Pit bull attacks Lantana woman, kills her dog

A casual weekend barbeque takes a terrifying turn when a neighbor's pit bull attacks -- mauling a local woman and killing her pet. Animal control officers say this isn't the first time the dog has been in trouble.

"It was just so fast and so vicious. I have never seen anything like that," said 56-year-old Shelly Puritz.

Puritz says the dog's teeth were locked around her arm. "And I just saw this black head on my hand. It was just so much pressure; it hurt."

The pit bull attack quickly ended a weekend barbeque in front of a Lantana home Saturday evening.

Puritz quickly grabbed her dog, Coki. The 10-pound Pomeranian was no match for the fully grown black pit bull. "[The pit bull] picked her up and the dog got into her, and I just saw her being thrown around in his mouth," she described.

Friends were scrambling to free Puritz and her dog. Both were badly bleeding and the pit bull was still loose. "It was horrifying; there was so much blood, and, I mean, my arm was just ripped open."

But, they say, the attack wasn't over yet. After the dog was pulled off once, it lunged again sinking its teeth into her arms.

The dog's owner explains how something like this could happen. "Just as simple as leaving the door open, and he got out," said Cory Husten. He says the front door was locked, but it wasn't shut when his 3-year-old pit bull, Khimani went charging.

The wooden fence in the front yard isn't much help; a hole is big enough for a pit bull to get out. Animal control officers say Khimani has a record. He was also was running loose a year ago.

Puritz says the owners were there after the attack, but didn't apologize right away. "They didn't say a word to me. I was sitting there dripping blood -- my blood, my dog's blood."

Now, a day later, the dog's owner has this to say. 'I'd really like to say that I'm terribly sorry to this woman and about her dog."

For now, his dog is quarantined at Palm Beach County Animal Control locked behind three fences. Meanwhile, Puritz will bury her dog in the family garden.

Animal control officers say the pit bull will be quarantined for 10 days. They aren't sure if his rabies shots are up to date.

For now, no decision has been made about putting him down.

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