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Fowlerville woman to speak at Lansing rally for victims of dog attacks

A Fowlerville woman whose dog died after being attacked by another dog will be speaking at a rally next month in Lansing.

Leticia Spagnuolo’s dog Pearl was attacked in her own fenced in yard in May of 2022 after a pair of dogs had gotten loose and were “terrorizing” the neighborhood of Power Street in Fowlerville.

After one of the dogs, a 100 pound Bull Mastiff, got into her fenced yard, Spagnuolo says she was able to pull the dog off Pearl, who only weighed twelve pounds, but not before her dog suffered several serious wounds, including collapsed lungs and a punctured bowel, requiring a five hour surgery at the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine in East Lansing. However, Pearl later succumbed to her injuries and passed away.

Spagnuolo says despite the fact that her dog was mauled and the Mastiff broke the skin on her hand trying to defend Pearl, authorities were originally not cooperative in dealing with the situation, although after her advocacy, Livingston County Animal Control was able to get the Mastiff’s owners to voluntarily surrender the dog to be euthanized.

The Livingston County Prosecutor’s Office also eventually charged the owners with a misdemeanor criminal charge of having a dog at large. But Spagnuolo believes much more needs to be done.

In the aftermath of dealing with Pearl’s death, she discovered a group called Promoting Public Safety through Canine Awareness Education and Legislation.

The group will be holding a Tribute to Victims of Dangerous Dogs on Wednesday October 25, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the East Steps of the Michigan Capitol in Lansing.

Spagnuolo says she will be speaking at the event regarding her experience with Pearl and invites anyone else with a similar story or who wants to support the group’s efforts at strengthening laws around dangerous dogs to attend.

Specifically, the group is hoping to see increased enforcement of Michigan’s Dangerous Dog Act 426, enactment of a “Truth in Pet Adoption Law” and the creation of a statewide Central Database for Dangerous Dogs.

Spagnuolo has also created a Facebook page called Justice for Pearl.

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