LUMBERTON — Seven dogs that killed a Pembroke woman earlier this week were euthanized on Friday.
According to Health Director Bill Smith, the dogs were at least part pit bull, contradicting an earlier report that they were German shepherds.
They were seized from a Pembroke home on Tuesday after they killed a 53-year-old Pembroke woman in the backyard of her home at 17 Sharon Lane. The victim, Betty Jo Hunt, was a rescuer and apparently was trying to break up a dogfight when she was attacked.
The dogs were immediately impounded at the Robeson County Animal Shelter, where they were held until they were euthanized on Friday. Smith said that county protocol requires that any animals that cause life-threatening injuries or kill a person be euthanized.
A pug that Hunt was trying to protect from an attack by the pitbulls has also died, according to Smith.
Two other dogs seized from Hunt’s home are being held in isolation at the shelter and will continue to be assessed, Smith said. All of the dogs at Hunt’s home were rescued animals.
Smith said that all of the dogs involved in the attack were mixed breeds with pitbull features and several were “very aggressive.”
Smith said that none of the animals had been rescued from the county shelter. He said the shelter is careful not to adopt out potentially dangerous dogs, but animals that are typically well-behaved can become aggressive in a pack.
Hunt, who worked with Claws and Paws animal rescue, is remembered as an animal lover who opened her home to stray dogs. She was a widow, mother of three and worked at a law office in downtown Lumberton.