Loving Family Dog Kills Baby: Could It Have Been An Accident?
This is as tragic as it gets – a two day old baby killed by the family’s seemingly friendly Husky –
According to one media report, a friend of the Alberta, Canada couple says the dog was probably trying to comfort the crying boy when it delivered one fatal bite to the child’s head.
Rob and Rhonda Fradette, and they seem to have done everything they were supposed to do when they brought their new baby home from the hospital last week, and they’re experienced dog owners.
They had locked the dog in its kennel in the basement and put their sleeping baby in his crib, Donald said. But somehow the dog escaped and went to investigate when the baby woke up crying. It was not a vicious attack, she said, and the same bite wouldn’t have killed an older child.
The 9-year-old female dog, a Siberian husky, Spot, had previously delivered four litters of its own puppies.
The RCMP will only say that their investigation revealed there was no negligence and there will be no criminal charges.
The baby was born on the night of Feb. 13 and was attacked on the morning of Feb. 15 at the couple’s house in Airdrie, a bedroom community just north of Calgary. He died 12 hours later at Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary.
The animal remains in quarantine. The Fradettes said they have been too busy mourning the loss of their child to discuss whether the dog should be destroyed. The animal had never been aggressive before and went through training and obedience classes.
The Fradette’s said they had even attended seminars by the Calgary Humane Society, including one on how to bring a new baby into a home with pets. Of course, though it was an unforeseen accident, the dog was able to be alone with the baby. And dogs (or any pet) should never be kept alone with a baby.
Darryl Poburan, manager of municipal enforcement in Airdrie, said the husky is being assessed by an animal behavior specialist.
If the family decides it doesn’t want the dog destroyed, the matter will be heard by a provincial court judge on March 15, he said.
For the Fradettes, dogs are their family and also their business. They run a home-based company called Urban Mushers that sells dog-sledding supplies. According to their website, they own four Siberian huskies named Spot, Siku, Ikkuma and Celine.
Rob Fradette is a competitive dog-sled racer. Neighbors said they often saw the family hook their dogs to a sled in front of the house to go for a ride. The couple also has a 2 1/2-year-old son. They have set up a memorial fund in the name of Baby Fradette. Donations will go to the Alberta Children’s Hospital.
“It is with broken hearts and many tears that this memorial fund has been created,” the family wrote on the hospital’s website.
I’ve not met the dog, so of course, I have no way to know…but I believe this dog was friendly, and didn’t mean to kill the baby. In a sense, this makes the entire story even more tragic.