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Owner of Donkey Attack Dogs Fined $334

Police say the donkey attacked by Erin L. Newlin's two dogs is expected to make a full recovery. Newlin herself suffered abrasions from the donkey bite but no more, police say.

 

New Canaan police on Monday said the owner of two dogs that breached their invisible fence and attacked a miniature donkey has been fined $334 in connection with the incident.

Erin L. Newlin of Lantern Ridge Road has been cited for two counts each of allowing a dog to roam and owning a nuisance dog, according to Officer Mary Ann Kleinschmitt of the department's animal control unit.

The 49-year-old must pay the fine or plead to the infraction offenses by Feb. 8, Kleinschmitt told Patch.

On Jan. 23, Newlin's two Siberian husky mix dogs breached an invisible fence at home and attacked the donkey in its corral on nearby North Wilton Road, causing serious injury. During the scuffle, Newlin arrived and pulled her dogs off successfully. However, the donkey bit Newlin's right forearm, prompting paramedics to take her to a hospital, police have said.

The arm wasn't broken, Kleinschmitt said.

"She went to have it X-rayed because we believed there could be some broken bones because of the tenderness of the forearm and the fact that she was thrown to the ground," Kleinschmitt said. "The good news is that nothing was broken. She does have some abrasions from the bite itself."

The miniature donkey also is faring well physically, police said.

"There's been no infection," Kleinschmitt said. "He's still sore but came out of the garage yesterday [Sunday] and is walking around the paddock. The vet was there on Friday because they were not able to hold the body temperature of the donkey, but he seems to be healing well and has even gotten a little stubborn as they [donkeys] do."

"It looks like he's going to be just fine," she continued.

The harrowing incident has stirred high emotions in New Canaan, with several Patch commenters weighing in on the dog owner's culpability as well as the relative well-wishes for the injured human versus the animal.

New Canaan-based Strays and Others volunteer Claudia Weber said her heart "absolutely goes out to the woman and the poor donkey."

"This is a perfect example of why invisible fences do not really protect animals because they can harm themselves as well as other animals if they get past it," Weber said.

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