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Dogs maul miniature
horses in Center Hill

By Staff
DOG ATTACK Dr. William Calvert of Kemper County Animal Clinic in DeKalb checks the wounds on Brandy, a 5-year-old miniature horse that was attacked last week by Staffordshire bull terriers. PHOTO BY PAULA MERRITT / THE MERIDIAN STAR
By Georgia E. Frye / staff writer
Oct. 16, 2003
As Sharon Talbert recovered from knee surgery at Jeff Anderson Regional Medical Center this week, she wasn't thinking about her Center Hill home she thought was safe and secure.
It wasn't. Three angry dogs entered Talbert's land on Monday, attacking and killing Tinker Bell, one of her five prized miniature horses animals she and her husband have been raising on her land for 15 years.
On Wednesday, Talbert was back home and still upset. She said the Monday attack came one week after another miniature horse, Brandy, was attacked by the same dogs that belong to her neighbors.
The neighbors and owners of the dogs, Joseph Reid and Judson Smith, declined to comment on the attacks. Smith said the dogs are Staffordshire bull terriers and not pit bulls which Talbert originally reported.
Vicious attack
Martha Talbert, Sharon's cousin, remembered Monday's attack in detail. Martha said she heard the dogs mauling Tinker Bell; she immediately ran to the nearby pasture to help.
The dogs charged at Martha. But she was saved by a fence that separated her from the dogs.
Dr. William Calvert, a veterinarian at the Kemper County Animal Clinic who is treating Brandy's wounds, said any dogs can become aggressive when they travel in packs.
Calvert said it is more likely for a pack of dogs to attack another animal. He added it's also possible for a pack to turn on people.
Community concerns
Dewayne Sosebee, animal control director with the Meridian Animal Control, said his agency can do little about the attacks because Lauderdale County doesn't have a leash law.
Sosebee said the dogs' owners have been told that the dogs are not allowed to run free at any time, even in their own yard.
He also said if the dogs get out again they will be picked up by animal control and the owners charged with a misdemeanor offense.
Martha said her main concern is with her neighborhood's safety.