A woman is in the hospital after being attacked by two pit bulls Sunday morning at the corner of Teton Avenue and Grant Street in American Falls.
Police said Nancy Davis, 61, of American Falls, saw her dog being attacked by pit bulls, and after she broke up the fight, became the victim.
Dale Davis, Nancy's ex-husband, said she saw her dog, Roxy, being attacked from her window. She went out and broke up the fight, and the dogs ran away.
"This, evidently, to my understanding, has happened before and she always went and knocked on the door, and the people came out and got the dogs back in the fence,” said Dale.
Nancy started to go to her neighbor's house to tell them about the dogs, but didn't make it past the edge of her driveway before the dogs attacked her.
Some neighbors heard Nancy scream. They ran out and fended off the canines with sticks and brooms, but Nancy was already on the ground.
"(The pit bulls) ripped part of her scalp off, the back of her head, right below the eye, took a couple, three chunks of arm out of her arm right here where the elbow's at, and ate part of her ear off,” said Dale.
Nancy was taken to Portneuf Medical Center and the pit bulls were brought to Pocatello Animal Shelter, where they were euthanized.
“In this case, the owners did the right thing, as far as they just let the dogs go,” said Mary Remer, animal services director.
Remer, who has a pit bull in the shelter, said there are ways to curve behavior problems with your dogs. She says to get them spayed or neutered at 6 months or younger, keep them current on rabies vaccinations, and get them into obedience training and socialized.
Dale, whose daughter was also attacked by a pit bull, said people need to be careful with big dogs.
“Once you chain a dog up, no matter how friendly it is, it's going to turn mad,” he said.
American Falls doesn't have a breed-specific ordinance pertaining to pit bulls or specific dogs. It does have a vicious dog ordinance, and whether an incident falls under that ordinance has to be determined by an officer. Police consider things such as whether it was provoked or unprovoked attack.
Hannah Christiansen, the pit bull owner, was charged with four misdemeanors – two counts of dog attacking a person and two counts of dogs at large.