WARNING: Story contains a Facebook post with a graphic image of injuries to a dog.

A dog owner in Regina says his pet has been mauled twice in three weeks by what he calls a "dangerous and aggressive" pitbull and says he wants action taken against the alleged four-legged offender.

Darcy Ready says he was walking his corgi-German shepherd mix, Callie, near the corner of Lake Street and Cowan Crescent Tuesday when a pitbull terrier ran toward and attacked Callie.

Callie dog attack before photo

Callie's owners say she was attacked twice by the same dog. Bill Thorn of the Regina Humane Society says investigating dog attacks can be a lengthy process. (Submitted by Mackenzie Taylor)

Ready says he himself was bit in both hands and required stitches.

"I'm afraid that we will have to recommend that this dog be euthanized," Ready said of the pitbull. "If it's not, I would be really worried that this dog will reoffend."

'Traumatic' thing to watch

Tuesday wasn't the first time his family has encountered the pitbull in question, Ready said.

He says his stepdaughter, Alex Taylor, was walking Callie on Aug. 25 when the same pitbull seized Callie and didn't let go for 15 minutes.

The pitbull finally gave up when its owner poured water on it, said Ready.

"Although the dog didn't attack her, seeing the dog try to kill her dog was so traumatic," said Ready. "I just can't say how much trauma it's been for us here."

Warning others

Ready's other stepdaughter, Mackenzie Taylor, took to Facebook to warn others after the most recent attack on Callie, which left her with serious bite wounds on her back and the family with veterinary bills now totaling $1,500.

Mackenzie Taylor took to Facebook to warn others after her dog was attacked.

Ready says he reported both attacks to the police and is working with Animal Protection Services.

A lengthy process

The process taken by Animal Protection Services to investigate dog attacks can be a lengthy one, according to the Regina Humane Society.

​"If there is a complaint of an animal, that it is dangerous, it does need to be proven, just like any kind of accusation," said Bill Thorn, a spokesperson for the Regina Humane Society. 

​"There's a lot of people that don't understand why we just can't come and get the dog."

Ready, however, is expecting a quick resolution.

"They are doing their best, I know, to expedite that process and we're hopeful by next week... the dog will be declared dangerous and won't be at risk of harming anyone in the neighbourhood," he said.

'It can be a lengthy process. It can be months, depending on how busy the courts are. Maybe even longer.' - Bill Thorn, Regina Humane Society 

Reported attacks are handled under a Regina bylaw that addresses dangerous animals in the city.

"In some cases it may seem really obvious what happened but like any investigation for any alleged crime or incident it needs to be investigated fully," Thorn said. 

"I can't say you murdered somebody and then you go to jail right away." 

Courts can determine if dog is considered dangerous

The case will proceed to the next level if it seems charges are warranted after protection officers have gathered evidence.

"It can be a lengthy process. It can be months, depending on how busy the courts are. Maybe even longer."

Thorn says the humane society wants to see laws change to place responsibility on owners, rather than putting the blame on the dog.

"We'd like to see the laws be a little more progressive that can help deal with animals that really and truly are an issue — regardless of their breed, size or whatever — and hold owners more accountable."

Thorn said animals are currently considered property under the Animal Protection Act of Saskatchewan. 

"We can't go take your car just because you're accused of something. There has to be more to it." 

The area where the alleged dog that attacked another dog lives

Police would get involved in an animal attack investigation if there is evidence of criminal intent, but as of now that's lacking in Taylor's case, a police spokesperson said.

Thorn said current laws say if an allegedly dangerous dog is brought to the Humane Society, it can be held for three days before it has to be given back to the owner.

In some cases, if an animal has bitten a person, a 10-day quarantine can be ordered before it's released again.  

A spokesperson for Laval school said staff are aware of the situation and are working with authorities to ensure students remain safe.

Clarifications

  • A previous version of the story said Darcy Ready's stepdaughter Mackenzie Taylor was walking Callie on Aug. 25. In fact, it was his other stepdaughter, Alex Taylor.
    Sep 14, 2017 9:58 AM CT
With files from Alex Soloducha