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Dog in fatal mauling on verge of being euthanized

Updated August 23, 2022 - 10:38 am

The city of Las Vegas has deemed a dog that killed a woman two weeks ago to be vicious, meaning the animal is on the verge of being euthanized.

Buck the pit bull mauled Joan Cafflel, 89, on Aug. 9 at an apartment at 4124 Pennwood Ave., between Valley View Boulevard and Arville Street. Caregiver Gelena Kelly and Cafflel’s grandson, Peyton Faircloth, described the dog’s actions as out of character.

City spokesman Jace Radke said on Monday that the dog has been deemed vicious. Faircloth was notified of the city’s decision Friday.

“They can appeal it to a hearing officer at the city if the owner doesn’t want the dog to be euthanized,” Radke said.

The owner has until Aug. 29 to make a decision, but Faircloth, 39, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal on Monday his family does not plan to appeal.

“I feel if an animal is going to cross that boundary and attack and kill a person, that is a bad animal,” Faircloth said. “If I fight it and save him who is to say he couldn’t do it again?”

Buck is housed at The Animal Foundation in Las Vegas. A city ordinance states that an animal can be deemed vicious if it constitutes a physical threat to people or animals.

Faircloth lived at the apartment with Cafflel, Kelly, and his son. He said said the attack has shocked the family because the dog seemed to have a gentle disposition. He said the family continued to mourn the loss of Cafflel.

“You know all the stories about people with dementia, how they’re ornery or aggressive,” Faircloth said. “My grandma was completely opposite of that. Every word out of her mouth was ‘sweetheart, ‘babe.’ ”

Contact Glenn Puit at gpuit@reviewjournal.com. Follow @GlennatRJ on Twitter.

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