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Kids Encouraged Dog to Attack Women

This isn’t your typical dog bite case. Not at all.
By Julia Lane, June 2009, Updated November 2021

This past Father’s Day in Seatac, Washington, witnesses saw four children aged 11 to 15 kicking Snaps, their male brindle pit bull. When a 63-year-old woman driving past stopped to help the dog, the 15-year-old girl told her to “mind her own business” then proceeded to pull her out of the car by her hair and hit her. One of the boys dragged Snaps over and encouraged his dog to bite her on the hands and thigh. A second good samaritan chased down the kids only to have them again encourage Snaps to attack. As they egged him on, he repeatedly bit the 41-year-old woman’s head, face and arms.

The kids were taken into police custody then released to their parents. Only the 15-year-old girl was charged with a felony assault charge. King County sheriff’s spokesman John Urquhart said the kids were deliberately hurting the dog to incite aggression. Where did they learn this kind of behavior? Surely, this wasn’t the first time the kids had abused Snaps. Where were their parents or other responsible adults?

Snaps was taken to local animal control and will likely be euthanized at the end of the week. Why is Snaps paying with his life after being abused and following the children’s orders? Where is the justice in that?

The whole situation is frightening and wrong. All four kids – and parents – should be held accountable for the abuse inflicted on their dog and the two women who tried to save him. What kind of abuse is going on in this family’s home? Why haven’t the kids been schooled in responsibility and compassion? Who will they hurt next if there are no serious repercussions for their actions?

Do you think Snaps should be killed? If not, what can be done to save his life and rehabilitate him?


Photo: iStock

Julia Lane owns Spot On K9 Sports, a training facility in the Chicago area, and offers online dog-sport coaching. She is the author of several travel books, and her byline has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Poets & Writers and elsewhere.