Content warning: This story may be disturbing to some readers.
The Capital Regional District Animal Control is investigating a dog-on-dog attack in Saanich that left a greyhound badly injured and its owner with cuts and bruises.
The incident happened around 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 6, at Reynolds Park in Saanich, where Tatiana Gregoryanz was walking her three greyhounds, including her one-year-old neutered male, Misha, who fell victim to the unexpected attack.
“They were sniffing grass, and all of a sudden this silver dog jumps, I believe, from under the bush. I didn’t see the dog until he attached himself to my youngest one-year-old greyhound,” Gregoryanz told CHEK News Wednesday.
Saanich Police were called to the scene and a CRD spokesperson, Andy Orr, said in an emailed statement that the attacking dog was a pit bull. A CRD investigation is underway, and the dog “will probably be deemed dangerous,” according to Orr.
“The conclusion of the investigation could lead to (the) dog being put down,” he said. “We are satisfied the dog is currently under owner control.”
Gregoryanz recalls the moments leading to the attack and says she often brings her dogs to the park.
“I had walked the dogs there just after 6 p.m. There were people starting to play soccer, so we walked on the side, trying not to disturb the players. My dogs walk very slow because one of them is 13 and barely walks,” she said.
But when the pit bull appeared, Gregoryanz says it latched onto Misha and wouldn’t let go. And even after it did let go, it would latch on again.
“(The pit bull) grabbed him by the neck, and of course, my dog screamed. Everybody on the field ran to help, but the dog was very strong,” she recalled. “It took four or five people a very long time to separate them.”
‘I didn’t have time to feel anything’
That’s when Gregoryanz went into shock.
“When it was happening, I didn’t have time to feel anything,” she said. “I was in complete shock and was just trying to focus on getting my dogs away from that dog.”
Once freed, Misha was rushed to the vet.
“We brought him to the emergency vet, Central Veterinary Hospital. They have done emergency surgery. They were worried it wouldn’t be successful because the damage was so bad, but they have done an amazing job,” exclaimed Gregoryanz.
By Wednesday afternoon, she was given the OK to bring Misha home, but veterinarians urged her to keep an eye out for any health complications that may arise.
“Ideally, he won’t need further surgery. But he may,” she said.
Earlier this week, David Robertson launched a GoFundMe to raise funds for Misha. He says the dog was adopted by Gregoryanz just weeks ago, and the money raised will go toward vet costs.
More than $2,900 was raised by Wednesday afternoon.
Gregoryanz also injured
But Misha wasn’t the only one injured — Gregoryanz says she suffered small lacerations and bruises when trying to get the pit bull away from her dog.
“It was very painful. It still is,” said Gregoryanz, noting she went to the hospital for treatment and a tetanus shot after the incident. “But I’m thinking about my dog, who had his whole throat ripped. That must hurt a lot more.”
And while her dogs were leashed, she says the pit bull wasn’t. She says it didn’t have a collar, and its owner was nowhere to be found. She says this is a good reminder for dog owners to watch their dogs better.
“I always try to secure my dogs, and I assume that other dog owners do the same. I cannot imagine anyone doing this on purpose. I don’t know what happened there with the dog getting loose,” she said.
“It’s a horrible thing to happen. I think having a collar, even in the yard, is helpful. If they escape, it’s easier to grab onto them.”
Now Gregoryanz’s praising those who came to the rescue, saying people she knows and even those she doesn’t have been sending her well wishes.
“People around me were very helpful in holding my other dogs until I bring the car and bring my dog to the vet. Often in a shock situation, you feel alone,” she added.
“This time, I didn’t.”
A link to the GoFundMe is here.