Houston woman's dog attacked by stray pit bull through her fence

- A Houston woman's dog was attacked by a pit bull while fenced in her own yard, but she says she was shocked at what happened when she tried to report it to animal control.

It was a routine Saturday morning at Joy Sewing's Third Ward home.  Her two boxers were stretching their legs in the fenced-in backyard but then the dogs started barking.

”It escalated to a point where it was almost like screaming and my iron gate was rattling very violently.  I ran outside.  There was a pit bull that had pulled by dog's leg through the gate and was pulling on it.  There was blood everywhere and my dog, Prince, was screaming,”  Sewing, the Fashion and Beauty Editor for the Houston Chronicle, was bitten by her dog as she tried prying him from the pit bull.

”He got scared and he bit me," Sewing said.

Ultimately, Prince had a $1,000 emergency surgery, saving the dog Sewing rescued three years ago when he was severely malnourished.  "Every bone in his body you could see," Sewing said.

Both Sewing and Prince are now bandaged and scarred in several ways. 

"He has had sleepless nights and painful nights,” Sewing said.

Sewing also says she was shocked when she called animal control immediately after the attack, attempting to get the dogs picked up before they struck again.  "The woman on the phone said if I wanted to file a formal complaint, if they came to pick up the pit bulls they would quarantine my dog and charge me fines.  I have since talked with the head over at BARC and that's not happening,” says Sewing.   
 
Houston Animal Control is now attempting to find the pit bulls.
 
”There's so many dogs that are stray or people don't take care of them. It has become a city wide problem," Sewing said.

A problem indeed.  Houston Animal Control says it receives 55,000 calls a year and has 30 animal control officers.  Due to its small staff, BARC prioritizes replying to calls about stray dogs. Responding to a call of a dog on school grounds is priority number one, followed by an aggressive dog putting a human in danger.  An animal control officer may not be able to get to a stray dog that is simply walking in a neighbor unless there are several calls, sometimes for several days.  If you need to report a stray, call 311.

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