Mom wants dog that attacked daughter put on 'dangerous' list

9-year-old girl bitten while riding bike in August

By Tarik Minor - Anchor, I-TEAM reporter, Christopher Yazbec

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The mother of a 9-year-old girl whose daughter was attacked by a pit bull in a Westside neighborhood in August wants the animal put on the county's dangerous dog list after more recent complaints have surfaced from neighbors.

Animal Control officers say the dog that bit the girl on the thigh has the potential to be a dangerous dog, but they haven't labeled the female pit pull that yet.

"Someone is going to get hurt or killed all because they said they aren't dangerous enough," said Terry Deese, the girl's mother. "But what's dangerous enough? They attacked my child."

The girl was riding her bike along a driveway when the pit bull attacked.

"There was a dog that came over the fence, attacked her and then jumped back over the fence," Deese said.

She said the dog's owners can't properly take care of all seven dogs on their property.

"The dogs have got out a lot and tried to attack other people, and they've attacked other dogs through their fence," Deese said.

Another neighbor across the street showed a picture of his hound dog's wounds after a recent run-in with the same female pit bull.

Animal Control officers sent the dog's owner Brenda Hickox a letter informing her that one of her animals has the propensity to be labeled a dangerous dog.

"Propensity is meant to put the dog owners on warning, to let them know if they don't do anything about the dangerous dog, if they fail to take action, it actually becomes a crime," said Scott Trebatoski, of Animal Care and Protective Services.

Hickox said she's taken the proper steps to contain the dogs, including installing an electric fence.

She said the only time the seven dogs even go out of the house is when she is present.

But that's not enough for Deese, who said she's just thankful the pit pull that tore into her daugher's leg let go.

"If she was smaller or a smaller child she could have been hurt or killed," Deese said.

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