Dog attacked by another dog: owner’s responsibility

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Anne Babin holds her dog Léa in her arms, which was killed by another dog. Source: Canadian Radio

The deadly attack on a Bichon Frise by the Great Dane in Carleton-sur-Mer a week ago raises questions about responsibility in this case. Bichon owners and Great Dane breeders blame the big dog’s upbringing since it was adopted, which wouldn’t be appropriate. The law also provides that in such cases, owners are liable for damage caused by their animals.

Anne Babin live in Carleton-sur-Mer. For 12 years, she was Léa’s mistress, but on July 16, everything changed. At a private campground in the city, his dog, weighing only 3.5 kg, was attacked by a Great Dane, a very strong breed that weighs about 70 kg on average.

The attack was fatal to the small dog.

Anne Babin was walking to her trailer, rocking bike in hand, after the animal had left to briefly explore the land of its neighbours. “That’s when the beast stood up and jumped on me and snatched the dog from my hand. She took him in her mouth, crushed his chest, pierced his heart and threw him to the ground. The woman couldn’t restrain her animal, it was too strong and was only held by the collar,” said Léa’s owner emotionally.

According to Ms. Babin, only after her dog was killed did the Great Dane release it. “My dog ​​was bleeding in my arms and there was nothing we could do about it,” she said.

The Great Dane’s owner, named Tokyo, attended the scene, helpless and unable to control his animal. She was in tears, according to Mrs. Babin.

The woman then contacted Ms. Babin on social media to apologize. The Great Dane’s owner even mentioned to him that she would come the next day to take her animal to the breeder in Gaspé, where she adopted it. She will add that she knows she was wrong and that she takes full responsibility for it.

Michel Bourget is the owner of La Vallée des Géants, a Great Dane farm in Gaspé. Tokyo was born and raised in his home before his family in Carleton-sur-Mer adopted him last summer.

For Mr. Bourget, the explanation for this attack was clear. “He was not raised with enough solidity. They are not a mean breed, the Great Dane, but they do need to be well-behaved and firm,” he said.

He believes this is not the case for this family. “He was more of a toy than a dog. They love him, so they have no authority and let him do whatever he wants. He is one of the boss, he is the boss there. That was also missed,” he said.

“The problem is the owner, not the dog,” says Michel Bourget, owner of La Vallée des Géants.

Since Tokyo returned the breeder, he said the dog’s behavior was exemplary. “He is doing very well and for us he is very good, even as gentle as a lamb. I drove him around and he showed no malice. I don’t understand what happened. I don’t understand his reaction,” he said.

Mr Bourget confirmed that the Great Danes are not a breed known to be dangerous or particularly aggressive towards other animals. “I’ve never seen them. I’ve never heard of it and I’ve had great Danes all my life,” he said.

The unpredictability of the attack also shows the level of vigilance that is always required.

“You never know what can happen to a big dog, because it’s a big dog. (Owner) should have muzzled her dog. That was the mistake she made,” according to Michel Bourget, owner of La Vallée des Géants rancher.

The precedent for the Great Dane

Although Tokyo is “gentle as a lamb” now, according to the breeder, this is not the first time he has attacked another dog roughly.

After the attack, which she said on social media, Anne Babin received statements from two owners whose dogs were attacked by the same Great Dane. In their case, the attacks were not fatal. Realizing that the dog had relapsed, the three decided to file a complaint with the City of Carleton-sur-Mer.

Therefore, the animal’s level of danger will probably have to be assessed by a veterinarian. This is exactly what his breeder intends to do, who is waiting for the Town of Carleton to get back to him on the subject.

However, Mr Bourget intends to keep the dog at home, despite the results of the vet’s assessment. The breeder feels that he has some responsibility and wants to prevent such a thing from happening again in the future.

Michel Bourget was convinced that another attack would not have occurred if Tokyo had stayed with him. “I raised them well. I’m not mean, but I’m consistent, and I’m the boss,” he said.

The role of the city

“If he is declared dangerous, I will hold him accordingly. He’s going to be in a ring, and when I’m out with him, he’s going to have a muzzle and I’m not going to drop him off with little dogs, he’ll always be on a leash,” Bourget said.

On the City of Carleton-sur-Mer’s website, it is also mentioned that a dog weighing more than 20 kg must wear a harness or leash in public places and that the dog must “remain under the control of a dog at all times.” who is capable of mastering it”.

In the case of Tokyo, these guidelines were not respected.

Anne Babin understands very well that municipalities cannot monitor every animal. However, she wondered if they could do more than just post legal reminders in the newspaper. The woman wants “irresponsible owners” to be punished.

“If you can’t control your animals, you shouldn’t have them!” “, according to Anne Babin, the owner of the dog Léa, was fatally attacked.

Anne Babin points out that it’s not always easy to report dog attacks in a small town like Carleton-sur-Mer, where everyone knows each other. However, she invites people to do so to prevent further attacks from happening. She believes her dog Léa would still be alive if that was the case.

“Should we wait for a dog to attack a child or a human to act? she asked herself.

Different dog, same problem

last fall, Raphaële Berube was at the top of Mont Castor, in Matane, with her two dogs attached to a race car harness, when her little pin, Gustave, was attacked. A dog, which she claimed was a bull, with no owner or leash, appeared out of nowhere, grabbed her little dog by the neck and started shaking it.

“The first reaction I had to adrenaline was to try to put my hand in the bull’s mouth to try to separate it from Gus, but I was bitten,” the young woman said.

Raphaële Bérubé recounts that during this time, two elders with whom she spoke before the attack tried to help her by hitting the animal with sticks. “I, I kicked his ribs, I’ve never forced so much in my life, but he wouldn’t let go,” she recalls.

Finally, after what felt like an eternity, the pit bull let go of his dog after hearing someone’s whistle.

“Its masters are about 500 meters away, at the other end of the mountain. I shouted. I shouted murder. I could be heard 20 kilometers away and they didn’t come. And suddenly, I heard a hiss and the dog let go of Gustave,” according to Raphaële Bérubé, the dog’s owner, Gustave.

Trembling, Miss Bérubé quickly understood the urgency of the situation. “My dog ​​was skin like a rabbit, all cut and its skin torn off. I took Gus in my arms and we ran down the mountain,” she recounted.

At the vet on duty in Rimouski, the surgery to save Gustave lasted two and a half hours. His mistress said he came out with about 45 stitches and that the veterinarian, an expert in canine aggression, “couldn’t believe his wound”.

Although the pit bull’s owner left her contact information after the attack, she never wanted to return the $2,500 vet bill. Raphaële Bérubé therefore brought proceedings in the Small Claims Court.

The law is clear

However, the Éducaloi site clearly reminds us that owners are responsible for damage caused by their animals.

The owner of a dog is still liable for damage caused by his dog even if he had no control over it at the time the damage was caused.

Today, Raphaële Bérubé insists that her dog is fine, except for the large scar. “I think I was the most hurt in the story,” she admitted.

But the case didn’t end there. Raphaële Bérubé discovers that her friends are neighbors of the owner of the pit bull that attacked Gustave. His friends also claim that their dog was targeted by this bull, who, according to them, should never be on a leash.

Ms. Bérubé denounces the City of Matane’s inaction in this filing.

“I told them there had been an attack by a pit bull, firstly banned in the territory by city regulations, and secondly, it was a violent attack with a police record. and they do nothing,” according to Raphaële Bérubé, owner of the dog Gustave

This young woman insisted that she was not seriously considered by her contacts in the city.

The city would respond “that they do not deal with such cases” by mentioning the gaur evaluation, even after Raphaële Bérubé referred them to a veterinarian who specialized in surgery for Gustave. .

Raphaële Bérubé says: “If municipalities have regulations, let them apply. Imagine if I were with a child. And if I was alone without my dogs, would he jump on me? Because my dogs are not aggressive, they are super well behaved and we have just run eight kilometers. They were burned, but he attacked us. »

Anne Babin and Raphaële Bérubé both denounced the lack of effort and inaction by municipalities regarding their respective records. The two women hope that commitments will be made to prevent the drama they have experienced with their dogs from recurring.

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