A lethal dog attack in the UK this past March was likely the result of crack cocaine, according to recent information submitted to a North London coroner’s court. The breed responsible for the attack, a Staffordshire bull terrier, is not banned by the UK’s Dangerous Dogs Act.
The horrifying attack was witnessed by a BBC film crew that was interviewing the dog’s owner for a documentary. Reportedly, the victim suddenly began to experience a seizure when his dog, Major, suddenly lunged at the owner, taking a bite at his face before going for his neck. The crew, which was not filming at the time, tried to wrestle the dog from his owner, but it was already too late. Bleeding from the throat, and with a crushed larynx, the victim had lost so much blood from the attack that ten pints of fresh blood were administered at a local hospital to try and revive him.
“He loved his dog. His dog was his world.”
The victim, a 41-year old resident of Wood Green, UK, had possibly ingested cocaine before the dog attack. This could have caused his seizure. The attack that followed was sudden, but perhaps not entirely expected. Major reportedly had attacked the owner months prior to this fatal incident. But neighbors described the dog and master as very close, and the death still came as a surprise to other neighbors.
An inquest this month revealed the likely cause: cocaine and morphine discovered in the dog’s blood and urine. Nicholas Carmichael, a veterinary toxicologist, explained his findings to the inquest, and was later quoted by the Mail Online saying that it was “likely that this attack happened because this dog had taken cocaine.”
Dog attack risk increased by unsafe drugs
With dogs, there are no absolute guarantees of complete safety from an attack. Even a small dog can take a nip at it’s owner if it feels frightened, or even as a form of play.
We are regularly cautioned about what we allow our pets to eat. Certain human foods can have life-threatening consequences to our beloved pets. The same can be said with medicines. While it is not absolutely certain that cocaine could induce a a dog attack, cocaine’s affects on people mean that a reasonable assumption could be made.
An already excitable breed of dog under the influence of an intense stimulant is not a safe combination. As this owner found out, it could be a lethal one.