A woman was viciously mauled to death by her own pit bulls, and we’ve got expert details on why the dogs attacked.
This is just so tragic. 22-year-old Bethany Lynn Stephens was mauled to death by her very own pet pit bulls while taking them out for a walk in the woods near her father’s Goochland, Virginia farm on Dec. 14. She was discovered the next day with the dogs standing guard over her lifeless and badly wounded body with her clothes torn to shreds. So why in the world would her own dogs — who pals describe as total lovebugs — suddenly turn on their owner? “Usually what will set a dog off is if you provoke it in some way. Not all will respond with aggression. Dogs just don’t go around attacking for no reason; it’s very very rare that you find a dog randomly walking and it wants to attack; they don’t have that desire like most mammals. It’s set off by some specific stimuli,” dog expert Dr. Richard H. Polsky, who runs Animal Behavior Counseling Services Inc. in Los Angeles, CA tells HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY.
“Generally, what might trigger the dog is a provocative event [or immediate triggers] — if you kick it, grab the dog by the neck, take a toy away, frighten the dog; anything that causes the dog pain. Again, it’s all dependent on the pit bull — some you can do that and they will roll over on their back, or others will violently attack until the victim is killed; which goes back to the fact that it’s all about the dog’s owner [how it’s cared for] and its breeder,” he continues.
Family and friends were shocked that the animals turned on Bethany, who had raised them since they were puppies. Dr. Polsky says we need to ask, “Were there previous warning signs? Dogs are pack-like species, so if one dog does something, the other will join in. It’s not unusual that pit bull-like dogs will attack and or kill owners.” Yikes!
“As for why this happened, you have to get into the history of the dog and the owner; whether or not the dog was acting dominant toward the owner or the owner was abusive toward them or yelled at them and most importantly, what happened immediately prior to the attack,” he adds.
Sadly we’ll never know what exactly happened to trigger the attack as Bethany was alone in the woods when her dogs turned on her. Her body wasn’t discovered until the next day when her dad realized she was missing and found her badly mauled body. Friends claim the dogs were so loving that it was impossible they could have killed her and suspected possible foul play. However, the Goochland County, VA Sheriff said that, “It was an absolutely grisly mauling.” The animals are now scheduled to be euthanized.
HollywoodLifers, would you ever own a pitbull knowing how violent they can be?