Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way.

5-Year Old Dies Following Attack by Chained Dogs

Written by PETA | January 9, 2009
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Chained dog

A 5-year-old girl in Thomasville, Georgia, has died of her injuries after she was reportedly attacked by her family’s pit bulls while she was playing on a trampoline.

Carol Jones, the executive director of the Thomas County Humane Society, missed the point when she responded to this attack by telling people to “be cautious of their family pets. They can turn on you at any time, and it doesn’t matter what kind of dog.” It’s ridiculous to suggest that people be constantly suspicious of Fido when the real reason for this tragedy can be found elsewhere in the article—the part where it says the dogs attacked the child when they “broke free of their chains.”

Leaving dogs chained outside creates a risk of injury for children or anyone else who might wander into the yard. Chained dogs kill more children than do fireworks accidents and falls from trees and playground equipment combined, according to a 2002 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dogs who spend a lot of time alone or chained are more prone to become aggressive and bite, while dogs who are socialized and enjoy life with their human “pack” are generally protective of their guardians without being a danger to the community.

January is “Unchain a Dog” month. Chained dogs everywhere experience stress and confinement that put them in danger of going mad and attacking someone, and many dogs suffer and die every year during winter’s bitter cold and summer’s blistering heat. Please make a promise to all dogs who are trapped at the end of a chain in your neighborhood that you will do something—anything—to help them.

Written by Jeff Mackey

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  • Nicole says:

    my father in law lives next to a woman who has 2 pitt bulls. They have a pretty new wooden fance that is about 56 feet tall. They had their dogs out in the backyard one day and one of them heard the postman across the street delivering mail. Well the dog ended up breaking down the fence and mauling the poor postman. Is it just the breed because this dog was not chained up.

  • Jennifer Malone says:

    I have a pitbull and 3 kids. Yes I do monoter the dog and his behavior. You are suppose to so u can teach the pit for any wrong doing. I will tell u he loves my kids to death. He gets mad at me when I scold the kids or give them lectures. You need to teach and be patient. That girl jumping on the trampoline and got attacked was sad. The dog probably wanted attention and instead was leashed up. The owners need to be charged with neglect. n3glect from watching there child and her saftey. ALso neglect and animal cruilty. I worked with all types of dogs and u know what I got bitten more times from a lab and a shitzu and zero times from a pitbull. Pitbulls are nanny dogs tthey are out to please there owners. Treat them right.

  • Hayley says:

    Donna Barham I totally admire what you do and I feel that you did all that you could with the stray pit bull and that you needed to protect your other animals. Kurt and Antigone please exchange phone numbers. I personally see all animals as equal to humans. They are inhabiting earth just as we are should they be downgraded because they are not as intelligent as us? I find it truly discusting that wenot all but a lot of us deliberatly breed them to make money raise them irresponsibly and treat them with little respect. Animals give love unconditionally and dont ask much. I love animals and have alot of admiration for them. I think a lot of humans are selfish and greedy and have forgotten what really matters in life. Well I wonder what the personality of a child would be like if it was chained outside with a kennel for the majority of its life. Go figure. Overall I believe dogs should not be chained no matter what breed at homes or on utes with long chainswhere they are at risk of hanging themselves. Yes it should be illegal.

  • Kurt K says:

    Antigone you actually make a good point by comparing a beaten wife to an abused dog. They may seem the same but there are a few key differences. Just to be clear I never said the parents are totally innocent in this matter. They should have known better than to let their child near a dangerous dog. Especially by herself. Back to my point. In regards to a beaten wife of course she has to bear some blame it she kills her husband. Though I’m sure a jury would consider the abuse in the deliberation. The only time I will condone that type of killing is if her life was in immediate danger. Here is the key difference as I see it. A woman that kills her husband knows killing is wrong and she more than likely isn’t a danger to other people and can be rehabilitated. However a dog that kills doesn’t know what it did was wrong and it has a high probability of repeating over and over. That is why the dog must be put down to protect unsuspecting people. Like the lady above said one minute they can seem harmless and the next they can be tearing into a person or animal. This is an unfortunate case but the authorities have to protect the public from future attacks like this.

  • mary says:

    Why have animals?? If your going to keep them chained up..Do you really think they feel love with very little interaction from humans?? To raise a healthy and gentle animal you must spend time with it as you would a human.We are the ones who create such aggressive animals.Its always very sad to hear such sad stories..

  • Antigone1000 says:

    Kurt K By your logic the abused woman who finally kills her husband should be fully prosecuted without regard to circumstances. The fact is that the people are to blame they caused the dog to be chained and to go mad. The animal is not to blame. Unfortunately any moron in this country can have an animal and a child. In this case the morons’ animal killed their child. Unfortunate but their fault.

  • Donna Barham says:

    I am 47 yrs. old and have picked up stray and abondoned animals all my life. I have had all breeds of dogs including a pit and an Americal Bulldog. About a month ago however I picked up a pit mix off the median of an interstate. HE was glad to be rescued. He was well behaved walked on a leash and did not run off when I let him out of the van to go to the bathroom. He was gruffy looking and thin so I took him home. I put him in a pen to get used to my pack of 8 dogs but he climbed the fence and they got along for about 2 weeks when all of the sudden he got pushed in a playful situation he exploded and attacked my 100 lb. malamute shredding his leg to the bone. I put him on the chain for about a week but he behaved himself so I let him off and he was o.k. for a couple of days and them my American bulldog pup started playing with him and they stated tusseling and all of a sudden he attacked him and bit him all over and it took me pulling and my daugter to pull him off He never offered to bite us. He was again but on the chain and let off a week later for good behavior. He had never offered to bother the cats while in the house but one jumped off the counter and it was like a switch went off. He grabbed her and shook her back and forth until I got him unattached. I decided I may have to take him to the pound but I told myself I would try a couple more days to find him a home so I put him back on the chain. The very next day after the rain he lunged and pulled the whole chain out of the ground to get back after the malamute but I caught him before he hurt him and them moved him to another location. The very next day he broke his collar and attacked the bull dog again and he did not provoke him one bit because he doesn’t know how to fight and it took me pulling and my daughter with a shovel tring to pry his teeth off Bruno’s neck and then he finally let go and I got him in the van. He was never aggressive towards people and very loving and well behaved it was just the animals that triggered the aggression. I don’t know his background but he may have been fought in the past. I hated to take him to the shelter but I did to keep my animals safe. He is the first dog in all these years that I had to take to a shelter. He could have been free to run with my pack on 13 acres of wooded land but he just had a trigger point probably caused from his upbringing. I love all animals and foster wild animals when needed also. I hate for anything to happen to any of the ones I bring home because they are all unique and all appreciated the love and food they get even if they have had bad pasts.

  • Kurt K says:

    Lisa So you are saying that pitbulls are naturally protective of their owners? Wouldn’t that make them a dangerous breed then? I was bit in the face by a German Sheapard once becuase I approached its owner while he was petting the dog. Is it safe to say pitbulls have a higher chance of this happening since they are so protective? Therefore to protect innocent bystanders from being attacked shouldn’t pitbulls be caged or chained up when the owners can’t watch the dogs? If you let them roam the yard they may miscontrue a mailman delivery person doortodoor salesman neighbors childetc. as a threat and attack. I don’t like it either but some pitbulls need to chained up especially when children are around.

  • lisa says:

    pitbulls were not originally bred to be fighting dogs. During the 40′s and 50′s it was the 1 family dog in America. Remember “Little Rascals”? It wasn’t until dog fighting was introduced by other countries that they became known as fighting dogs. Before this they were valued because they protected their family so much.

  • Joanna says:

    I bet that the owner beat to death the poor dog. It went mad being chained and all the time on its own. The owner should be prosecuted and also the City. PETA should also fight for a Law that will forbid chaining dogs and dog fighting.

  • Shannon says:

    Peta has been the best thing that could have ever happened for animals. I love what they do for animals and how much they care. Thank you Peta.

  • Shannon says:

    Some people have no heart or warmth. I don’t blame the dog. Dogs will act how they are raised and treated. Enough said. Anyone or thing would go mad after being changed everday. Dogs were meant to get some exercise. If you can’t treat a dog how it should be treated. Please Please do not own one. Where were the parents??

  • Michelle says:

    This is very sad and bothers me a lot. I do not understand why people get dogs if they are only going to leave them outside on a chain. I do not know how in these freezing cold months the owner do not feel guilty looking out there window from their warm house and seeing the poor dog out there with frozen water and no way to be warm. I think how crazy they must go with nothing different day to day. Is there any way this can become a law against leaving a dog outside chained? If so I would love to help in any way.

  • Diane Thompson says:

    I would agree that this is NOT the animal’s fault but the owner of the animal’s ignorance! Pets are just that…Pets! They rely on us humans for shelter food and love. Yes LOVE! they deserve to have attention and play times etc. Nobody should get a pet if they are going to leave them “chained” outside or in a kennel 50 ft from a house and alone without any socialization. that is cruel! At least at shelters they have more attention and socialize with other dogs near them! they no longer have the lonliness that they have chained up or locked up all ALONE! People need to educate themselves before making lifetime committments! And Rescued dogs and cats make the best pets because they are so appreciative of their new homes and LOVE! they flourish in the attention and return it 10fold! Adopt Adopt Adopt. Put these puppy mills out of business! That’s nothing but animal cruelty! and it HAS TO STOP!

  • Pamela says:

    I just want to say that it is sad the little girl is dead but it is true animals chained not socialized will be aggressive. It dosent matter if it is a pitbull or lab or sheppard and to note pitbulls past their temperment tests higher then a collie a cockerspaniel and a lab so figure that out people who are quick to judge the animal cause it is a pitbull. I think we people need to take responsibility for our actions not pass the blame cause we can speak. Shame on the peopele who do that. Hold us accountable for the wrongs we do to the animal kingdom.

  • Kurt K says:

    Antigone Do you know for a fact that this animal was chained for its entire life? Have you ever thought that maybe the animal was chained up because it was dangerous when it wasn’t chained? How am I a bigot for blaming the dog for something it did? By your logic we can’t blame any criminals then. Everything comes either from the parents or some other outside influence. Nobody has to take responsibility for their actions. By your logic Michael Vick isn’t to blame his parents are.

  • Stella says:

    When we neglect our responsibilities there is bound to be consequences.People domesticated dogs therefore it is our responsibility to take care of them. The parents are to blame for this not the dogs.

  • Antigone1000 says:

    Kurt K An animal that is chained for his entire life goes mad do you not get that?? An animal kept in a cage in a lab for his entire life also goes mad. The exact same thing will happen to a human. No the dogs are not to blame the humans are. As usual your bigotry surfaces.

  • Kurt K says:

    Antigone Well the pool wouldn’t lunge at the girl and drag her into the deep end. They can’t do that because they are nonliving objects. However the dog had a choice in the matter now didn’t it. A Don’t kill the little girl. Or B Kill the little girl. You are the ones that keep telling me animals have feelings and emotions. That they deserve rights. Well with rights comes responsibilities and consequences. The dog choose to kill and the dog is to blame.

  • john says:

    stacey its not just the parents fault its also the people who bred pitbulls because they were bred to be vicious and be guard dogs even though some are nice and your remark shows no human endeverment

  • Antigone1000 says:

    Kurt K Actually my original comment was that the incident was 100 the fault of the humans not the dog. Even if my child had been the one killed I would still feel exactly the same. If my child drowned in an unfenced pool why would I blame the pool??

  • Kurt K says:

    Antigone I wasn’t questioning the way you house your dogs guns pool etc. I suggested that if this happened to somebody in your family now follow me here you might feel a bit different about the animal in question. Hypothetically speaking lets just say you have a 8 year old niece and she goes to a friends house who owns a pit bull and that dog attacks and kills your niece. As much as it pains you to think this you will probably hate that animal. You can hate the owners too that is your right. But I doubt you would want to be buddy buddy with the dog. For the record I would never chain my dog up either. I would however put them in a dog pin at night just so they didn’t get into any trouble. But I would not chain them up unless we went somewhere and it was necessary for a little while. So on that point I agree with you. But you can’t honestly expect me to believe that there are no dangerous animals that were not created by humans. Thats just silly.

  • Antigone1000 says:

    Kurt K Since I am smart enough not to keep a dog chained for hisher entire life with little or no social contact my dog would not attack a family member so I would not find myself in that predicament. I am also smart enough to know that I need to have a fence around my pool and that I need to keep my guns safely away from my children. Sadly enough many people are not that intelligent. Perhaps we should start issuing breeding licenses for humans…

  • LabLover says:

    So first off I love dogs I have a wonderful black lab and shes amazing. I want to say that I had a feeling this was gonna be another pitbull story. For starters… why was a small child on a trampoline alone surrounded by dogs who would think she was a small tasty play toy? Pitbulls ARE DANGEROUS!! Pitbulls and Children DONT MIX! As far as them being chained up I don’t think any dog should be chained up..but they do need a yard to call their own…with a fence.