Dog Bite | Animal Behavior Expert Witness For Attorneys

Richard H. Polsky, Ph.D. CDBC
Los Angeles, California

“Bringing the science of animal behavior to attorneys”

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Texas records first dog bite fatality in USA for 2014

Texas, the state with more dog bite fatalities in the USA than any other, recorded the first reported bite fatality in the USA on January 4, 2014.  The fact that the incident happened in Texas is not surprising and even predictable, given that sociocultural factors in Texas probably act to increase the likelihood of fatal dog attacks on people.

The incident happened when a group of three stray pit bulls attacked a homeless woman in the early morning near the intersection of Lenora and Prairie in Houston Texas. This section of Houston, according to those who live in the area, has a serious problem with stray pit bulls running loose.

Witnesses heard screams, and upon their arrival at the scene they found the victim covered in blood with numerous dog bites on her body.  A man came to the aid of the victim and was also attacked, but he survived.  Moreover, just a few minutes prior to these attacks, the same group of pit bulls attacked another woman not far from the scene.  And this same pack of dogs attacked and seriously injured yet another person about a week before!

These attacks highlights the serious public health problem of stray dogs running loose in many urban and rural areas in the United States. The problem is particularly acute in the financially bankrupt city of Detroit. However, the problem is not confined to the United States, but also is found European countries, notably Italy and Turkey.  Animal control efforts, to the extent which these efforts have been taken, do little to minimize the problem. The problem in part continues because people continue abandon dogs. These abandoned dogs form social packs, and this in turn allows the packs to propagate. 


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