Las Vegas Sun

April 24, 2015

Currently: 76° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

Animal activists seek better treatment for dog that killed Henderson baby

Dog attacks, kills infant

KSNV coverage of fatal dog attack and interview with grief-stricken father, April 28, 2012.

Supporters for the dog awaiting its fate in the killing of a 1-year-old boy spoke Tuesday in defense of the animal's rights, urging the Henderson City Council at the bimonthly meeting to allow the dog exercise.

Gina Greisen, president of Nevada Voters for Animals, claimed the dog hasn’t had any human contact or a chance to go outside in the year it has been locked in the Henderson animal control center.

“This is wrong,” she said. “I implore the City Council to allow the dog some exercise while he awaits his fate. I know this is a heated legal battle, but please, think of the dog.”

Henderson Police spokesman Keith Paul said the dog has had regular human contact through veterinarian appointments and other basic care. Paul would not say if the dog had been allowed outside because the case is still pending in the Nevada Supreme Court.

Onion, a mastiff/Rhodesian ridgeback, was turned over to Henderson animal control officers by its owner, Elizabeth Keller, on April 27, 2012, after the dog attacked her grandson, Jeremiah Eskew-Skahan, who was at her home to celebrate his first birthday.

The boy reportedly crawled to the dog and pulled on Onion's fur to stand up, police said. The dog grabbed the boy by his face and began shaking him, police said. The boy died at University Medical Center.

After the tragedy, the city was expected to euthanize Onion, in accordance with its vicious dog ordinance. But a group called the Lexus Project intervened.

The Oceanside, N.Y., nonprofit organization has offered to provide funds to place and care for the dog in an animal sanctuary outside Denver. Lexus filed a motion for a temporary restraining order in Clark County District Court to stop the city from euthanizing the animal.

Greisen said she hasn’t taken a stance as to whether the dog should be euthanized or not, she just wants the animal to have humane treatment.

“This is inhumane and cruel,” she said. “There is absolutely no reason they can’t get one of their trained professionals to take this dog for a walk.”

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 2 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. Chunky says:

    It is inhumane for this animal to be kept confined like this. Not much more inhumane though than irresponsible pet owners who buy large breeds that need extensive room and exercise yet they keep them locked up in the house most of the day or on a small suburban lot. Then they wonder why the animal has behavioral and health problems. These large animals need ACRES not a 1800 sq ft yard.

    As for this instance, this dog should have been put down immediately not imprisoned.

    Too many people out there don't have their own insurance or emergency savings in the bank, are knee deep in debt, eat horribly and yet they'll spend $10's of thousands on an animal. Yea, animals are loved one's too and deserve humane treatment but for gosh sake take care of yourself and your human family first.

    That's what Chunky thinks!

  2. Unbelievable that this is still ongoing! Dolts.