(NORTH EAST, MD) – According to the Maryland State Police a large pit bull that had reportedly chased a woman into her home was fatally wounded by a responding state trooper after it charged the trooper this afternoon in Cecil County.
At about 2:30 p.m. today, two troopers from the North East Barrack responded to the unit-block of Plum Shore Road, North East, Md., for the report of an aggressive dog on the loose. When troopers arrived, the complainant told them she was trying to get to her car from her home when the dog charged at her growling and barking. The woman fled to the safety of her home before the dog reached her. The dog was known in the neighborhood and troopers were shown the house where it belonged.
Troopers responded to the unfenced home and received no answer at the front door. They checked the rear of the home and found a sliding glass door standing open and damage around the wooden door frame. Troopers could hear a television on inside the home. Fearing a burglary may be underway, troopers checked the residence and found no one inside.
As they left the residence, the troopers saw a large pit bull across the street, matching the description they had previously been given. The dog took an aggressive stance and then ran directly toward both troopers. The dog stopped about five feet away and was growling and barking viciously. The dog then lunged toward one of the troopers. In fear for his safety, the trooper fired his State Police issued .40 caliber pistol, fatally wounding the dog and ending the threat.
Maryland State Police investigators responded to the scene to conduct an investigation. They interviewed multiple residents in the area who were familiar with the dog and said it was frequently loose in the neighborhood and was aggressive. Witnesses said the dog had charged toward them on previous occasions.
Cecil County Animal Control also responded to the scene. The investigation is continuing.
From The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals:
Are Pit Bulls Dangerous to People?
Despite the fact that pit bulls were bred to fight with each other, early breeders took pride in producing dogs that were trustworthy and friendly to people. Handlers bathed their opponent’s dog before a match, stood in the pits with the battling dogs and often pulled them apart to end a fight. Any dog who behaved aggressively toward a person was culled, or killed, to avoid passing on such an undesirable trait. Pit bulls typically lived in their owner’s homes, where they earned the nickname “nursemaid’s dog” because they were so reliable with young children. In fact, “Pete the Pup,” the children’s friend from the old TV series “Our Gang,” was a pit bull.
Why the Bad Rap?
Sadly, the pit bull has acquired a reputation as an unpredictable and dangerous menace. His intimidating appearance has made him attractive to people looking for a macho status symbol, and this popularity has encouraged unscrupulous breeders to produce puppies without maintaining the pit bull’s typical good nature with people. To make matters worse, irresponsible owners interested in presenting a tough image often encourage their pit bulls to behave aggressively. If a pit bull does bite, he’s far more likely to inflict serious injuries than most other breeds, simply because of his size and strength. A pit bull bite is also far more likely to draw media attention. Many dogs of other breeds bite people, but these incidents almost always go unreported. They’re just not exciting enough fodder for television and print.
Despite this bad rap, a well-bred, well-socialized and well-trained pit bull is one of the most delightful, intelligent and gentle dogs imaginable. It is truly a shame that the media continues to portray such a warped image of this beautiful, loyal and affectionate breed. Pit bulls once enjoyed a wonderful reputation. Some of the most famous dogs in American history were pit bulls. A pit bull named Stubby, a decorated hero during World War One, earned several medals and was even honored at the White House. During duty, he warned soldiers of gas attacks, found wounded men in need of help and listened for oncoming artillery rounds. Pit bulls have been featured in well-known advertising campaigns for companies such as Levis, Buster Brown Shoes and Wells Fargo. The image of a pit bull, which was considered a symbol of unflagging bravery and reliability, represented the United States on recruiting and propaganda posters during World War One. Many famous figures, including Helen Keller, President Theodore Roosevelt, General George Patton, President Woodrow Wilson, Fred Astaire and Humphrey Bogart, shared their lives and homes with pit bulls.
Modern pit bulls can still be ambassadors for their breed. Some are registered therapy dogs and spend time visiting hospitals and nursing homes. Some work in search-and-rescue. Tahoe, Cheyenne and Dakota, three search-and-rescue pit bulls from Sacramento, California, worked tirelessly at the World Trade Center during the aftermath of 9/11. Others, like Popsicle, an accomplished U.S. customs dog, work in narcotics and explosives detection. Still others serve as protection or sentry dogs for the police. The majority are cherished family members. Pit bulls become very attached to their people, and most love nothing better than cuddling on the couch or sleeping in bed with their pet parents (preferably under the covers)! ….MORE