Dog attack leads to 40 stitches

A young boy visiting family in the McIntyre subdivision on the weekend was attacked by a dog and received 40 stitches to his mouth and throat.

A young boy visiting family in the McIntyre subdivision on the weekend was attacked by a dog and received 40 stitches to his mouth and throat.

The boy, between 12 to 14 years old, was petting the husky-wolf cross when it lunged for his face on December 11.

The owner of the dog was in the washroom during the attack, but ran out when he heard the commotion, said senior bylaw services constable, Dave Pruden.

The owner found the boy holding onto his neck and large amounts of blood flowing to the ground.

The boy was taken to hospital where he received stitches and was released.

It wasn’t the first time the dog was known to attack a child.

In July, the six-year-old dog attacked a young relative who was visiting the house. As a result of that attack, which was less severe than the second incident, the child received stitches to the face, said Pruden.

City bylaw services investigated that incident, but didn’t charge the owner because the parents of the child who was attacked didn’t want to lay charges.

Instead, bylaw services sent a letter to the owners informing them that if the dog showed further signs of aggression the owners could be taken to court and the dog deemed dangerous.

“We were respecting the family wishes (of not charging the owners) so as not to cause undue hardship,” said Pruden.

“But people need to take it seriously when they’re served paperwork.”

Following the second attack, the owners shot and killed their dog.

City bylaw services heard of the second incident on December 12. They have charged the owners of the dog. It carries a $200 fine.

The city deals with about six serious dog bites a year and 15-20 dog bites that don’t result in injuries, said Pruden.

Bylaw services also investigates about 50 to 80 “aggressive acts” per year, including some dogs that are repeat offenders, he added.

This summer, the case of Trevor the dog, the Rottweiler-German shepherd who became the centre of a court battle between the Humane Society and bylaw services, put a spotlight on how the city deals with aggressive dogs.

“I think the issue is on the radar screen more,” he said.

“There’s a lot of stuff entangled with Trevor, though.”

Most of the public doesn’t want dogs out there that are able to bite people, he added.

The husky-wolf cross dog involved in the attacks had its rabies and vaccination shots up to date.

Contact Vivian Belik at

vivianb@yukon-news.com