EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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August 27, 2013

Residents worry after two dogs attack retriever

ATKINSON — When Susan Hancox wants to walk her dog, she drives across the border to Haverhill, Mass.

“It’s too dangerous where I live,” Hancox said yesterday. “I’m scared to do so.”

Hancox is scared because of a pair of pit bulls that live right down the street from her home at 54 Walker Road. On Aug. 6, she said, the two dogs attacked Chase, a yellow Labrador retriever, being walked by its owner, Allison Bidgood.

“It was really horrible,” Bidgood said.

She said the veterinarian said Chase could have died, but his choke collar protected his neck.

Diane Hartmann, whose daughter Melissa owns the dogs, said neighbors don’t need to be worried.

“We’ve taken precautions and have taken them to obedience school,” Hartmann said at last week’s selectmen’s meeting. “These dogs are in a fenced-in yard and they are on a leash.”

At the meeting, Hartmann said her daughter and her dogs are living with them temporarily at 39 Walker Road.

Hancox said she first knew something was wrong when she heard her dog barking.

“I could tell by the way she was barking that something was wrong,” she said. “I went to my door and saw the two dogs running loose in the street.”

She said the dogs first went up to her front door and started jumping at the glass to get to her dog, but then they saw Bidgood walking Chase down the street.

“There were a couple of joggers running by us and I thought they were theirs, but they made it clear that it wasn’t,” Bidgood said. “They started smelling each other and then within seconds, the dogs attacked him.”

Bidgood said the dogs started to bite and rip at Chase. Soon after, neighbors came in to try to get the dogs off Chase.

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