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Dangerous dogs must be registered

Two dangerous dogs are already being registered in Pike County. Both dogs belong to residents in Molena. According to animal control officer David Allen, dogs are registered as dangerous or vicious only after they aggressively attack and injure or kill a person or animal off of their owner’s property. ’It gets owners to take the actions of their animals more seriously,’ he said. ‘Dogs are pets but dogs are predators as well.’ Allen responded to the report of a dog attack in Molena Aug. 18. According to witness reports, two dogs who were not on their property were showing aggression toward people standing outside a residence within the city limits. Two other people tried to distract the dogs and they were attacked. One of the dogs bit a victim on the hand and the other person was scraped during the incident. One of the dogs was killed at the time of the attack and the other is registered in the county as a dangerous dog. Molena resident Judy Merritt filed a report with the sheriff’s office and Pike’s animal control officer Sept. 17 after a pack of dogs killed her Labrador retriever Choco. She believes the same dogs seriously injured another of her pets six weeks before. The other dog who was attacked, named Cinnamon, was adopted as a stray and the family spent $900 on veterinary bills to keep him alive. She had been keeping her three dogs inside since the incident. The morning of the fatal attack, she said she let the dogs run outside while she was getting ready for work. ’One of my other labs ran back in the house like he was afraid of something. When I went outside I could hear the dogs attacking him in the woods.’ ’I got scared because they were so loud and if they’ll attack a dog, they’ll jump on a human,’ she said. ‘I went down there but I was scared they would jump on me too. I called my husband and we went back there and we got to see Choco a couple minutes before he died. I think it’s sad that neighbors don’t care if their dogs attack and kill other people’s pets.’ Merritt said her husband had been walking by himself through the woods one day and the same dogs he saw running away from Choco were acting aggressively towards him. ’I think we need an animal control ordinance in this county,’ she said. ‘If a dog kills another animal it should be put to sleep. If they do it to one animal, they’ll do it to another one. There’s got to be something done. It’s like they have more rights than a human. If the people who own them don’t do anything, they’ll just go on their merry way and kill again.’

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