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DORI MONSON

Woman attacked by pit bulls near homeless camp: ‘These dogs have more rights than me’

UPDATED: MAY 18, 2022 AT 3:37 PM
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Weekdays on KIRO Newsradio 12pm-3pm

With more than 12 vicious dog bites on her legs and “way too many” stitches to count, Amy Craven was released from the hospital this week following an 11-day stay to recover from an attack by two pit bull terriers near North Lake Union.

Adding insult to her injury: discovering that the two dogs who mauled her were returned to their owner – a woman who lives in box truck at a homeless camp off Fairview Avenue East.

“These dogs have more rights than me,” the Seattle mom told The Dori Monson Show on Wednesday.

The attack occurred April 22 during her routine morning walk, Craven said. It was a routine route for her, she continued, because it offers scenic views of the lake, houseboats and a community P-Patch around East Allison Street near Good Turn Park.

Several minutes into her walk, Craven told Dori’s listeners, she saw “two pit bulls. They started barking aggressively, but they were pretty far away from me.”

Craven said she froze, hoping her stillness would deter the dogs. Instead, the dogs bolted at her from a homeless encampment, so she began to run.

“By that time, one of them already had my leg and I got pulled to the ground,” Craven said. “They just kept biting. . . My brain was saying `you have to get up off the ground.’

“I’m screaming `Jesus, please save me,’” the Seattle woman recalled. “If I was a child, the child would have been dead.”

Workers at nearby Union Marine and another surrounding business rushed to her aid. One Good Samaritan began throwing hammers “that were hitting the dogs, but they were still attacking me.”

Eventually, these rescuers pulled her into the Union Marine building, where one employee used a belt to tourniquet her leg.

“They saved my life, no doubt about it,” Craven told Dori.

Now at home on crutches and using a walker, she is dealing with exposed tendons and a place where “a giant piece of my leg is missing.”

What about the fate of the dogs? Dori asked.

Seattle Animal Shelter “gave them back to the owner the night I was attacked,” Craven said. “My family was outraged. . . They blew animal control’s phone up all weekend, demanding answers.”

Only after this outcry, said Craven, were the dogs confiscated by Seattle Animal Shelter.

Seattle’s rules say dangerous dogs must be “euthanized or relocated outside the Seattle city limits,” Dori explained. “If the dogs did this to you, and we move them to Bothell, who’s to say they’re not going to kill someone there?”

Meanwhile, Craven said, no criminal charges have been filed against the homeless box truck dweller and dog owner “as of yet.

“The owner should be in jail,” she added. “She was nowhere to be found.”