leavells Crossing Drive and attacked the dog.
Clark said her dog, which weighed 10 pounds and was named Maggie, died shortly after being taken to an emergency veterinary clinic.
The pit bull was surrendered to Spotsylvania animal control deputies and has been euthanized, said Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Capt. William Tydings, who oversees the animal control division.
He said deputies were still investigating the incident on Monday.
The latest attack occurred one day after a Spotsylvania General District Court judge declared another pit bull a dangerous dog. That dog had killed a 10-pound Maltese on Jan. 12 as its owner walked it through the Lancaster Gate neighborhood.
That pit bull’s owner was fined $50 on a misdemeanor charge of failing to keep the dog on her property, but was allowed to reclaim it and take it home.
Tydings said his staff investigates several dog attacks on other animals in a year but he couldn’t recall any attacks on people since the death of 82-year-old Dorothy Sullivan in 2005.
“For some reason, right now we’re getting more dangerous dog cases than usual,” he said. He said it was a coincidence that the two cases came so close together.
He also said that attacks by pit bulls are no more common than from any other breed and at one point a dachshund in Spotsylvania was on the Virginia Dangerous Dog Registry.
A pit bull is not a registered breed but a generic term used to describe dogs with similar physical characteristics, including a solid build, medium size and short hair. A pit bull is considered one of several breeds, including the Staffordshire bull terrier, American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier and the bull terrier, or a mix of terrier breeds.
Pamela Gould: 540/735-1972
Previously, I’ve spoken to experts who provided safety tips for taking walks in the neighborhood.
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