Entries in Pit Bull (2)


Dog Rescues Unconscious Owner from Oncoming Train

Courtesy Angell Animal Medical Center(BOSTON) -- A Massachusetts pit bull named Lilly took on a freight train last week to save her owner, who collapsed unconscious onto the tracks during a late-night walk in Shirley. The 8-year-old dog used her teeth to pull Christine Spain, 54, off the tracks as the train approached. While Spain emerged unscathed, Lilly lost a leg.

The train's engineer, who didn't want to give his name, said he spotted the woman and her dog on the tracks just after midnight on May 3, according to the Angell Animal Medical Center in Boston. He said he tried to stop the train in time, but feared he'd hit them both. When he got out, he found that Spain was unharmed, but the train's wheels had sliced through Lilly's front right leg, which was bleeding heavily.

An animal control officer rushed Lilly to an emergency animal hospital in nearby Acton, where Spain's son, Boston Police Officer David Lanteigne, met them in the parking lot. Lanteigne said he had a feeling of dread as he got out of his car, but Lilly let him know she was OK.

"The first thing I see is just those big, beautiful eyes just looking at me, and next to her, I saw her right front paw was severely damaged," he told ABC News. "I saw her tail wagging the first time right there."

Lanteigne said he rescued Lilly three years ago, thinking she'd make a good therapy dog for Spain, who had battled alcoholism, depression and anxiety for many years. He said Spain doted on the dog, and often defrosted packets of green beans to cut them up and put them in Lilly's food. Eventually, he said, Spain's drinking decreased.

"We saved Lilly, and Lilly saved my mom's life," he said. "My hope is that this story is going to get out and show what pit bulls are truly about. I hope by Lilly going through this, it's going to get other dogs homes."

Lilly underwent two surgeries last weekend at the Angell Animal Medical Center. Steel plates were implanted to repair her fractured pelvis and support her left leg. She now has a long scar where her right front leg was amputated. Angell spokesman Rob Halpin said Lilly's doctors expect she'll be able to walk again, but adjusting to three legs will be hard for the senior dog.

Spain, who Lanteigne said relapsed before her collapse last week upon hearing some bad news, was arrested on the scene and arraigned the following day in Ayer District Court on charges of obstruction and danger on a railroad track, walking on a railroad track and animal cruelty, Shirely Police Executive Secretary Ann Whiting told ABC News. Spain was not arrested on any alcohol-related charges, but she was placed in protective custody because of intoxication, said Whiting.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Pit Bull Kills Pregnant Owner in California Home

Michael Jang / Getty Images(PACIFICA, Calif.) -- A pit bull attacked and killed his pregnant owner in a Pacifica, Calif. home.

Darla Napora, 32, was attacked by her unneutered, 2-year-old male pit bull Thursday. Her husband, Greg Napora, found her bloody body in the couple's living room with the pit bull, named Gunner, hovering over her.

"When we arrived, what we found was the victim lying in her front room. She was non-responsive, not breathing and suffering major trauma to her upper body," said Pacifica Police Capt. David Bertini.

Greg Napora told police that he had corralled the dog in a back room. The back room led into the backyard and the brindled pit bull managed to escape into the backyard.

The dog began to approach the police and first responders.

"He was just covered in blood," Bertini said. "There were also bystanders in the area. We were going to take no chances with that dog."

Police shot and killed the dog.

An autopsy is underway to determine how exactly Darla Napora died.

"We can't say whether she bled to death or she may have had a heart attack, we don't know," said Bertini.

A necropsy is being performed on the dog to determine if there's anything physically or medically wrong with the animal that would have caused the attack.

Another pit bull was present at the couple's home. Police said it didn't appear that the younger female pitbull was involved in the attack.

As a precaution, animal control took the dog. It's unclear at this time if that pitbull will be returned to the Napora family.

When reached by phone, Darla Napora's family was too overcome by grief to speak.

Police would not comment on how far along Darla Napora was in her pregnancy. The Oakland Tribune reported that she was nearly six months along.

Neighbors told ABC News affiliate KGO that the dogs appeared normal. The Naporas had a "Beware of the Dog" sign on their home.

Police said that they had received no complaints about the dogs in the past.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio