ASTATULA, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - One dog was killed and another severely injured by a newly adopted pet, authorities say. That pet, a Tosa mixed breed dog named "Reno," was later euthanized by Lake County officials.
According to dog’s brand new owner, when she got home from the animal shelter, she tethered "Reno" to the tree. She said, within 10 minutes, he had popped his collar and attacked her Chihuahau that she had just let out to go to the bathroom. She killed her Chihuahau and then ran about a few blocks away and attacked another dog.
“I'm so sorry! I'm so sorry that I was the one that brought that here!” said Stacy Bates.
Bates apologized for the path of death and destruction her brand new dog caused his first 30 minutes home.
Baxter, a four-year old miniature Schnauzer, was on his evening walk with his owner around 6:30 p.m. Monday, when they were attacked.
“He’s got 30 to 40 stitches -- a couple in his head, couple in his side,” said Rodger Wilson.
His dog is scarred with deep cuts and bite marks all over his head and neck. Wilson says they’re both still horrified. “He came out and blindsided me,” said Wilson of the Reno’s attack. Wilson says the dog knocked both of them over. “He was going for my dog's neck.”
Wilson said he used his walking stick to hit the dog in the head, between six and eight times, trying to stop the attack.
“He bit the stick in half. I had given up, because I'd lost my strength by then -- my hemoglobin being so low from chemo treatment. I was screaming bloody murder, 'Help! Someone help please help me!” said Wilson.
He said his neighbor ran up with a shovel and hit the dog several times, before the angry dog ran off. Lake County Animal Control responded and caught "Reno."
The adoption papers from the Lake County Animal Shelter (LCAS) that Bates signed reads, “dog has a happy demeanor and appears to be soft and wiggly." Three sentences later, it warns the dog, "should not be around cats at all."
According to the incident report, LCAS workers said they verbally warned Bates about "Reno" not liking other small animals, including small dogs. However, that warning is not written in the adoption papers that FOX 35 obtained from Lake County officials.
A spokesperson for Lake County released a statement saying, in part, that their adoption protocol was followed. It also said that "Reno" was involved in a "tragic incident due to adopter carelessness."
Law enforcment issued Bates a notice to appear for a hearing next week and a $640 fine, citing her for nusance animal running loose, and attack or bite to persons or animals.