Police kill dog, wound another to stop mauling

Ottawa police shot and killed one dog and injured another during a mauling incident that put one person in the hospital on Monday night.

Police were called to a house in the area of Bank Street and Athans Avenue around 11 p.m. after receiving reports of a person screaming, according to a news release.

When the two officers arrived at the intersection of Bank and Athans, they were approached by a "large dog that was lunging toward them in an attack fashion," police spokesperson Const. Charles Benoit told reporters later Tuesday.

"The officers took this very seriously and they had to [fire] a gunshot to stop the threat."

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The injured dog then retreated into the house, and the officers turned their attention to a screaming 44-year-old woman on the ground outside the home, who was being mauled by another dog that was on top of her, Benoit said.

Police then shot and killed the second dog.

The victim suffered multiple bite wounds on her head, neck and arms, according to paramedics. She was taken to hospital with serious but not life-threatening injuries.

No officers were injured.

Dogs now with Ottawa Humane Society

There were four dogs at the home at the time of the incident, and there is no evidence to suggest they're a prohibited breed, according to Ottawa's bylaw department.

The city's animal care and control bylaw states that a maximum of three adult dogs can be kept at one dwelling, and Ottawa bylaw program manager Jake Gravelle told reporters Tuesday the department is looking into whether the bylaw was violated.

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People can keep more than three adult dogs if they're operating a licensed boarding kennel, in-home breeding kennel, recreational kennel or pet shop, or if they're registered with the city as providing temporary foster care.

The three dogs that weren't killed in Monday night's incident were taken into protective custody by bylaw officers, and are currently in the care of the Ottawa Humane Society.

"Seeing that there was an attack that occurred last night and that an animal was shot, in the interest of public safety we've taken these animals into protective care until they can be evaluated and our investigation is complete," Gravelle said.

'Proper means were used,' police say

The bylaw department is leading the ongoing investigation, with assistance from Ottawa police.

Asked why the officers didn't use a Taser to stop the dogs, Benoit said a firearm is also a good tool to deploy.

"When an officer uses a weapon ... we assess the situation, and if it's to stop a threat towards bodily injuries or death, a weapon of that calibre is a good tool to use," he said.

"A Taser could also be a tool to be used, but that [isn't something to be answered] at this time. It's still under investigation, and the proper means were used at the time to save a woman who was being attacked, for her safety."