An Ocean Beach pit bull crashed through a metal fence yesterday – April 10th – in the morning as a woman walked her dogs down the alley of 4400 block of Santa Cruz Avenue. The dog attacked one of the woman’s dogs, clamping onto it that it took the pit bull’s owner who tried to break it up, to have to hit it with a metal pole before the pit released its clench.
Animal Control was called to the scene, the pit captured and taken. As the dog has been regulated by Animal Control since 2010 when it was deemed a public nuisance after it bit someone ‘off-property’, it will be put down.
It all began between 8:15 and 8:30 am on Wednesday as Danielle Johnston was walking her three dogs down the Santa Cruz alley. One of her dogs was a German Shepard.
Without warning, a Pit Bull on the other side of a metal fence charged at the fence and crashed through, attacking the Shepard.
Johnston told Channel 6:
“I heard the dog charge the fence basically 0-90 and it came out and attacked. The dog stayed clamped and wouldn’t let go.”
The 3-year old Pit Bull – named “Blue” – got a powerful grip on Johnston’s dog, so strong that neither she nor the Pit’s owner, Mark Bailey – who rushed out to try to break up the fight – could not break them apart. That’s when Bailey reportedly “had to drop a steel pole on the pit bull about five times before it would release its clench, according to Johnston.”
Bailey told the news:
“My dog attacked the other dog and I was trying to break it up.”
Bobbi Bailey, Mark’s wife, also stated:
“We take every precaution to keep her contained, as long as she is contained she is fine. This is the first time she has gone through the fence.”
The Shepherd, Sage, had neck punctures and was taken to a veterinarian; Johnston had her left hand bitten, and Mark Bailey suffered bloody arms and legs. He initially told the media that the Shepard injured him, but police stated that his own dog did it.
As Animal Control took Blue away to euthanize her, Mark Bailey was in tears. He told the media that he had gotten her from people who trained dogs a couple of years ago and she had been improving her disposition.
Bailey – obviously very upset, said:
“They’re not bad dogs. They have that name just because. It’s people that train those animals to be meaner.
“It’s wrong man, she doesn’t deserve to die. You’ve got to do something about those people that don’t know how to take care of animals or train them, it’s wrong, it’s wrong, I’m losing my dog because of someone else’s training.”
Initially sympathetic when she heard that the Pit was going to put down, Johnston changed her tune when she found out that the dog had bitten somebody else. She told Channel 6:
“The system has failed because you know they have these rules to keep it from happening again, and it did happen again.”
Obviously a dog-lover, Johnston said she believes that the training and care of the dog determines its behaviors.
Once a dog is registered as a public nuisance, it is required by San Diego County to be spayed or neutered, to be kept within an enclosed and locked area, to wear a muzzle in public, and to be kept out of dog parks. Owners are also required to have at least $100,000 of liability insurance and their homes inspected annually to ensure that rules are followed.
If the dog’s owner does not comply, the dog will be captured and euthanized within 24 hours. And this is exactly what happened in this situation with Blue.
Although pit bulls have recently been targeted as dangerous dogs, Holmes said they judge each dog upon its actions, not breed.