While the following story did not happen here in Chicago, the circumstances of the incident could happen in any apartment complex in the entire country. In a hugely populated area like Chicago, it is even more important.
A 10-year-old boy was mauled in his apartment after he was left alone with two dogs. Thankfully, someone else in the apartment complex heard the boy’s screams and knocked down the door to the boy’s apartment. The man saw two pit bulls biting and attacking the young boy. After struggling with the animals for a few minutes, the police entered the apartment. According to the police, the pit bulls then rushed towards them, and the officers discharged their weapons at the dogs. One was killed, while the other was struck. The condition of the second dog is unknown.
Clearly these dogs were a danger, even though many reports indicated that the dogs had not shown signs of aggressive behavior before. In apartments all around the country, there are surely many pet owners with dangerous dogs — but there quickest defense is to say that “the dogs really aren’t dangerous, they’re usually very sweet.”
It may true. The dogs may be very sweet most of the time. But the fact of the matter is that dogs are animals — and they instincts and defense mechanisms that may stray from the perception of dogs that many have. It’s easy to picture a cute, cuddly dog that is perfectly obedient. No one wants to imagine a wild, out-of-control mutt.
Should a dog attack or bite someone, the owners of the dog will immediately come into question. If negligence can be proven, the victim (or victims) of the attack could file civil claims against the owner.
Source: The Star-Ledger, “Newark child in critical condition after dog attack,” James Queally, Feb. 12, 2014