Owner cited for dog’s aggressive behavior

The owner of a dog killed last week for being aggressive has been cited.

A Juneau animal control investigation into Friday’s incident shows a 15-year-old boy fired warning shots to shoo away dogs that were on his family’s property. But a Rottweiler mix charged him and the frightened youth fired several rounds, killing the dog.

Animal Control officer Ben Peyerk says the boy and his siblings were confronted by the roaming dogs when they got off the school bus in the 5400 block of North Douglas Highway. The three dogs reportedly prevented the kids from getting to their house. Then the dogs left and the kids went home, only to have the pack return.

The investigation indicates the barking, aggressive dogs wouldn’t leave, so the 15-year-old retrieved a gun from his home.

Peyerk says the boy was scared for his family, and his own dog and cats that were outside at the time.

“I can’t imagine walking up your driveway as a young student and being confronted with something like that. That’s nothing I would want anybody to have to experience,” Peyerk says.

The dogs apparently had been wandering for a while. Gastineau Humane Society Director Matt Musselwhite says their behavior fits the description of aggressive animal behavior in the CBJ code.

“Title 8, which is the section of the city ordinance that covers animals, defines an aggressive animal as one that snaps at, jumps upon, of otherwise menaces, injures or frightens a person, domestic animals or livestock,” Musselwhite says.

He says Bianca Lynn Erickson has been cited for an aggressive dog, a $50 fine for the first offense.  She also was cited for allowing the dogs to roam, and failing to license the dogs.  Musselwhite says Erickson was given a warning for failing to have the dogs vaccinated against rabies.

“Keeping your pets properly restrained is the only way to ensure the safety of your pets and the general public,” he says. “You know, it really is. If you have your animal contained, a thing like this doesn’t happen.”

Investigating officer Peyerk put it this way: An animal was killed and it was 100 percent preventable.

Juneau police are also investigating the incident.

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