Pit Bull Draws Support After Attacking a Child

A polarizing decision is brewing about whether to spare Mickey's life after attacking a boy.

By | Posted: March 18, 2014, 3 p.m. PST

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This Feb 20, a Pit Bull attack on a four-year-old boy in Phoenix, Ariz. that caused severe physical damage is developing into an ever-deepening and emotional divide.

Michael Schennum, Arizona Republic via AP
Mickey, a Pit Bull who attacked a four-year-old boy, awaits his future in the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control facility in Phoenix, Ariz.

According to azcentral.com, the boy, Kevin Vicente, walked into a neighbor's yard and attempted to take a bone away from Mickey, his neighbor's Pit Bull. Although the Pit Bull was secured by a chain, the dog was close enough to rip skin from Vicente's face, causing massive bleeding and broken facial bones. Reconstruction on his face was needed; he will have permanent facial scarring and will most likely need emotional support. The owner of the Pit Bull gave the dog to Mariposa County Animal Care and Control permanently.

Associated Press
Kevin Vicente recovering from the attack as thousands rally to save the Mickey the dog.

Immediately after the attack, a Facebook community page called "Save Mickey” was set up to raise funds for Mickey's lawyers and awareness about the negative affects on an animal's psyche when chained up outside all day and night. There is also an inevitable discussion about whether Vicente should have been without supervision long enough to get into Mickey's personal space, much less his yard.

A video by azcentral.com's Michelle Lee about the debate states, "Internationally, tens of thousands of people around the world, from Tempe, Ariz. to the U.K., are weighing in on social media and online.”

A petition was filed at Phoenix Municipal Court (Court Case No. 14A4793044) requesting Mickey be declared a vicious dog, and be euthanized. There will be a court hearing in late March, 2014. Rodrigo Silva, director since 2004 at the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control in Phoenix says, "[Mickey] will be here until the courts decide what should be done with him. We're just waiting at this point to see what the decision is.”

A fund set up for Mickey has collected $5,600, attorney John Schill, who is representing the dog in the court petition told the Associated Press. The editorial board of the Arizona Republic noted that a fund set up for Kevin had raised only $2,500 as of last week.

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Nancy   Dudley, Georgia

3/24/2014 8:02:39 AM

Mickey shouldn't have to pay with his life for the mistakes of his human and the little boy's parents. The kid is only 4 and should have been supervised. Mickey's human should have been a better guardian and friend to him and not left him chained all the time. All dogs need to be socialized and they need love and companionship. To give them anything less is neglect. I have nine dogs and I spend time with all of them everyday. I hope that Mickey gets the chance to find a forever home and that his former guardian(who was in my opinion heartless to just abandon him) pays whatever price is necessary to satisfy the law.

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Michelle   Palos Heights, Illinois

3/24/2014 7:14:03 AM

The dog should definitely be saved! The boy should not have been unsupervised & he should not have entered private property. who is
to
blame? The boys parents for not watching him & not teaching him not
to
approach any dog without adult supervision or permission. Who else is to blame? The owner for keeping his dog chained up outside all the
time!
Neither the dog nor the child are at fault. the parents & the owner are the ones to blame. The dog is innocent & shouldn't have to pay for human's mistakes. perhaps they should be euthanized.

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Ann   Ann Arbor, Michigan

3/24/2014 5:23:25 AM

A menace to society. Hmm, by the same logic I assume that a person who believes they all should be killed would say the same for people who are in prison? You do know that years ago pit bulls used to be considered very good guardians and loving pets for children? It is only the people who can turn them into what is considered a "menace" that have created the problem. Maybe they should be the ones against whom you should vent this anger, not the unwitting animal.

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Megan - 274235   Wilmington, DE

3/23/2014 10:51:59 AM

I think that the dog should live. Sure, I feel bad that the kid got attacked, but he was stupid (no offense) to take a bone from a dog that large. Also, the kids parents should have been watching him. If they did the dog would be fine and their son wouldn't be in this situation. Also, I agree with Sharon, why chain an animal that can rip off half of someone's face? Those owners are stupid (again, no offense) to leave such a creature tied up. You're hurting the dog and making the people unsafe. How is putting an animal that is just protecting itself and bone to sleep going to help anyone? Oh yeah, it isn't. I feel bad for this dog. It shouldn't have to go through this. This is just sad for this dog. Please don't kill this animal. It's not his fault. And if we kill it, so many more will replace it. It doesn't change a single thing at all.

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