By ALICE DeSANTO
Last October, the OBSERVER featured a front-page story about a small chihuahua-mixed dog who had been attacked by a much larger pitbull in the city of Dunkirk. The story featured a rather large picture on the middle of it's front page of the injured dog with her tummy wrapped with gauze and bandages.
The little dog was our dog, Megan. Megan weighs only 4 pounds and I believe the dog that attached her was probably four to five times larger than Meggie (as we call her.) Meggie is actually a Maltese, Chihuahua, Poodle-mix, a Malti-poo-huahua so to speak. She is adorable, and cute and such a show off. We love her very much. She is however, a "princess." She thinks she is because she is now famous, that is.
Meggie is recovering from the attack last fall.
My husband and I love her as a daughter, as I am sure most animal lovers love their pets. My husband and I love all animals and I'm sure the owner of the pit bull loves his pet as a member of his household, as well.
On the day Meggie was attacked, she was being taken for a walk around the block surrounding Dunkirk Middle School by my husband Dominick. Meg loves her walks, and at times, because she is a "princess," you may see us walking her around the block in a very tiny dress, especially on Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and other holidays. She tends to prance around and wiggles her butt back and forth because she knows she is cute.
She is quite tiny, though and some of the larger dogs in the neighborhood seem to think Meggie is something related to a squirrel (like the little, gray, red or black ones) in our community, and not the people-type squirrels that are all over the place. Meg, herself actually doesn't want squirrels in our yard and she puts a fuss over them.
On the day of the attack, my husband was walking Meggie with her leash on, as usual, when the larger dog bolted out of the front door of the home. He moved so fast toward Meggie that my husband couldn't rein her fast enough to avoid the confrontation. The pit bull grabbed Meggie around her middle area like a small rag doll. He shook her violently many times. Neighbors and friends ran from their homes, as well as some very kind strangers who stopped their cars to run and assist Meg and my husband during the attack.
Some of the people were trying to pull Meg out of the attacker's mouth, but each time they got her away, the dog would bite her back.
At one point, my husband secured Meggie in his arms only to be knocked down to the ground by the large dog, and was then bitten and scratched on his arms and hands until he let her go. Finally, someone was able to distract the dog and some young teenage girls from the area who were standing nearby, ran over and grabbed Meg and secured her further away from the attacker.
A very nice stranger asked my husband if he needed a ride to the vet's and he agreed. He stopped only at our house for five seconds to tell me what had happened. My husband was severely shaken.
By the way, we had just learned that my husband, who has ongoing heart problems and a pacemaker with a defibrillator, also now has an aneurism in his heart, as well. His state of fright really was upsetting to me. I was scared for him and for Meggie.
I am very happy to say that my husband and Meggie are both doing quite well now. Meg substained broken ribs, and a punctured lung, and on one side of her ribs, air was seeping into the area between her skin and her lung, from which there was no hole for the air to escape. She had several bite marks and had to have some stitches.
The staff at Dunkirk Animal Clinic were wonderful, but her injuries were too extensive for them to treat in their clinic. They sedated Meg and had us drive her immediately to the Orchard Park Animal Hospital for treatment of her injuries where she was an in-patient for four days.
Being a little "princess," as I have said she thinks she is; Meggie has asked me to write to thank all of the people who were so kind to her in her hour of need. She asked me especially to mention the twin little girls on Eagle Street, who have practically grown up with Meg, who stopped in with their daddy with a wonderful drawing for Meg when she returned home from the hospital.
The twins are two of the many children who love to see her flirt/flit around the block in her little dresses and pet her when she passes on her walks. We would also like to thank the gentleman who stopped to give Meg and Dom a ride to the Vet's so quickly on the day of the attack. Thanks also to Skeeter on the corner of Fifth and Swan who helped out and to the young ladies who secured her away from her attacker. Thank you also to Melissa, Meg's groomer, and her friend who stopped in with home-made doggie treats for Meggie and her brother Greggie (McGreghor.) We don't know some of your names, but nonetheless, we love you and thank you for your help and kindness during this troubling attack.
Meg loves to kiss and she asked me to mention to stop in anytime and she'd show you herself how much she appreciates you. God bless you all. It's sad we never heard from the owner of the pit bull.
Alice DeSanto wrote this letter on behalf of her husband, Dom, and her Princess Meggie and Greggie, too. She is a Dunkirk resident.