Public Hearing for Dog Attack Set for 2/27

The Mansfield Board of Selectmen will hold a public hearing for a complaint filed on January 3 of concerning a vicious dog attack.

Editors note: In response to questions in the comments section on the breed of the dog, please be aware that the dog is a pointer/hound mutt.


Original Story

The Mansfield Board of Selectmen voted 5-0 last night to have a public hearing and accept a report by animal control concerning a complaint filed about a vicious dog attack.

The public hearing will take place on February 27 as recommended by Town Manager William Ross to leave time to give notice and advertise the hearing.

Filed by the lawyer of Dawn Herbert-Miller, the complaint from January 3 stems from a dog attack on Herber-Miller’s six year old son.

The bites from the dog reportedly left the child in such sever damage that he needed over 400 stitches, surgery, and ongoing treatment.

Since the attack, the dog has been confined to the home of its owners Michael and Virginia Bailey.

In the past, the town has ordered animals deemed dangerous to be euthanized. Last December, similar actions were taken against a pitbull at the Mansfield Animal Shelter.

If the decision is made to euthanize the dog, the owners can appeal the ruling in court.

Do you think that the town should be able to euthanize an animal if deemed to be dangerous? Tell us in the comment section.

lisa edgett February 19, 2013 at 07:24 PM
Nancy..I will love you forever...people that don't understand the unknown condemn or are frightened by it. This is the same way of thinking that kept races on separate streets. Ignorance breeds ignorance...Elizabeth has probably never once met a pitbull, only reads about them and believes everything she reads on the internet..where, I'm sure, she's already probably met a French model. Give me a break!
lisa edgett February 19, 2013 at 07:31 PM
Elizabeth...you should hook up with Howard..we used to call people like you that had misconceived notions about a whole breed, race, gender without the true facts a really bad word..
Fedup with nonsense February 19, 2013 at 08:56 PM
Blaming the dog is no different than blaming a fatal car accident on the car. This is an aweful incident that has severly injured a child. A dog or any animal has basic instincts when approached inappropriately, fight or flight. I'm not saying this child was wrong by approching, the child could very well have never been taught HOW to approach or NOT to approach. I know first hand when a dog has only two choices, and it chooses fight it can escalate from a nip to a full attack in a milisecond due to several things like screaming, running, baseball bats. It's likely the child was screaming which is understandable, or maybe the dog felt trapped...who knows. HowardJohnson this is where you need to learn that approaching a dog with a bat will only threaten the dog. It will either fight or flight. 50/50 shot. You willing to take that? There is usually more to the story that causes these things to happen. And unfortunately this dogs life hangs in the balance because of the negligence of the owner and possibly the parent. The reason some of us are sensitive to this subject is because there is discriminatory laws that affect us. If this were a pitbull type dog (mind you most cannot correctly identify them) this dog would already be dead. Elizabeth, until you have walked a mile in my shoes, or any responsible pitbull owners shoes, you really should think before you speak. Just because dog was raised from a puppy doesn't mean it was raised or bred responsibly.....
lisa edgett February 19, 2013 at 09:33 PM
"And I suppose you know about the Chicago jogger.." what a dumb argument. There's a million stories out there about different breeds that bite...if pitbulls weren't getting such a bad rap animal planet wouldn't have shows like pitbulls and parolees, pit boss or cesaer Milan speaking out for this breed...all u have is a couple stories you sought to find on the internet. For every negative story you find I can find ten that negate them...don't be a parrot and repeat the experiences of others Elizabeth..I can volunteer a real pitbull for you to meet so you can form an actual legitimate fact based opinion on the breed if you're not afraid to go out of your element and actually live life instead of just read about it. Just sayin...
Vikki Foley February 20, 2013 at 02:18 AM
Nancy Julian writes; "We are not pit bull paranoids" From Nancy Julian's Facebook page-AKA Francis John " My name is Nancy Julian. I've started coordinating BSL Awareness Walks! We are a gathering of Responsible Bully Owners and Their Well-Behaved Dogs Changing Minds One Walk At A Time." "If your dog is dog aggressive or human aggressive, but you feel you can control her/him, please walk at the back of the pack. " "please, no human aggressive or dog aggressive dogs and no break sticks. Thanks" Your words not mine. I'd call that paranoid. Vikki Foley Advocate for Dog Bite Victims
yerkillinme February 20, 2013 at 03:55 AM
Fed up, the comparison you draw between a car being responsible for an accident and an aggressive dog attacking a child is ludicrous. If left to its own devices, a car just sits there and harms no one. If left to it's own devices an aggressive dog will attack and cause injury. I keep reading comments about how the 6 year old startled the dog, how it's a natural instinct for a dog to act that way if he's startled or feels threatened, how the boy should have been taught how to approach the dog or the dog should have been socialized w the boy.. That's nonsense. The article says the boy walked up to the dog and the dog attacked. If a dog's reaction to being walked up to or even startled by a six year old is to maul that six year old, the dog needs to be put down. I'm not blaming the dog for whatever the reason he became aggressive (abuse, breeding, training, etc.) but this dog can no longer be trusted around children.
K February 20, 2013 at 01:17 PM
Well how would you respond to being suddenly awoken by a stranger in your home? If it were me- I'd defend my home and my family. Same as this dog was doing.
yerkillinme February 20, 2013 at 04:05 PM
That's how you'd react if a six year old child came into your home as a guest accompanied by your 15 year old family member? Where was it reported that the dog was suddenly awoken by a stranger and had to defend his home? The dog's reaction, regardless of whether he was woken up or even startled, was entirely inappropriate and indicates a level of aggression and dangerousness that requires him being removed from a human family environment.
HJ February 20, 2013 at 04:24 PM
K, would you go the "Bladerunner" route and just grab your gun and shoot anyone?
Nancy Julian February 20, 2013 at 05:06 PM
Vikki - is Colleen Lynn from dogsbite.org your hero? Are you perhaps in collusion with her, because you have employed the same tactics she and her cronies do trolling people''s fb page. Why you were busy trolling my page, why not just look up BSL Awareness Walks - there's a page for the walks! People like you who feel the need to publicly share someone's fb moniker are very scary and one wonders why you need to do it or what you get out of it. That being said - if you had gone to the BSL Awareness page and copied the current intro., you would see the language has been changed to dog and human reactive dogs. In the responsible pit bull community, owners and advocates know what we mean when we say aggressive, but it's due to uneducated people like yourself that we have to change the wording. Responsible pit bull owners are extremely aware and educated about their dogs because any type of mannerism displayed by the dog has and will be misconstrued by the public - a pitbull glances sideways - he's going to attack; a pit bull yawns - he will eat you; a pit bull bark, he's aggressive and so on. We know our dogs have to be exemplary in public, we have no choice, our dogs are judged everyday, everywhere and the media loves to incite the public about these dogs as do those who hate them, yet have never met them. I will post BSL Awareness page below. I've always been hesitant of using my real name when making a comment and it's because of unethical people like you.
Nancy Julian February 20, 2013 at 05:06 PM
andrea February 20, 2013 at 05:45 PM
Well said Kim, you are absolutely right, if it were a pit bull who had attacked the child it would have been plastered all over the headlines. Shame on the reporters indeed for not disclosing the breed of the dog.
lisa edgett February 20, 2013 at 05:52 PM
Vikki (hah! Which ironically changes to collie with my auto-correct) I don't have the time of day to write some nobody reporter from the patch..I'd never even heard of this paper until I found a commonality between different reports of the story that had no listing of the breed. The patch happened to be the only one that different reference the breed but took the time to reference a prior bite case that involved a pitbull..that was my reason for stopping here. As far as veterinary behaviorist comments..are you a veterinarian? Because that's what I'm currently attending school for so make sure you really understand what you're talking about...the veterinarians I know get bit more by Chihuahuas than pitbulls. Its obvious you have absolutely no idea what you're talking about..i'd say it's almost as if you're speaking Japanese but that's my second language so I ruled that out. There may be a bad dog in every bunch but the backlash pitbulls have to endure far outweighs that of any other dog because of people like you. Why don't you hang out with responsible pitbull owners for a day instead of sticking to a stigma that very much resembles the same prejudices people have fought their whole life to prove wrong?
lisa edgett February 20, 2013 at 06:19 PM
Vikki some real statistics: http://atts.org/breed-statistics/statistics-page1/
K February 20, 2013 at 09:35 PM
That's what the article said if you read it..... No one is speaking about guns we are talking about a dog who bit a young child so don't take this out of context. The dog did not kill anyone. The dog likely was awoken and reacted without thinking. If I were sleeping and someone approached me that I never have smelled before and was frightened, I'm sorry but I would defend myself as I hope you all would too. If someone was in your home that you don't know and you couldn't understand English, you would either fight or flight as someone else mentioned. Unfortunately, this dog decided to fight and he may pay the ultimate price for it. My dogs on the other hand would for sure flight- I just don't think death is a suitable punishment. Dogs have a life and feelings. They should not be judged by one incident alone. If it had happened more than once, that's a different story but it happened once. Give the dude a break! you all are likely cold-hearted animal haters if you all can't see someone else's perspective. I see yours, but I don't believe death is the answer. We have murderers rape and kill children and they get a life time prison sentence. Why would the dog get death for biting in self-defense?
yerkillinme February 20, 2013 at 11:04 PM
K:"The dog likely was awoken and reacted without thinking." There's nothing in the story to suggest the dog was either awaken or startled, the story reports that th boy walked up to the dog and was viciously attacked. However, If a dog reacts to being woken by a six year year old who is guest in the home and is accompanied by an adult family member of that dog by mauling the six year old, then that dog needs to be put down. When did it become ok for a dog being woken or startled to viciously attack a six year old to the point the dog needed to be pulled off the child and the child required 400 stitches & hours of surgery?
lisa edgett February 21, 2013 at 05:31 PM
I had no problem with punishment for the dog attacking a young child, my argument was with a reporter that decided to implicate a pitbull by not mentioning the dogs breed but mentioning a prior bite case that did reference a pitbull..like he figured the story wasn't as good if it wasn't the eviiiiiiil bully breed.
M Cordova February 21, 2013 at 08:07 PM
This is the most ludicrous string of comments I've ever seen. Who cares about the breed! True of a dog as of a person - It matters not what you think, what you believe, or what say - It only matters what you do. End the dog.
Laura DelMonaco February 25, 2013 at 10:22 PM
I have read all of the comments left on this page, I just wonder why everyone is blaming the childs mother, they obviosly were neighbors, the poor child probably knew the dog, who KNOWS he startled the dog? anyone thats posted? Probably not....I have been told by Vets in the past that once a dog tastes blood, it will look for it again (ex. Rare steak) And this is the last thing I will say about it it being a rescue dog and being abused in its life. #1 The family should have been notified. #2 What good does it do now? Its done that little boy is the one that pays. Not the dog, probably been forgotten by him. Leave that mother alone...If you cant trust or rely on you neighbors then what?
Don Ready February 27, 2013 at 06:07 AM
Breed doesn't matter, any dog can be aggressive. Please educate yourself Howard because you come off extremely ignorant. And its sad how this dog has to suffer for the negligence of the child's parents. Its not like this happened at Memorial Park it, happened in THE DOG'S yard..why was the child aloud to wander in there in the first place? But hey, lets point fingers at the dog. That will make every thing better in the end o_o
Vickie February 27, 2013 at 11:14 AM
He's a pointer hound mix...
Tina Silverio February 27, 2013 at 01:45 PM
I thought that i had posted about that "once a dog [any animal] tastes blood..." thing but maybe I'd deleted it. I think the dog was probably startled. it's not anyone's fault, not the dog's fault, it's an instinctual animal. Just , to save the dog's life and preserve the peace, send the muttster out of town, with the appropriate notifications attached.
Susan February 27, 2013 at 11:13 PM
I agree with Kim, Prayers go out to the family and hope for a speedy recovery for this poor boy. This is a horrible situation all around and I don't want to take away from the seriousness of any of it. Unfortunately, there are times when euthanization is the only option for an aggressive dog and while I do not like it, I understand why it has to happen in some circumstances. I do however want to say that It is unfortunate that a public hearing was not done when It came to a beautiful boy we all know as Rocco. Rocco was euthanized without any public hearing. He was never given the chance to have the REAL facts told. The people and professionals who had met him, evaluated him and deemed him completely adoptable and non aggressive were never given an opportunity to speak the truth. The offer of a reputable rescue to eval and foster prior to the so called growling incident was denied. His fate was decided based on one persons account of a so called growl . I'm relieved to know the town is reviewing this case in a public forum and the facts will all be presented and a fair decision will be made. I only wish that the same procedure and hearing had been done for others such as Rocco and It saddens me that this was not the case.
Susan February 27, 2013 at 11:21 PM
Well said Kim. This whole situation is terrible for everyone involved and it is always a tough decision to decide on a dogs fate. While I'm relieved to know they are presenting this case in a public forum and a decision will be made by the town selectmen and not just one individual, I am truly sad that Rocco was never given that opportunity.
Susan February 28, 2013 at 12:01 AM
Amen Lisa!
ChangeBeginsWithYou February 28, 2013 at 02:46 AM
This "Pitbull Bite" in town everyone keeps referring to, is not correct. Rocco the pitbull that was killed by Mansfield Animal Control in December, the story which this article references, never bit, harmed or hurt anyone. He growled (made a noise, a form of canine communication)....and was deemed vicious and killed without allowing for ANY fair review or consideration for the MANY alternatives to euthanasia presented. Case in point, that people just spew off and dont have their facts straight. I am very sorry for this boy, these families and all involved. My heart goes out to them. However, there is a big difference between a dog actions and someones opinion of the possibility of actions. Rocco was not given the same courtesy of a hearing, and he didnt DO anything. Regardless of opinion of what kind of behavior the animal showed in this case, I'm glad the town of Mansfield is holding a hearing for all sides to be represented. If only they showed the same courtesy to Rocco.. Contradiction after contradiction. RIP ROCCO <3
stephanie elizabeth February 28, 2013 at 03:03 AM
youre a fucking loser, i hope someone cracks your skull in with a bat.
stephanie elizabeth February 28, 2013 at 03:06 AM
joe youre ridiculous, for all you know that brat was harassing the dog."outraged"? you sound like a lonely crotchety old man, this innate hatred and immediate guilty conviction of animals in this country is disgusting.
stephanie elizabeth February 28, 2013 at 03:07 AM
breed means nothing, i own a pit bull and he's a certified therapy dog. dont be ignorant. if you want to look at statistically "aggressive" dogs, take a look at chihuahua stats, but theyre small and "cute" so nobody takes notice. educate yourself.
James Murphy February 28, 2013 at 09:20 PM
This is all upsetting. That first comment about the pit bull is very offensive because I'm a 15 year old boy and my pit bull is a family dog that i have had sunce i was little and I love her. Also, we don't know what the kid did to the dog to make it attack. The kids parents should have been paying attention to him. Don't ever say that a dog is just a dog, because dogs are friends and family. In this state, people don't get sentenced to death if they attack or even rape a six year old boy, so why should a dog be euthanized? Dogs are living creatures like us, so don't ever say that "it's just a dog." No pet should be treated any worse than humans, because we're animals too.


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