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County workers hunt for pit bulls

Woman says animals attacked her horse; animal is recovering

Posted: August 11, 2014 6:12 p.m.
Updated: August 11, 2014 6:12 p.m.

Worried the dogs might chase and attack again, county animal control officers scoured the Santa Clara River wash Monday searching for a pair of pit bulls, a spokeswoman said.

A woman and her daughter were attacked by the dogs while horseback riding in the wash Friday in Canyon Country, said Betsy Webster, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control.

One horse, named R.O., suffered bites to its abdomen and to the back of its legs, Webster said. The mother, daughter and second horse were not injured.

“We are out driving around the area looking for the dogs,” Webster said Monday, identifying a search area in and near the wash, including a stretch in Canyon Country from the northern end of Honby Avenue to the western end of Santa Clara Street roughly paralleling Soledad Canyon Road.

“We have great concerns about ‘prey drive’ because of the way the dogs attacked,” she said, describing “prey drive” a dog’s drive to hunt and kill prey.

“When we see that kind of behavior, that’s what concerns us. Our concern is: ‘Who else would they chase?’” she said.

“One of the dogs bit a horse on its side, breaking the skin and causing an injury to its abdomen,” Webster said. “So if these dogs are chasing prey, that seems to be a prey drive.”

She said she believes the dogs are licensed and is confident she and her staff will locate the owner and dogs.

“An unknown woman was with the dogs and she refused to give any information; that’s why we think they’re owned and possibly licensed,” she said.

Staffers at animal control poured through their database of licensed dog owners Monday, she said. There was no word on whether they had identified the apparent owner of the dogs.

“One of the dogs is a charcoal gray pit bull and the other is a dark brown pit bull,” Webster said. “We want to find these animals and make sure they are secured, so that they don’t hurt anybody else.”

The incident began Friday morning when Natalie Lilley and her daughter, Grace, went horseback riding on R.O. and another hose called Buckshot.

Lilley said she saw a woman walking the dogs, but the animals got away from her and ran toward the horses. Natalie Lilley got between her daughter and the dogs, her husband, Clint Lilley, said Monday.

“She sent my daughter in the other direction,” he said.

Clint Lilley said Monday that the injured horse is improving. He said he had encountered the same two dogs in the wash about two months ago near the western end of Santa Clara Street.

They rushed him, he said, and he recalled telling the woman to put the dogs on a leash.
on Twitter @jamesarthurholt




chefgirl358: Posted: August 11, 2014 11:13 p.m.

I hope they find them quickly, before they really hurt someone.

DMeyer: Posted: August 12, 2014 12:20 a.m.

That dumb lady has sentenced her own dogs to death. Why on earth would she let them off leash knowing that they are dangerous and knowing that she could not control them. The dogs will pay the price for her irresponsible actions.

veggietreegirl: Posted: August 12, 2014 2:03 a.m.

I agree with DMeyer. It's sad that dogs seem to always pay for the sins of their owners. I hope they are found quick. I often walk my dogs in that area.

mrspot: Posted: August 12, 2014 10:14 a.m.

Here's the deal, there is a group of transients, one. Heavy set female with red hair, and two males who live in the wash parallel to Soledad between bouquet and whites canyon. They emerge during daylight hours and use the pit bulls to aggressively panhandle in front of k mart and super wal mart area. It's just a matter of time until these miscreants lose control of the dogs and someone is maimed or killed. I hope our dirt bike riding deputies can flush them out and confiscate the dogs for the good of the community. Until such time I only use awesome towns paseos while armed

BlueGoldgirl: Posted: August 12, 2014 11:50 a.m.

I seriously doubt that those animals are licensed. If those animals belong to transients, or someone who may be having financial struggles...the last thing on their mind is paying the annual registration fee. And giving someone in authority any information that would result in them having to pay fines/late fees is certainly not priority number one.
I do hope the animals are found, so that they cannot hurt anyone else.

chefgirl358: Posted: August 12, 2014 12:07 p.m.

I had some shmuck that lived near me a few years back. He had 2 vicious pits that he absolutely could not control. They even knocked him down one time pulling to get at me and my dog and snapping at us, but he was able to hang onto their leashes...barely. I was terrified and had a 14 yr old dog that could barely see or walk at that time, I was certain they would kill her and harm me. This jerk thought he was so cool and he thought it was funny that he had vicious dogs. He would laugh when they would try to get at me or bite us. He wasn't laughing when I bought the strongest stun gun on the market and I zapped it at them when they lunged at me one day. The guy started yelling and I told him that the next time, he'd have bigger problems than a stun gun and that those dogs were going to die one way or another, whether it was being put down by animal control or by them attacking the wrong person who was prepared to put them down themselves. I never saw them again. I don't know if he moved or if he just got rid of the dogs, but it really shook him up because he knew I was right and he was going to end up in jail and his dogs would end up dead.

Stun guns are totally legal to carry (but a felony to misuse on people so be mindful of that) and are inexpensive. I highly recommend them. Usually just the noise of them is enough to frighten an animal away, I have made the zapping noise at coyotes and critters over the years and they scatter mighty quick.

EgbertSouse4U: Posted: August 12, 2014 12:24 p.m.

Chefgirl: There was some guy with two vicious pits near alamendre park I encountered with my friendly LEASHED black lab. He could barely control his dogs who were trying to get at my dog. We quickly walked away and when I looked back, the guy was laying on top of one of the pits. Why the hell do people want to own vicious dogs?

And I agree with BlueGoldgirl. Why would animal control say they think these dogs are licensed???? Based on what?

BlueGoldgirl: Posted: August 12, 2014 1:10 p.m.

@Egbert - With all of that Animal Control "manpower" pouring over registration records, perhaps it will keep them off the streets door-knocking homes (as they had planned to do later this month)in an attempt to locate unregistered animals. What a money grab. I'm sorry, but they have got to have better things to do than that.

chefgirl358: Posted: August 12, 2014 3:10 p.m.


I too had a friendly leashed black lab. Mine was 14 yrs old and was a geriatric in every sense of the word. She couldn't have defended herself even if she wanted to.

I also agree with you in being puzzled about why animal control thinks they're licensed? Based on what?

And I will NEVER understand why anyone purposely wants to own vicious animals. I get why ghetto dirtbags want them, but not people who live in decent communities.

johnnyrock: Posted: August 12, 2014 3:52 p.m.

How sad for these dogs that they were raised by an they will have to pay the price for her stupidity. I hope the horse is okay. I have owned three pitbulls, mine were loving pets and part of the family....Some people should not own any animals.

tpaul: Posted: August 12, 2014 6:59 p.m.

Here Kitty Kitty

ohhyaa: Posted: August 12, 2014 8:55 p.m.

Arm yourself with wasp spray. It has a 20 foot stream and burns like heck. Totally legal. You can carry it on your lap while driving a car.

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