Bernie and Red Swank have two different routes they take daily when they walk their dogs, and at about 8:30 a.m. Sunday in the 200 block of Water Street, a German shepherd attacked Lex, their white 5-year-old lhasa apso.
Lex suffered bite wounds. Two were kept open in order to drain, said Bernie Swank, Danville’s mayor.
The shepherd, named Lady, had jumped a fence, Swank said.
At the time, they also were walking Allee, 8, their other lhasa apso, and their grandchildren’s dog.
“I tried to shove the dog from around us, but she came through us,” Bernie Swank said.
Red Swank grabbed Lady’s collar and lifted her in the air. By that time, the dog’s owner had come out and called the dog, the Swanks said. Red Swank told him to come over and get his dog.
The owner told Red Swank the dog had jumped the fence. Red Swank said he told him he needs to make the fence higher.
The Swanks called Dr. Ken Berg, who treated Lex on a day the Animal Care Center isn’t normally open.
“He’s sore and bruised and on painkillers,” Bernie Swank said.
The Swanks reported the incident to Danville Cpl. Jon Swank, who left a message with John Graham, state dog warden for Montour and Columbia counties. Graham is on vacation this week, and Ken Snyder is covering for him.
Snyder said he isn’t allowed to release information about the incident and that he would talk to Danville police.
“At this point, I want to see where he goes with this and then we will decide if we will take any kind of action,” Swank said.
Swank isn’t releasing the name of Lady’s owner until the investigation is completed.
The officer said he was sure the owner would pay for Lex’s medical expenses.
Meanwhile, the Swanks don’t plan to alter their dog-walking routes. Their early route involves Ferry, Water and Pine streets and back to their Mill Street home. Their later route takes them in a different direction.
“There are so many people who walk their dogs,” Red Swank said.
Bernie Swank added, “I’m afraid for children walking and strollers.”