Wareham Selectmen order dogs to be euthanized after second attack

Mar 5, 2019

A recent attack by two pit bull-mix dogs deemed dangerous last June has resulted in their death sentence.

On Tuesday, Wareham Selectmen ordered the dogs, owned by Paul and Laura Geigel, to be euthanized after Animal Control Officer Cheryl Gorveatt-Dill said they posed danger to the community.  

Selectmen had previously deemed the two pit bulls, named Amelia and Jackson, dangerous after they attacked a woman near the Papermill Cranberry Bogs last summer, causing severe injuries to her left hand and behind her right knee.   

After the attack, Selectmen placed multiple restrictions on the dogs, including increasing the height of the fence in the area that they were kept and ensuring that the dogs did not leave the property without leash and muzzle. The selectmen also ordered the Geigels to provide proof of dog training back in June, but they failed to do so.

“Unfortunately, with a heavy heart, I don't feel that I have faith in this dogs’ owner to be responsible and prevent further incidents,” said Gorveatt-Dill.

According to Gorveatt-Dill, the most recent attack by the dogs occurred last month when they escaped their owner’s property and attacked a neighbor's dog.

Although Paul Geigel did not attend the hearing, he issued the Selectmen a written statement in which he apologized and took full responsibility for the incident.

Geigel also mentioned that he did not learn about the attack until hours later. According to his statement, Geigel was in the process of putting the dogs inside his SUV when they ran off.

“The dogs ran off towards the property line next door but immediately came back and jumped into the vehicle,” said Geigel in his statement. “Only sixty seconds or so has elapsed. I heard my dogs barking briefly. I did not see anything through the trees. I assumed the dogs were chasing a squirrel.”

Although Selectman Patrick Tropeano voted for dogs’ euthanization, he expressed frustration towards the lax owners.

“Animals don’t do these things when they are being taken care of by their owners,” said Tropeano. “It is sad that we are going to penalize these two dogs just because the owners let them down.”