Owners in custody after unleashed dogs maul 2-year-old toddler
Two dog owners are now in police custody following a horrifying attack by their unleashed Rottweiler and Labrador on a 2-year-old girl in Sichuan Province.
The brutal incident, caught on video, occurred at 8 am on Monday, leaving the toddler with severe injuries, including a ruptured kidney and multiple skin wounds.
The white Labrador's owner, Jia, was apprehended by 9pm, while the Rottweiler's owner, Tang, was taken into custody at 3am on Tuesday. Police investigations are ongoing.
The injured toddler was swiftly transferred to West China Hospital at 11 pm on Monday for urgent medical treatment.
Medical experts, led by Dr Zhu Yuchun, an associate chief physician at the hospital, assessed the situation.
They determined that the primary concern was the damage to the girl's right kidney and resulting hematoma. Considering the high risk of losing the kidney through surgery, conservative treatment was deemed the best option.
In recent years, incidents of dog attacks by aggressive or banned dog breeds have occurred frequently. Similar cases have been reported in Guangzhou, Shanghai, Nanchang, and other places, with the Rottweiler breed being a frequent culprit.
This incident has reignited the debate on whether aggressive dog breeds like Rottweilers should be included in banned lists across cities.
Experts note that Rottweilers, known for their high alertness and strong aggression, often require professional training and management.
While some cities prohibit individual or family breeding of Rottweilers, Chongzhou, where the incident occurred, does not have the breed on its banned list.
Netizens have also raised concerns about the lack of safety awareness and legal consciousness among dog owners.
China's Civil Code holds breeders and managers liable for harm caused by banned aggressive dogs. Local regulations require all dog owners, even those with non-banned breeds, to leash or confine their pets. Failure to do so results in legal consequences.
Legal consequences typically stop at civil damages in cases of dog attacks. Criminal liability is invoked only in severe incidents leading to significant injury or death, where breeders or managers can be charged with "endangering public safety by dangerous methods."
In reality, many individuals knowingly flout the law by breeding aggressive dogs. On various e-commerce platforms, a simple search using keywords like "Rottweiler" or "aggressive dog" reveals numerous ads selling these dogs. Prices range from a few hundred yuan to thousands of yuan, indicating a thriving and concerning market for these breeds.
Lawyer Huang Rongnan, in an interview with Shanghai Television, emphasized that the unleashed, aggressive dog should be confiscated by the public security department.
The dog owners are expected to face civil and criminal responsibilities for their negligence.
If evidence surfaces that the property management failed to supervise the unleashed dogs adequately, they too will be held jointly responsible.