“Experts have established that due to the gravity of the wounds, at least 10 dogs were involved in each attack,” Mexico City prosecutors said in a statement.
Authorities have begun rounding up dogs living in the park to conduct tests aimed at determining if they were involved in the attacks.
In one case, the Associated Press reports, a teenage girl called her sister with her cellphone to plead for help as the attack took place.
“Several dogs are attacking us, help me!” the girl screamed before the call was disconnected.
Despite that, some animal activists are questioning whether the deaths should all be blamed solely on wild dogs, and Diana Ruiz, who received the phone call, still doesn’t believe dogs were responsible for her sister’s death.
“What kind of dog can tear the skin from your whole arm and leave just bone and if it was an attack dog why didn’t it attack her neck?” Ruiz told Milenio Television. “What’s most shocking is that one of her breasts was mutilated.”
“There needs to be a thorough investigation,” she added.
The attacks occured in the Cerro de la Estrella, a hilltop park surrounded by the city’s Iztapalapa district.
The first two bodies — a 26-year-old woman and a 1-year-old child — were found there Dec. 29, authorities in Mexico’s capital said.
The woman, Shunashi Mendoza, was missing her left arm, and prosecutors said that both she and the boy had bled to death and been partially eaten.
On Friday, visitors to the park found the bodies of Alejandra Ruiz, 15, and her boyfriend Samuel Martinez, 16. Both had bled to death.
“It’s not the behavior of street dogs to kill humans,” said Maya, adding that blaming street dogs for the deaths could make life difficult for the thousands of homeless dogs in the city.
“A lot of people get tired of their dogs and they simply throw them on the streets,” he said. “This is going to create a terrible hate for street dogs and that’s going to lead to even more abuse.”
It’s estimated that, in the city of 9 million people, the number of dogs range from 1.2 million to 3 million.
Mexico City Public Safety Secretary Jesus Rodriguez told Milenio Television that the four victims were not dumped in the area as some had suggested. He said all the bodies had bite wounds, and that the bites were inflicted both while they were alive and after they had died. He warned against visiting the park.
According to Maya, the trapped dogs included beagles, Maltese and poodles and most were probably abandoned pets or their offspring.
Experts will test the dogs’ hair for traces of human blood and also test their stomach contents. Authorities haven’t said what they plan to do with the dogs.
Previous attacks by feral dogs have occured in Mexico City’s famed Chapultepec Park, but none fatal. After one attack there, authorities rounded up dogs, spayed and neutered them, and then either returned them to the park or found them homes.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 8th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abandoned, Alejandra Ruiz, animals, Antemio Maya, bitten, blood, Cerro de la Estrella, child, contents, deaths, dogs, feral, homeless, Iztapalapa, killed, mauled, mexico, mexico city, park, pets, roundup, Samuel Martinez, Shunashi Mendoza, stomach, street, Street Dog Protection Association, street dogs, teenagers, tests, wild
Effective Sunday, in the city that recently sent hired hands to round up strays, dead or alive, homeowners in single family residences are allowed to legally keep three dogs; while apartment renters are limited to two.
And in an effort to crack down on the thousands of local residents who don’t register their dogs, the city has also worked out an arrangement with veterinarians, authorizing them to issue city licenses when pet owners bring their dogs in for vaccinations. That takes effect Jan. 1.
The measures are designed to make the rules in Fayetteville the same as they are in surrounding Cumberland County, the Fayetteville Observer reports.
Dr. John Lauby, director of Cumberland County Animal Control, which also handles animal control for the city, said his department doesn’t plan to go door to door counting dogs, but it will respond to complaints from citizens about residents harboring too many dogs.
There are no cats limits in Fayetteville, or Cumberland County.
Officials hope the more stringent rules will cut down on complaints involving barking and loose dogs, as well as unsanitary yards where dogs are kept.
Fayetteville residents who previously had more than three dogs can keep them, assuming they are up to date on on the pet fees they pay on their property tax bills.
The county has about 39,000 licensed dogs and cats and, it estimates, about 30,000 non-registered ones.
The county is sending letters to those scofflaws, he said.
“We want to be proactive in preventing the spread of rabies from the wild animal population to humans,” he said.
The license fee is $7 per dog or cat if it has been spayed or neutered; $25 if not.
Those discovered illegally harboring more than the allowable number of pets will be fined $100 for a first offense and given a “reasonable amount of time” to find new homes for the excess dogs.
Posted by jwoestendiek July 3rd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal control, animals, apartments, complaints, cumberland county, dog, dog limit, dog limits, dogs, enforcement, fayetteville, fines, household, john lauby, licenses, licensing, limit, limits, north carolina, number, pets, registered, registration, roundup, strays, three dogs, two dogs