Man Says Dog Attack Nearly Cost Him His Arm
By Christy Aumer and Jillian Petrus, Reporters
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - A Cedar Rapids man says he nearly "lost his arm" after a dog attack Saturday morning.
57-year-old Roger Johnson was walking his German Pincher around 8 a.m. when he encountered a pit bull near the intersection of Ellis Blvd NW and Penn Avenue NW. Johnson says the dog chased him to a nearby abandoned house. He says a neighbor knocked the dog off him with a wooden 2x4 plank they found at the abandoned house.
"This pit bull was lunging at us," Johnson said. "I was really scared."
Officers arrived on the scene shortly after the attack and drove Johnson to St. Luke's Hospital for his injuries. Doctors there told him if the bite to his right bicep was any deeper he would have lost his arm.
Johnson says he usually walks with his dog in the area, but doesn't always take the same route. He says he normally avoids the intersection of Ellis Blvd NW and Penn Avenue NW because he knows a house in the area has more than one pit bull and that the dogs are often not on a leash.
Cedar Rapids Animal Control officers told Johnson that the dog that attacked him did not have tags and would have to remain in their custody for 10 days. Cedar Rapids Police supervise the shelter and spokeswoman Cristy Hamblin confirmed that they have the dog in custody.
Police told Johnson they filed a viscous dog report on Monday because the dog ran after him. Neither Animal Control nor Cedar Rapids police would comment on the case, saying it is still under investigation.
"From all of this, I have learned I am going to buy a mace bottle or pepper spray," Johnson said. "That seems to be the best way to handle these situations.
Johnson hopes to return to work as an engineer for the CRANDIC railroad next week.
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