Lucky escape

Pensioner recalls vicious attack by Akitas

One day after pit bull owner Peter Christopher Rock of Monroe Road, Haggatt Hall, St Michael was released on $65,000 bail in connection with the unlawful death of 74-year-old Verona Gibson who was mauled by his dogs on January 28, a victim of a different dog attack is sharing his harrowing experience.

Sixty-five-year-old Lloyd Springer of Ruby Park, St Philip survived the vicious attack by two Akitas on the morning of Wednesday May 24, but not without serious physical and emotional scars and a massive medical bill, which continues to rise.

Springer was on his way to train for the Run Barbados half marathon when the animals, thirsty for blood, launched their attack on him at Newcastle in St John.

Sixty-five-year-old Lloyd Springer is lucky to be alive after a horrific dog attack on May 24th.

“I would normally park my car at the bottom of the hills in St John, walk down the hills and run up. The incident occurred around 6:50 a.m. I walked down to the fishing area and drank some water and I was running up as fast as I could. All of a sudden, like in the middle of the hill, I glanced to my right and saw two dogs right on me. They knocked me to the ground and I was more or less fighting for my life,” he told Barbados TODAY.

“The dogs were just biting at my foot, and I was kicking and screaming [and] there was a neighbour who was in her patio screaming as well, but to no avail.”

Throughout the ordeal, Springer said, his life flashed before his eyes and he thought of Gibson, who just four months earlier, had lost her life to a pack of dogs.

Unable to fight off the savagerous attack, he had all but resigned himself to the same fate when two people came by in a vehicle and “saved me from further injury, and perhaps death.

“I was thinking about using the foot initially, about death, especially with the woman who was killed by a pack of dogs in January this year; so that really flashed cross my mind. It was traumatic and terrifying. Apart from the physical pain and having to relive that, it’s like it’s happening again,” he explained.

“I could not help myself, I could not get the dogs off of me, but they managed to chase the dogs off.

“I was trembling and I couldn’t put any weight on the foot. It was bleeding profusely. The passengers in the vehicle wrapped it in a t-shirt and I was then sitting in the back of the vehicle, but when I tried to put weight on the foot I was going to the ground.”

Springer told Barbados TODAY while he might have escaped death, his nightmares are far from over.

His wife suffered a stroke back in 2011 and three years later he retired from work in order to dedicate his time to assisting her.

With nary an income, he now has to meet medical bills that continue to increase as a result of his injuries.

“I sustained multiple injuries and in terms of medical issues that are ongoing. There is a nurse that comes to my home. Initially it was everyday but the foot is healing now. Thank God I’m not diabetic.

“The medical cost, right now it may be premature to determine that, but I have visited the doctor . . . I couldn’t be walking, I had to have the foot elevated and seeing it is my right foot I couldn’t be driving or putting any pressure.

“Not being able to drive myself I had to be driven. In terms of doing duties, chores, it would be very uncomfortable. Having to take a bath without getting the foot wet and thinking about how I would be helping others and now I had to be helped.

“I was angry and frustrated because I was not able to finish my run that morning. And then not being able to train for a number of weeks my health suffered a setback. I used to go to the sea every day, I haven’t been to the sea since that morning.”

Springer plans to resume training in two weeks, but he is fearful he might not feel comfortable taking to the road again.

“I was told that there are persons who would have stopped exercising because of the woman being killed; people walking with umbrellas trying to protect themselves, but you can’t run with an umbrella,” he said.

The attack on Gibson in January had led to public outcry, with many calling for a ban of certain breeds of dogs such as Akitas and pit bulls – the latter has developed a bad reputation, and while figures are not available here on the number of deaths from dog attacks, between 2005 and 2015 pit bulls were responsible for 64 per cent of all canine deaths in the United States.

Springer supports calls for tighter legislation to control dangerous dogs “because Barbados needs to be safer.

“I won’t want anyone else to experience what I went through,” he said.

The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention does not list Akitas among the most likely to attack humans, but says their sheer size and power means that whenever they attack, there are likely to cause serious injury.

Source: (AGB)

15 Responses to Lucky escape

  1. Ronald Callender June 21, 2017 at 2:56 am

    I’m sorry to hear what happened to Mr. Springer and the others who were injured and traumatized or killed by vicious dogs.

    In many cases, dogs reflect the temperament of their owners.

    After reading the article by Anmar Goodridge-Boyce, it appears that everyone is betwixt and between as to how to deal with the problem of vicious dogs.

    In your effort to find a solution, I pray you hold in your mind that people come before animals, including vicious dogs. What’s one man “pet” or guard dog is another man’s horror, including a death sentence or rapid deterioration in health after a dog attack.

    I offer the below links for articles about dog attacks in my neck of the woods as food for thought.

    Bare in mind, the sooner all concerned find a solution, the more dog-attack injuries you’ll prevent.

    You might very well safeguard your own health or that of a loved one.

    If you do nothing, one day, you may have to admit to yourself or others that had you done something or something sooner, someone would be alive today or not be suffering.

  2. jrsmith June 21, 2017 at 4:14 am

    Whats all this talk talk , who the hell are the owners of the dogs that mauled him , fine that out and take the owner to courts, What people need to do in barbados stop shooting each other and shot the vicious dogs instead ………………….
    Its sad he cant even get his MP involve with this matter, because its black on black I bet you……………………………………….

  3. Joy June 21, 2017 at 6:54 am

    The issue needs to be addressed but jrsmith not everything is about race or politics. It wasn’t even black on black. It was animal on human. People need to comply with the existing law and secure their animals in the interest of public safety.

    • VoR June 21, 2017 at 2:32 pm

      Thank you for stating this. The guy is obsessed with race. He makes everything about race.

  4. tsquires June 21, 2017 at 8:41 am

    The major problem with Akitas being kept as pets, is their reaction to warm or hot weather, they are really cold climate animals, and the tropical climate can contribute to making them aggressive, so pet owners and the public should be aware of this problem. The uneducated owners are the problem not the dogs!

  5. Joy June 21, 2017 at 9:01 am

    This is ridiculous now. Something has to be done about dog owners who refuse to securely put these animals away on their property so that citizens can go about their lives with a mind of ease, whether it is take an early morning trip to clean a church or an early morning exercise.

    Must more people die before this issue is taken seriously. If you cannot adequately take care of the dogs do not have them.

  6. Williams June 21, 2017 at 9:10 am

    Please find the owner and make them pay for all your expenses. Bring down the law on them because this can happen to someone else.

  7. joan Worrell June 21, 2017 at 9:26 am

    1 tin of sardines and a teaspoonful of slugit or slugfest protects you from dogs attacking you.

  8. Milli Watt June 21, 2017 at 3:23 pm

    another one……………cha den open season on seniors in this place. youngsters ain’t got no respect and de dogs ain’t got none

  9. JM June 21, 2017 at 3:52 pm

    @tsquires….clearly you know nothing about Akitas or very little about dogs for that matter. Do your research and you will note that dogs are capable of adjusting to varying temperatures. In addition any dog can bite and cause injury and it is possible for any dog to be listed as aggressive purely because of its behavior and not because of the breed.
    @ joan Worrell….c’mon you are better than that.
    My sympathy to Mr.Springer.

  10. JM June 21, 2017 at 4:10 pm

    @jrsmith…… is noteworthy that you remain stuck at your ‘1%’ level of common sense. Sad indeed.

  11. JM June 21, 2017 at 6:57 pm

    BT……..” when the animals,thirsty for blood,launched their attack on him……” How did your reporter know these dogs were ‘thirsty for blood’? Is this ‘news you can trust ‘? Just curious.

  12. gsmiley June 21, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    JM I think you know that they have to make the story intriguing too.
    They are not going to say that the pack of dogs trotted up to the gentle man and bit him on his foot.

    Who is going to read that?

    Blood thirsty animals savagely attacked an elderly gentleman. Now that will sell. And there goes it.


  13. ILL Blaze June 22, 2017 at 12:33 am

    I once used to look after my cousin’s dogs he had akitas and pit bulls but these pit bulls were not aggressive towards people matter of fact they were more playful when i first met them, the problem is people breed these dogs to fight so that is where the aggression comes from i only came across a problem with those dogs after the females got pups they started fighting each other which i found strange but the female akita was naturally aggresive but only after eating food she would let you feed her but you can’t go near her while she is eating she gets very teritorial but otherwise than that she was a very quiet dog but overly protective for her pups.

  14. Brewster June 22, 2017 at 11:07 am

    Barbados is slack on just about everything at the moment. Until there are more deaths nothing will be done.Sad and unnecessary situation for all. Just waiting for a tourist to be attacked then you’ll see the difference. What happened to securing dogs on their property? What happened to being able to walk the street freely?


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *