Dog attack victims describe close calls with major injuries

Two men say they were attacked by an unleashed dog that came at one of them "like a missile" on Saturday evening.

Victims of Saturday attack spent 10 and 11 hours in hospital

Dog attack in Ottawa leaves man shaken and angry

2 months ago
Duration 0:58
Robert Page says he was attacked by a dog on Cyr Avenue in Vanier on Saturday, an encounter that left him bleeding from injuries to his forearms and ankle.

Robert Page felt like he was fighting for his life after an unleashed dog attacked him while he was walking to his car near Jeanne-Mance Street and Cyr Avenue in Vanier on Saturday.

"The dog comes out like a missile," Page said. "Then he started going for my throat … jumping in the air." 

Page said the frightening moment lasted five minutes and landed him in hospital for more than 11 hours. He sustained injuries to his forearms and ankle, but is thankful his injuries weren't worse. 

"My fists were closed. If my fist was not closed I would probably be missing some fingers," he told CBC. 

Robert Page says he was 'fighting for his life' during a dog attack. (Rachelle Elsiufi/CBC)

In an emailed statement, Ottawa police said they received the call about "a dangerous dog" that attacked a man around 10 p.m. When officers arrived, they were able to locate the person in charge of the dog. 

"The guardian informed us that the dog had now returned home and the officers followed the guardian to her residence," the statement said. 

"When she opened the door, the dog ran past her and escaped into the street where he attacked and bit another man." 

Page says he thinks he may have lost fingers in the attack if his fist hadn't been closed. (Bruce McConville)

'It could have been fatal' 

Bruce McConville, the second man attacked, spent 10 hours in hospital and has bite marks on his right inner arm, left abdomen and injuries to his knees. 

"The doctor at the Montfort Hospital says it's a fraction away from a major artery," he said. "It could have been a fatal injury." 

McConville sustained injuries to his right forearm. (Bruce McConville)

Both men said not enough is being done to ensure this type of attack doesn't happen again. 

"It leaves the public, seniors and children vulnerable to repeated dog attacks," McConville said. 

Robert Page, left, and Bruce McConville were injured Saturday night in two separate attacks by the same dog. (Bruce McConville)

Muzzle order, $1,600 in fines 

After the second attack, police said officers found the dog and used a stun gun. 

"The deployment was successful and the dog ran back into the residence where he was secured," said the police statement. 

Tania McCumber, acting director of bylaw and regulatory services (BLRS), said in a written statement that the department issued a muzzle order for the animal.

Five charges have also been issued under the animal care and control bylaw:

  • Two counts of failing to ensure a dog does not bite or attack a person without provocation ($615 per offence).
  • Two counts of failing to keep dog on leash and under control ($125 per offence).
  • One count of failing to register a dog in the City of Ottawa ($125 per offence).

"BLRS reserves the right to charge under the Dog Owners' Liability Act (DOLA)," McCumber said in the statement.

"If the owner of a vicious dog is found to have contravened a provision of DOLA, or their dog has bitten, attacked or posed a menace to public safety, a mandatory destruction order may be issued by the court."

Police and bylaw would not confirm the breed of the dog. Both victims believe it was a restricted breed in Ontario. 


Rachelle Elsiufi is a journalist with CBC Ottawa. She previously worked as a reporter with Citynews in Edmonton. You can reach her at