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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

home : latest news : latest news October 03, 2015

5/7/2013 9:50:00 PM
Dog bite leads to quarantine
Special to The Courier

A dog is in quarantine after it bit a child on Friday and its owner could not provide proof of current rabies vaccination.

Prescott Valley Animal Control Supervisor Robin Petrovsky said that on Friday evening, a pit bulldog escaped its house in the 4900 block of Carla Vista when the owner opened the door. The dog ran into an adjacent vacant lot where a young boy was playing, and grabbed the child's leg. The bite was not a puncture wound, Petrovsky said, but it did break the skin and draw blood, requiring the quarantine of the dog.

A neighbor said he was doing yard work when he saw the dog dart through a partial fence and attack the child. The neighbor said the child screamed, he yelled, and the child's father, who was across the street, ran toward the boy. The neighbor said the owner called the dog and it went immediately home.

Petrovsky said the owner of the dog told her she had been keeping the dog inside because neighbors did not like it. She said the property was not fully fenced, but did contain a kennel and chain for the dog.

Because the owner could not produce proof of current vaccinations, the animal had to be quarantined off the premises rather than at its home, Petrovsky said. She said the owner was cooperative after Animal Control told her she must surrender the dog for quarantine.

Petrovsky said two neighbors on the street, including the child's mother, told her the dog in Friday's incident is often loose, and one woman said the dog had chased her, but Prescott Valley Police said they have no record of calls about the animal. She encouraged people who have such a problem to call dispatch and report the incident to establish a record. She stressed that people need to report the incident to dispatch rather than to ACO officers' personal voicemails, because the officers are usually out on the streets and can respond immediately if they are dispatched.

Petrovsky said she would submit Friday's incident to the town's attorney for review under Prescott Valley's vicious dog ordinance. If a dog is determined vicious, the town can require the owner to carry additional insurance, and require special fencing or enclosure to contain the animal. In extreme circumstances, the town can remove the dog. However, she said, one bite is usually not enough for a dog to be declared vicious, because "accidents can happen, depending on the situation."

If the dog in Friday's incident is healthy after 10 days in quarantine, it may return home, Petrovsky said, but the owner will be cited and fined in accordance with dog at large and dog bite ordinances, and will have to pay for current vaccinations and boarding while in quarantine.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: Safety First

Dear Reality Check.
In the interest of safety should not all dogs with or without a current rabies vaccination be quarantined after biting someone?

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Von Deck

She should be charged with attempted murder if what the neighbors say is true. Note to unscrupulous dog owners. I'm sick of this. One of these days your dog is going to chase after the wrong person. If you want fluffy to survive...

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: pit bull

It will bite again.

They always repeat.

Make the owner build a fence now.

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: Reality check

Even if the owner can proof that the dog was vaccinated, and even if the bite doesn't break the skin, the dog is still quarantined. Which means either the rabies vaccine doesn't work or quarantine is meant more for punishing the owner than protecting the public.

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: Carl Imparel

I wonder if it was a small terrier if this would make the news...

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: pitbull owner

I have a 120lb love bug but the day he sets his teeth on my child is the day i kill him myself- as goes for any dog

Posted: Wednesday, May 08, 2013
Article comment by: good idea

There ya go send the dog back so hopefully it really hurts a small child next time...just like all the child molesters around here. ...

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