Falmouth Pit Bull Considered Dangerous Following Several ‘Terrifying’ Attacks

FALMOUTH – The owner of a pit bull deemed to be dangerous in Falmouth has until Monday to find an alternative solution for the pet.

At a hearing earlier this month, the Falmouth Board of Selectmen upheld the determination by Police Captain Brian Reid that the dog is too dangerous for the town.

The matter will continue at a May 20 hearing, where owner Deborah Ewald, of East Falmouth, must present a viable solution for the animal. If Ewald does not find an alternative for her five-year-old pit bull, Kiwi, the town will move to humanely euthanize it.

Ewald must find either a specialized trainer or a rescue organization willing to take the aggressive pit bull. She suggested having a veterinary behavioral specialist look at Kiwi.

The original motion to euthanize the dog failed in a 2-3 vote. Selectmen Douglas Jones and Samuel Patterson both voted in favor of putting the dog down.

Ewald’s neighbors on Sam Turner Road have complained on at least three separate occasions. They say the dog has repeatedly charged at and attacked neighbors and their pets while on walks, most recently in February.

“I’m here because I have had three fairly terrifying incidents with this animal. Very aggressive. I requested the dangerousness hearing, and then after the dangerousness hearing there was a fourth incident that left me prisoner in my own home basically because the dog was loose on my property trying to attack my dogs through the fence,” said Ewald’s neighbor, Sally Houghton.

All incidents the dog was involved in it was unrestrained.

“The first one was May 30. I was walking my dogs out to my car and they were both on a leash. I have a pretty decent distance from my front door to my car and as I got to my vehicle, that dog, without warning, came charging across the street and pinned my 30-pound border collie mix to the car. I screamed my head off until my neighbor came out and removed it. Fortunately, nobody was hurt,” Houghton explained.

“I had another incident on June 27 where I was returning home from a dog walk with both of my animals in the car. The dog was across the street with a young male. They were putting the trash out and it wasn’t leashed. It came charging across and tried to attack me and my dogs while we were in my vehicle, so I couldn’t exit my vehicle until he physically came across the street and removed the dog.”

Houghton says the latest incident, which occurred on February 16, was “probably the scariest by far.”

“I was with my partner, whose here with his daughter tonight. We were walking the dogs into the house after coming back from a dog walk. Again, this dog without warning comes charging across the street and physically attacked my 14-year-old lab mix. My partner had to physically throw himself on the dog and try to beat it off my dog because it wouldn’t let go. So that was pretty scary. Basically, I’ve had to rearrange everything I do in relation to taking my dogs out of my house,” she said.

A fourth incident, described by Captain Reid, occurred in September, when Kiwi attacked another dog at Old Silver Beach, ultimately having to be restrained by an off-duty State Trooper.

“One of those included an incident that did not involve Sally Houghton and involved an off duty State Trooper, David Dunphy, who interacted with the dog on September 2, 2018 at Old Silver Beach,” said Captain Reid.  

“Trooper Dunphy observed this animal jump from a moving car and attack other dogs at the Old Silver Beach lot. He interceded and separated the dogs.”

Since the original hearing at the beginning of May, Kiwi has been held by the town’s animal control unit. The dog has been reportedly aggressive and hard to handle in that setting as well.

By TIM DUNN, CapeCod.com News Center 

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