Mom recounts terrifying moments as dogs maul family pet


BUNKER HILL, Ind. –Suzette Daine says she’s never felt so helpless.

Her son alone upstairs, she’s sheltered in a basement, as dogs attacked her family pet right in her dining room.

Daine was in the yard of her Bunker Hill home, “tidying up,” she said.

Then she heard it.

“They ran right through the screen door,” Suzette said, referring to two wandering dogs that broke into her house.

Pitbull and mastiff mixed breeds, police say, ran right for her dog, “Bella,” mauling her neck.

“I knew that I had to get out of there,” said Suzette. “It terrified me.”

She reached the basement through the outside.

“Just horrible, horrible noise. I could hear my cat. I thought they had my cat,” she recalled.

Grabbing the broom, she hit the steps to warn her teenaged son, who she thought was in the shower, but ran right into one of the attacking dogs on the steps.

“I never felt so helpless,” she said. “As a mother, I wanted to get back upstairs, but if I got in the middle of that, I might not make it to get to my son. I was praying.”

She hid in the bathroom and called  911. Her son was hiding and calling, too.

“He did not know what happened to me in that period,” she said. “So he was terrified.”

The attackers left, found later by Miami County animal control. They were returned to their owner with no charges filed – the dogs escaped accidentally.

“I think they should’ve been put down,” said Suzette, an animal lover. “They were vicious. If that had been a child, God knows what could’ve happened.”

Bella is recovering after 18 stitches. The cat was not hurt. Investigators did find the attacking dogs had not had their rabies vaccines. Also, it turns out the two roving dogs walked over three miles before reaching the victim’s house.

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  1. Is this ordinance not applicable? — § 90.18 VICIOUS ANIMALS …For the purpose of this subchapter, a dog may be declared vicious and humanely destroyed by an authorized agent if the following facts or criteria are met… Has caused injuries creating a potential danger to the health and life of the victim or constitutes an immediate and serious threat of harm to human beings or other animals…