Malnourished dog kills neighbor’s pet

TRAFALGAR, Ind. (WISH) – A Trafalgar woman reached out to 24-Hour News 8, after her neighbor’s pit bull attacked and killed her dog on Friday.

Sharon Smith said Johnson County Animal Control did not take the dog away until Tuesday. Sharon Smith said she watched the starving pit bull attack and kill her dog. She even caught the whole attack on camera.

“[I felt] Very helpless. I knew that no one else was here at the time and nobody was coming at the time. And I thought, ‘Well, I’ll go get something and hit the dog and get it off.’ But then again, if it got me, then I was here by myself,” said Smith.

Smith said Trafalgar Police arrived in about three minutes. Animal Control arrived a while later. Smith said Animal Control didn’t take away the pit bull that day, but put the dog on a 10-day quarantine in the home.

“Because dogs are considered personal property. Which I get. I understand that but they cannot take them away from the owner unless the owner says it’s OK. So if you have an owner that’s not very responsible, then you have a dog that may attack anybody. And it has to attack a person before they’ll do anything.” said Smith.

24-Hour News 8 checked Indiana state law. There are only specific laws for dog attacks on humans and livestock. Johnson County Animal Control says not every county has to monitor animal on animal attack, but Johnson County does. After evaluating the situation, Michael Delp, with Animal Control, said they decided to remove the dog from the home on Tuesday. The home was unfit for an animal to live in, often was without power and the dog was very malnourished. There were also holes in the garage door and one door frame without a door, making it easy for a dog to escape.

Delp says Animal Control will evaluate the dog during the rest of the 10-day period at Animal Control shelter. Delp is still deciding what to do with the dog, and wants to see how it behaves outside the unfit environment.

Smith says she now feels safe, that the dog cannot attack her miniature horses or remaining puppy. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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