15 Sep 2014
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Pit Bull in Vet Clinic Attack to Be Freed After Settlement

"Buddy" will not be euthanized, but his owners will have to follow strict guidelines for his future.

Pit Bull in Vet Clinic Attack to Be Freed After Settlement
A family will get to keep its beloved pet, a pit bull held by authorities after he attacked two vet techs at a Tinley Park clinic in February.

"Buddy" had been removed from the home and placed at an animal hospital in Roselle while the family awaited a "vicious dog" hearing following the attack on Feb. 21.  The family started an online petition to save Buddy, with family members saying they would do "whatever it takes" for the dog's safe return.

The Cook County State's Attorney and family lawyers worked out a settlement that will free Buddy—but with heavy restrictions.

Under the settlement, Buddy is declared a vicious dog. He's been microchipped and neutered. He must be confined at all times; when outdoors, he must be enclosed in a structure with a roof and a floor, and the bottom must be sunk into the ground at least 12 inches. Animal Control must inspect and approve of the structure. 'Beware of Dogs' signs will be clearly posted at the front and back of the residence. 

While in public, Buddy must be leashed and muzzled, on a leash no more than 4 feet long, with a responsible adult present. Inside the home, his owners must muzzle Buddy if anyone other than the residents are present. He must also be leashed and muzzled during transport from the home to the backyard enclosure. Owners must notify Animal Control 30 days in advance of any relocation of Buddy, even temporary. 

"Cook County is pleased with this settlement. It is the result of months of negotiations between the parties and avoids euthanasia of the animal," said Frank Shuftan, public information officer for Cook County. "It mandates numerous safety measures and is designed to protect the health and welfare of the public."

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