Questions raised after dog bites two kids, returned to owners
LIVINGSTON PARISH - A dog that's bitten two kids in Livingston Parish was released back to its owner and parents are outraged.
In January, the neighbor's Weimaraner bit Michael and Tammy Gardner's eight-year-old son, Kaden.
"After it bit me, I closed my eyes and I didn't see the dog," Kaden said.
"He got four stitches but they had to leave it open because of the gash," Michael said.
"The whole thing is we want the dog out of the neighborhood because my kid's afraid to go to his friend's house and who's to say it won't bite anybody else," Tammy said.
But the wounds that haven't fully healed aren't the only marks the dog has left on a child.
In 2011, the dog bit a child that walked into its owner's home.
"He not a dangerous dog," the dog's owner Candace Martin said, "It's unfortunate that this has happened."
Livingston Parish Deputies charged Martin with neglect, but she still wants to keep the dog and state law allows it.
"That is a state law. You hold a dog for ten days to determine for rabies then it's released back to the owner," Livingston Parish Shelter investigator Randy Stegall said. "That's for any animal control."
State law says a dog that bites someone twice within a three-year period is then labeled as "dangerous".
But it can go back to the owner once they prove they can handle it. If the dog bites for a third time, then it is euthanized.
"Three strikes you're out. It can be ruled on the first bite case or the second bite case but only by a judge," Stegall said.
The Gardners plan to file a lawsuit to get the dog out of their neighborhood.