Dog attack has Cape Coral neighborhood living in fear

Christy Dimond

Photo: Video by fox4now.com

Dog attack has Cape Coral neighborhood living in fear

CREATED Aug. 23, 2013

CAPE CORAL, Fla. - A gruesome attack by two dogs on another has one Cape Coral neighborhood pleading for help.  Neighbors say they're so afraid of the two dogs, they don't want to leave their homes. 

The attack left Coach, a greyhound dog, with life-threatening injuries.  
 
"I was turned around and next thing I knew there were two dogs on him just biting him everywhere," said Judy Seravello, Coach's owner.
 
It's been 32 days since the attack and Coach is about to undergo his third surgery.  His vet at East West Veterinary Care Center in Cape Coral said Coach will recover.  Neighbors, though, are having a hard time recovering. 
 
"We should be able to walk in our own neighborhood without being terrorized and without the threat of dogs coming out to attack," said Jill Latimer. 
 
Neighbors said the two dogs who attacked Coach still run around the neighborhood without leashes.  Latimer said they've called Lee County Domestic Animal Services to report the dogs, but are told they need to take pictures of the dogs running around unleashed as proof, or have an animal control officer witness the dogs without leashes.  
 
Latimer said she has a hard time getting pictures because the dogs are often out during the dark.  She, and others, said they are nervous to go outside with the threat of the dogs being unleashed. 
 
Donna Ward, Director of Lee County Domestic Animal Services, said cases like this are the reason she is trying to get the county ordinance changed.  Currently, a dog can only be removed from its home if it's deemed "dangerous," which requires it to have attacked more than one animal or one human. Ward is hoping to add a clause for "vicious" dogs, which would allow professionals to remove a dog from a home after just one animal attack, depending on the severity. 
 
"Some first attacks are pretty horrific and you want to prevent future attacks," Ward said. 
 
Ward was scheduled to introduce the "vicious" ordinance to Lee County Board of Commissioners on August 13th, but the meeting was canceled.  She wasn't sure when it would be rescheduled. 
 
The owner of the two dogs who attacked Coach faces 1,100 dollars in fines.  Seravello has already paid more than 10,000 dollars in medical bills for Coach.
 

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