Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Neighbors Save Shih Tzu Attacked by Pit Bull

By Dave Nethers, FOX 8 News

Tonya Tillman says her one-year-old Shih Tzu named 'Boss' seems in constant pain, doesn't want to do anything but sleep and seems more defensive after he was attacked and nearly killed by a Pit Bull on August 1st.

Tillman says 'Boss' was tied up in her front yard while her daughter was also outside, when the Pit Bull came from a neighbor's house across the street and cornered her much smaller dog near the front porch.

She believes 'Boss' is alive only because neighbors came to her rescue.

"He got up and she tried to fight the dog and the neighbors were throwing chairs from that end and from that end," said Tillman, pointing to both sides of the house.

She says they were also trying to beat the Pit Bull off with posts and worried about her daughter.

"They were trying to help Boss and they were trying to get my daughter back into the house because they were scared the pit bull was going to attack her," said Tillman.

She says the Pit Bull finally ran back to where it came from, but six days after the attack the injuries to 'Boss' were still healing, and Tillman says she still needs $2,000 worth of surgery.

"His damage is in the back, his hind legs, his abdomen, his colon area, we thought his tail had been ripped off but it hasn't there's just a big hole there," Tillman added.

Her story is similar to one told by Kim Paynther, another neighbor who says the same Pit Bull chased her dog around her house and ended up in their basement.

Paynther says when her dog was being chased she decided to go to the back door and open it so her dog could get inside.

When he ran in the Pit Bull ran in behind it before they could get the door closed and cornered it in the basement.

Payanther says her husband ran to get a board to try and beat off the attacking dog.

"My husband had to take a big ol' stick and beat the dog several times before he let go."

After the attack on Tillman's dog, Akron Police charged Cliafous Jenkins with multiple counts, including having an unconfined Pit Bull, keeping a vicious dog, not carrying the required Pit Bull Insurance, failure to register, failure to vaccinate and failure to control the dog.

In Akron Municipal court on Tuesday, Jenkins agreed to plead guilty to the charges and told Fox 8 News afterward that the dog was not his.

"I was house sitting the dog for my cousin," Jenkins explained, adding, "I was gone and they said she got loose two times and the last time she ended up attacking my neighbors dog."

Neighbors say the Pit Bull never showed any aggression toward people, but believe it has a reputation of not getting along well with other animals.

When asked, Jenkins agreed. "Right, correct, it doesn't like animals, but it won't do anything to humans" he told Fox 8.

Jenkins assured Fox 8 the Pit Bull was no longer at his Seward Avenue house, but was returned to his cousin who, he said, lives on Brown Street.

On Tuesday Fox 8 could not find his cousin or the dog.

Tillman says when police were at her house after the attack they did not take the Pit Bull away, and when they showed up the following day they once again left without the animal, who she worries will attack again if it has the opportunity.

Fox 8 spoke with a supervisor at Akron's Animal Wardens office on Tuesday who made a note of the date and location and said he and a dog warden would be looking into it but said if the dog is still out there they would get it.

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