Friday, July 31, 2009

Neighbors sickened after dogs kill horse, owner kills dogs

By Carol Ferguson

WELDON, Calif. -- After a man's dogs attacked and killed a miniature horse, neighbors said they want animal control to remove the dogs.
It happened at Keith Irons' home in Weldon. He owned the horse that his dogs killed.

Irons said he's already killed some of his dogs, and he plans to get rid of most of the others.

Neighbors called the Eyewitness News tip line worried that the problem won't be taken care of. Kern County Animal Control gave Irons until Monday to reduce the number of dogs.

Animal control director Guy Shaw said two officers will be at Irons' house Tuesday to see what he's done.

The small horse was killed July 10....

...Irons said he will get rid of the dogs that still remained on the property Monday, except he wants to keep four to six of them. He said most of those are spayed or neutered.

Animal control said they want all the dogs gone.

"We want him to surrender all the animals that are left," Shaw said. He added it might be possible for Irons to keep dogs that have been spayed or neutered, but they really want him to give up all the animals.

Neighbors had also heard that Irons' dogs had recently injured his wife's leg, causing severe medical problems. Irons said his wife is paralyzed, and she did have an injury from a puppy. But that happened in the house wasn't an attack, he said.

"The injury that she had led to the discovery of a more serious injury that caused her leg to be amputated," Irons said. "Let's make that plain."

He described his wife's injury from the dogs as a "puppy abrasion."

Neighbors complain problems with Irons' dogs have gone on for years. Neighbor Pennay Johnson has jotted down the dates of more than 30 calls she's made to animal control since 2004 regarding dogs from Irons' place.

"They've come, dug under the fence and climbed over the fence into our property," Johnson said. "And they threatened us on our own property, on our own patio when were were just drinking our coffee."..."
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