Animal control votes to euthanize dog that attacked boy

Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2001

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The Fairbanks North Star Borough Animal Control Commission has voted in favor of euthanizing a dog that attacked a boy.

The attack on 9-year-old Billy DeLany took place June 17 in Lara Poirrier's yard in North Pole.

Animal Control Officer Stephen Rice testified that the boy had been playing with water pistols with the Poirrier's son when the dog was accidentally let out of the house. He said the dog chased the boy and bit him six times, including bites on the left forearm, lower back, left and right thighs.

Poirrier told the commission the dog had never been a behavior problem before and was inadvertently provoked. She said the boy was using a squirt gun that looked and sounded like a real firearm. And she said the boy had squirted the dog through a porch screen door.

''I've had other children in our yard and she's not barked at them or displayed aggressive behavior,'' she said. ''My dog is (almost) 10 years old with no bite history and no history of aggression.''

Poirrier asked the council to release the dog back to her. She said the family had just built a 10-foot by 30-foot kennel in their yard, with a six-foot high fence. She said the family was prepared to leave Goliath in the kennel, inside the house or in a small kennel in the garage at all times.

But Rice recommended that the dog be euthanized because he said it could attack again. The commission voted 7-1 to uphold Rice's recommendation.

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