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From the Forum: “Lincoln Park dog incident 4/6/2016”

by Prince Of Petworth April 13, 2016 at 2:00 pm 66 Comments


“Dear dog owners and neighbors:

On April 6, 2016, around 7pm, there was an incident in Lincoln Park with an offleash dog that resulted in my (leashed) dog Kiki having three puncture wounds on her neck and needing immediate serious vet care.

I am trying to locate the owner of this dog. The offleash dog was medium-large size (50 to 70 pounds?), tan/brown, shorthaired. Maybe named Kirby, or something similar.

If you know the owner, or are the owner, please contact me as soon as possible.

Thank you for your help.”

You can see all forum topics and add your own here. If you are having trouble uploading your question please email me at princeofpetworth(at)gmail Please Note this is NOT an events calendar.

  • JMo

    Oh, poor baby! I hope your pup heals quickly.

  • Sarah

    Can you give us a description of the owner? Man, woman, etc?

  • anon

    Have you checked the Moms on the Hill listserv? I’m pretty sure they know all

    • anon kingman park

      Also New Hill East (listserv and facebook) and Hill Hounds listserv

      • anon kingman park

        ps – so sorry your dog was attacked! I know how scary it is, and I hope you both have a quick recovery.

  • That One Guy

    Is there a listserv for the area/dog park? Maybe that would hit a more targeted audience who could help identify the owner.
    That said, I hope the dog that was the aggressor is up to date on its shots.

  • Brett M

    This is why all you dog owners at Lincoln park should abide by the law and keep your dogs on leashes. I was attacked by an unleashed dog on 2 occasions (nothing serious) while the owners were present.

    • Jenn

      My leashed dog, minding his own business, has been attacked multiple times over the years at Lincoln Park. I really wish owners would follow the law, or at least know whether or not there dog is REALLY under voice command and pay attention to what their dog is doing.

    • Hill Denizen

      I seriously don’t get it. If you want to live in the country and let your dog run free, go live in the frickin country. You live in the city. This is a city park surrounded by traffic on all side. Put your dog on a leash.

      • chris Williams

        If only Park Police would patrol the park again.

      • MsSunshine

        +1. And if you don’t, you should get a hefty ticket.

    • eggs

      +1000 to everyone above me.

      • Ally

        +1000. I had a friend who would always let his dog off-leash at Lincoln Park. Drove me NUTS. The dog nearly got killed running out into traffic twice and he still did it. His rationale was that his dog had never bitten anyone. Not quite the point. Anyway, he and his dog are now out in the suburbs, so wasn’t him, but boy I sure wish people would keep their dogs on a leash. You can still let them run on a long leash, but can keep them safe. Same issue with people who let their cats roam, then wonder why their cats get hit by cars or get FIV. :( Best wishes for a speedy recovery to the injured dog!

  • ParkViewneighbor

    Dogs are dogs, not programmed robots

    • derp derp

      Which is why things like leash laws exist.

      • ParkViewneighbor

        I was just implying that dogs can get into fights, on a walk, at the park, so on so forth. Whether or not your pup is on a leash, it still can happen

        • textdoc

          D.C. regs say that dogs need to be on leashes of no more than 4 feet and that leash-holders have to be able to manage their dogs. As long as both of these provisions are followed, if a fight _did_ start between two leashed dogs, the owners could quickly pull them apart.

          • ParkViewneighbor

            yep…. sure…

          • Shawnnnnnn

            I assure you that is not true. It helps, no doubt, and the law makes sense. But there’s no guarantee a leash will prevent two dogs from scrapping and I’m a 200 pound male who would struggle to pull my 100 pound dog off another one if he thought he was defending me.

          • textdoc

            Fair enough… I should have added a qualifier like “presumably.”

        • figby

          I used to love off-leashing my dog, it felt really good. Then he attacked another dog, for no apparent reason. And I felt like total crap, and it was a terrible mess. Lesson learned. Now my dog is leashed even in our own yard. I get why it’s fun to have your dog go commando — but not in the city. It’s wrong, and it’s totally aggressive. Don’t do it, not worth it.

          • 8th Street SE

            Couldn’t that have happened just as easily in a dog park? I understand that unleashing dogs in Lincoln Park is a bad idea because they can run into traffic or engage with people that don’t want to be around dogs, but fights between dogs can happen anyplace where dogs are loose (or in some cases even on leashes).

        • anon

          lot harder to run away and attack someone/thing if dog’s on a leash thou… come on now

          • flieswithhoney

            Interestingly, I’ve encountered many more leashed dogs with aggression problems than unleashed aggressive dogs while running with my dog all over town. So many owners just stand there looking helpless while their dog is snarling as my (leashed) dog and I run by. Just a lot of crappy untrained owners and dogs all around. To the OP, I hope you and your dog are doing better.

  • districtwanderer

    Oh poor thing. Hope she gets well soon. It never ceases to astound me that people let their dogs roam off-leash in such an enormous park, with lots of traffic to boot. I wouldn’t blame you if you gave Kirby a good kick in the ribs…

    • In the face

      Or the owner…

      • Hill Denizen

        Yeah, don’t blame the dog for being a dog. Blame the owner for being an idiot.

    • Ms. D

      I sit with Rover, and once met an owner in Stanton Park for a meet-and-greet (her choice of location). She let her dog run off-leash while I had a minor panic attack every time he got anywhere near the sidewalk, forget the street. And then she asked why I didn’t let *my* dog off-leash! I demurred a bit with a “oh, he likes to chase cars, so it might be a problem,” but I was in a total state of panic during that entire meet-up just seeing her sweet dog getting flattened by a car in my head. Her dog had a lovely stay with me, with on-leash walk and off-leash romps IN MY FULLY-FENCED YARD AND IN THE LEGAL, FENCED DOG PARK SEVERAL BLOCKS AWAY. It’s not untrue that my dog likes to chase cars, so that’s a bit of a concern, but it’s far MORE of a concern that I wouldn’t have total control/containment of him in anything resembling a busy area. When I visit my friend who has almost an acre of property and no busy roads nearby with my dog in tow, he gets to be off-leash without a fence containing him (not the least because HER dog knows his boundaries and “herds” my dog to stay inside them, and ALSO because I still go out with him and make sure he stays on the property), but there’s nowhere in DC that doesn’t have a fence that my, or most, dogs can *safely* be off-leash.

  • textdoc

    I don’t see any contact information for the OP — if someone has information on this dog’s owner, should it be sent to the Prince of Petworth for him to forward to the OP?

  • General Grant Circle

    I take it the “incident” was a dogfight. This is why we have leashes. If you want to give your dog more space, get one of those ones that draws out and tightens with a quick tug

    • anon

      Those are actually terrible and cause dog owners to have less control over their dogs. They also contribute to serious injuries to dogs, people (amputations of fingers, for instance) etc since the rope is so thin. If the owner loses a grip on the leash, especially if it’s fully extended, then the dog has a hulking piece of plastic quickly flying toward it as the leash retracts again. I wish people wouldn’t use these leashes at all, but especially in the city. They’re bad news.

      • eggs

        Agree, they are awful for urban areas particularly, but really aren’t great for any use. Growing up, my mom was out walking our ~75 lb. dog in our backyard in a rural area with a retractable leash – the dog saw a rabbit and bolted for it, and the thin rope wrapped around her left ring finger and broke it in multiple places. 4 surgeries and a plate installed on her finger bone later, she doesn’t have even 50% of the movement in that finger, 15ish years later.
        Also, I was out walking my dog last year here (urban area) and we ran into an elderly lady walking her chihuahua on a retractable leash, and she couldn’t get the chihuahua back to her when it decided to attack my dog. Thankfully my dog didn’t care and thought they were playing, and the chihuahua’s mouth was way too small to get around any part of my dog and do any damage, but she had literally zero control over that dog. She kept hitting the button to pull the leash back (which just lets it out if the dog pulls) which just let the dog continue coming towards us as I pulled mine away.

    • Anonymous

      No! The retractable leashes are really really bad for city use. They actually give the owner *less* control of the dog. And they’re a danger to passersby – I’ve been tripped and clotheslined because of owners not paying attention to the fact that their dog has wandered off, extending a tripwire across the distance between them.

  • Woodridge

    I’m so sorry – my dog was attacked once and it can be very traumatic. Fortunately my dog recovered mentally faster than I did!

  • Lpo

    I am so so sorry! My heart breaks for you. I hope your fur baby recovers quickly. I get really pissed about all of the off-leash dogs I see in the parks and on trails. We’ve had multiple incidents where large dogs who are off leash will charge at our two small dogs while we are on the trails of Great Falls or Rock Creek Park. We are vulnerable – all my husband and I can do is pick our little dogs up above our heads. Our dogs have been attacked before by a large off-leash dog and it was the worst experience of our lives. Fortunately, my dogs recovered. We can’t even enjoy ourselves anymore. When people let their dogs off leash, it is inconsiderate at best (other owners will be fearful and can’t enjoy the trail/park, owner will not pick up their off leash dog’s poop) and at worst things like this happen. Again, I am so sorry.

  • Eric Luntz

    What breed of dog was the attacker?

  • tonyr

    How do you know the dog’s name was Kirby?

  • aktodc

    I am so sorry about your pup. I would suggest a cross post on the Hill East listserve/facebook account.

    I will keep an eye out. I think I have seen the offending dog – and it has nipped at me before. But I don’t know any of the details.

    • Ally

      Agreed. I’m on that listserv. People are very responsive (let me know if you need help posting).

  • Mister Frackles

    This makes me so mad! I hope your dog heals quickly. I’m tired of going to the park and being harassed by unleashed dogs. The times I’ve been to Mitchell Park lately, it’s a free for all. I’m a small person and it can be really intimidating. Does anyone know how to report owners who aren’t leashing their dogs?

  • neighbor

    People are out of control with their dogs both in Lincoln and RCP. The city seriously needs to crack down on this.

  • BACapHill

    I’m sorry to hear about your dog! Lincoln Park can be very unpredictable. There is a dog with a name that sounds like “Derby” that goes to the park often. However, the dog I’m thinking of always seems friendly playing with the other dogs and interacting with people. I do not know any details. It might not hurt to return to the park and ask around. I hope you find them!

    • Archaeog

      I was also wondering if this could be Derby but it would seem unusual to me. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him act aggressively.

  • anonymouse_dianne

    Do you know how dog trainers refer to Dog Parks?
    “Lord of the Flies”

  • Pixie

    I hate when people think leash laws don’t apply to them. I’m so sorry this happened to your dog and hope she has a quick recovery.

  • SassyinDC

    For those who want to walk their dogs off-leash, they should consider getting on the waiting list for Congressional Cemetery.

  • dogsgalore24

    I am so sorry. It’s really horrifying – my dog is 11 and has been attacked twice by off-leash dogs. It sounds like it might not be that hard to find the owner. Good luck!

  • irene antonucci

    Besides all the dangers posted below when dogs are off leash another danger is being shot and killed by the police It happens all the time A dog off leash was shot/killed by a police officer last week or so in DC The comment is usually the dog charged at me
    Clearly few police are taught canine body language or how to handle loose dogs humanely Hope the mayor will implement training for the police dept She did say recently DC police will be cutting edge I did email Cathy Lanier last month re training but never received acknowledgement

    • In the past 4 years, Washington Humane Spciety has been providing training to MPD on dog behavior as well as the use of a ketch-pole (yup, mental image of that good ‘ol dogcatcher pole) and MPD have some vehicles equipped with them. This is much more progressive than other LE agencies.

  • irene antonucci

    Share with dog lovers http://yourdogsfriend.org which has tons of rescources on training our dogs
    If your dog injures another dog do the right thing stay on the scene, help including paying for the vet care Yes dogs can fight but it is our responsibility to keep them on leash and safe , to learn canine body language esp our own dogs language and for many dogs keep them away from dogs they do not know
    forgot to mention just google dogs shot by police in DC There is also a FB dogsshotbypolice

  • CapitalDame

    I’m so sorry that this happened to you. My dog is friendly, but does NOT like being approached by offleashed dogs when he is unleashed. He almost always lashes out when they run up to him, because he feels trapped, and I really don’t want people to think that he is aggressive. I don’t take him to Lincoln Park anymore because of it.

    • 8th Street SE

      That’s actually the reason why I take my dogs off leash when we go to Lincoln Park. I always go with a plan to keep them on the leashes, but they get so anxious seeing the other dogs off-leash that I usually give in. I actually love the ambiance of the park when it’s full of dogs and their owners. A lot of people are trying to paint it as a madhouse where fights are constantly breaking out, and it’s not like that at all. It would be nice if the city could fence off that center field and just have it as a dog park to keep everyone safer.

      • bold_robot

        You are the problem. Not your dogs, not other dogs. You.

        • 8th Street SE

          Where did I say there was a problem? Or are you saying I’m responsible for this poor dog being attacked?

          • bold_robot

            People allowing their dogs off-leash in the city are inconsiderate, selfish, a-holes. Why not take your dogs to the fenced in dog park 3 blocks North of Lincoln where your dogs can run free and you won’t have to worry about them being involved in a preventable situation?

          • 8th Street SE

            That’s getting to the point where it’s too far for them to walk (they’re small dogs and it takes us a while just to get to Lincoln from where we live) and the dogs there sometimes seem aggressive (I’ve never gotten that feeling from the ones at Lincoln Park). It’s not like a fight couldn’t happen there just because it’s a real dog park. But usually we just avoid all parks, because like CapitalDame said, it’s stressful when you’re trying to walk dogs on a leash and other dogs are running free around them.

  • elb

    This drives me NUTS about living on the Hill. People walk around w/ dogs off leash all the damn time, nor do they pay attention to their dog when it is. My pup isn’t good with other dogs so I never take her off…but that doesn’t stop other offleash dogs from running up to her, even when we aren’t IN a park, which she thinks is a threat. “Oh my dog is friendly.” Yeah well, baby, mine isn’t, and if mine reacts b/c I can’t get her into my arms in time and injures your dog, you are to blame. Ignorance…

  • 8th Street SE

    Out of curiosity, how do these incidents happen without any identification of the attacker? Do they and the owner make a run for it after the fight occurs? Or does the owner of the victim not realize there was a wound until later? I feel like we’ve seen a few of these posts and I always wonder why the dog has to be tracked down after the fact.

    • anon

      My guess is that if the injury looks serious, the injured dog’s owner is preoccupied with the well-being of the dog and getting him/her veterinary care ASAP.

      • 8th Street SE

        And the owner of the other dog doesn’t stick around? And all the people around them don’t say or do anything? That doesn’t make sense to me.

    • anon

      When my dog was attacked once, I was so freaked out and worried about my dog that I could not pay attention to anything other than my dog. The owner of the attacking dog stayed for a minute or two but left before we noticed the really bad wound on my dog. We didn’t notice him leave because we were so focused on our dog.

      • 8th Street SE

        If it was that bad wouldn’t you have asked them to provide proof of rabies vaccination (or wouldn’t they have offered to provide it)? Once it’s obvious there’s a wound that should have been the next step, regardless of how minor it first appears.

        • anon

          As I said, we didn’t notice the broken skin until the owner left. He snuck off while we were tending to our dog, after asking “is he okay?” but not really waiting for a response.

    • flieswithhoney

      My then puppy was bitten on the snout by a whippet. Her fur is black and long enough that I didn’t realize it was a significant bite versus a nip until we were at home, poor thing.

  • anon

    I may have information that would help the owner. But there’s no contact information. How ought I to get in touch?


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