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Bulldog survives attack by wild animal

Posted: August 20, 2008 9:45 p.m.
Updated: October 22, 2008 5:02 a.m.

Rodney Powers, left, and Christina Powers, stand outside their Canyon Country home recounting their dog Diesel's morning. Diesel, an English bulldog, was attacked by a wild animal Wednesday morning.

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The Powers family doesn’t know what attacked their dog Diesel. They are happy just to see Diesel alive after the pooch was reportedly mauled by a wild animal, possibly a bobcat.

Diesel is an 80-pound English bulldog that splits his time between the air-conditioned house and pool side on the Powers’ patio at their Canyon Country home. On Tuesday night, Diesel never bothered to come inside, Rodney Powers said. He tried to let the dog in before leaving to work the graveyard shift at Ralph’s, but Diesel refused.

Sometime between Rodney leaving at 1 a.m. and 11 a.m. Wednesday, Diesel was attacked by a wild animal.

Rodney’s wife, Christina Powers, found the dog. She was home from her first shift at Mitchell Elementary School, when she found Diesel lying in a puddle of blood. Christina rushed the dog inside to the bathroom tub and washed off the blood. She said she screamed after seeing how much blood he’d lost.

Diesel was taken to Sweetwater Veterinarian Clinic in Agua Dulce.

“The doctor ruled out another dog,” Rodney said. It was probably a bobcat, he added. The veterinarian ruled out a mountain lion because the dog would not have survived.

Diesel spent much of the afternoon in surgery. The wounds on his hindquarters were patched and Diesel is recovering. However, the dog won’t be a father. Diesel lost one testicle in the attack and the other was removed during surgery, Rodney said.

This is the sixth attack on a pet in the neighborhood, Christina said. Rodney and she are members of the No Mercy Neighborhood Watch group, which is trying to bring awareness to wild animal attacks.

Christina said she contacted the California Department of Fish and Game and that agency told her the animal that attacked Diesel would not be moved to another area, but might be put down if it is found.

Christina shrugged her shoulders and said putting down the animal might be necessary to save other pets or children.

The couple’s poodle, Mary Jane, has been missing for days.

Rodney believes a bobcat probably snatched the small dog.

Rodney said the animal that attacked Diesel was probably walking along an easement that extends along the backs of the homes on their street. It wouldn’t be hard to get over the back fence or the brick walls along the sides of the backyard, he added. Rodney blames the fall 2007 wildfires for pushing wild animals to residential areas.

Christina said development is also a likely culprit.

“Look at all the homes. The animals don’t have anywhere to go,” she said.

Diesel didn’t look concerned about development or fires after his surgery. The dog panted heavily, a side effect of the morphine given as a painkiller.

“We’ll keep him inside now,” Rodney said.

Rodney’s eyes hung heavy after working the night-shift and spending much of his day making sure the family’s best friend made it through.

“We are just happy he made it,” Rodney said.

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