Deer attacks, stomps pet dog in Mt. Lebanon

Incident is third reported to authorities in South Hills in past two weeks

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A dog that was attacked and stomped by a deer yesterday morning in Mt. Lebanon was in stable condition last night, but will have surgery today.

Randy, a wheaten terrier-mix who is blind and elderly, was attacked by a deer in his back yard on Theodan Drive, according to neighbors and police.

Mt. Lebanon animal control officers took Randy, who was bleeding heavily, to VCA Castle Shannon Animal Hospital shortly after the 9:10 a.m. attack. Last night a spokesman at the veterinary hospital said that in the last two weeks the staff has treated three dogs that were attacked by deer.

One of the other victims was Bailey, 7-year-old beagle, that was chased and stomped by a deer near Stoltz Road in Bethel Park on Friday. Michael Larkin said his family's pet is recovering.

In the Mt. Lebanon attack, a neighbor called police to report that a deer accompanied by fawns entered a yard in the 1700 block of Theodan Drive. Two dogs were in the yard, contained by an invisible fence. The deer attacked one of the dogs.

"The neighbor said the dogs are older and apparently couldn't maneuver too well. The deer cornered one of the dogs and stomped on it," said Mt. Lebanon police Lt. Ken Truver.

The owner of the dogs was not home at the time of the attack, and could not be reached for comment last night.

Another neighbor was taking her garbage to the curb yesterday morning when she saw Randy walking slowing on the sidewalk. She was surprised to see him outside the yard.

"Then I noticed he was dripping a trail of blood and his chest was torn open," said Elfriede Belsterling. Neighbors brought out water and towels to stop the bleeding, and police and animal control were summoned.

Last night a spokesman at the clinic said that Randy's condition had been upgraded to stable but he was expected to undergo surgery today. No further details were available.

The attack in Bethel Park was different.

"Bailey is a beagle and she does occasionally chase wild animals," Mr. Larkin said. "It was prom night and a lot of people were at our house to take pictures."

A neighbor brought Bailey to the Larkin residence.

"She said Bailey was running out of the woods and a deer was chasing our dog," Mr. Larkin said. "The deer swatted Bailey with its foot, knocking her down. When Bailey was down on the ground, the deer stomped on her, two times."

At VCA Castle Shannon, the staff said it had treated a dog attacked by a deer just a week earlier, Mr. Larkin said.

Lt. Truver said he is not aware of any other reports in Mt. Lebanon of deer attacking pets, but said "animal control officers say that at this time of year deer have fawns and will act protectively toward them."

A spokesman at the Pennsylvania Game Commission said female deer will be aggressive in the spring when they have young fawns.


Linda Wilson Fuoco can be reached at lfuoco@post-gazette.com or 412-263-3064.


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