Faithful Andie, Traumatized, Recovering from Wounds.
Richard Draper, who is legally blind, was peacefully walking with his constant companion and service dog, Andie, a female Lab, when three dogs described as Pit Bulls ran out of a nearby garage and viciously attacked the dog. Andie was defenseless despite Draper’s attempts to stop the other dogs.
Miami Herald, Florida, reports…
Richard Draper described the horrific incident from his living room two days later beside his wife, Sonia Draper. Andie, who was given to Draper 2 1/2 years ago by the nonprofit organization Southeastern Guide Dogs, suffered puncture wounds in the attack.
Head resting on her paws, Andie lay peacefully by Draper’s feet. Her future as a guide dog is now uncertain, and only time will tell whether she will be able to work again.
“I’ve been lost,” Draper said about no longer having his “eyes” with him. “Andie is like my radar.”
According to a Manatee County Animal Services activity card, two dogs came out of Manuel Welborn’s garage and went after Andie.
“I’m trying to kick this dog and I’m trying to kick at it and he keeps lunging at Andie,” Draper said. “I’m kicking and then another dog grabbed my leg.”
Robert Hodgin, who lives in the neighborhood, was walking his golden retriever when he heard the commotion between Draper, Andie, and three dogs he described as pitbulls.
“One dog grabbed his pants, the other grabbed his dog in the throat and the other was snapping at him,” Hodgin said.
The 71-year-old said he jumped in to give Draper some relief. “It was so quick. You don’t know whether you should have been involved or not, but I felt sorry for him,” Hodgin said. “I didn’t want my dog to be attacked, but I ran up there anyway and got in the middle.”
One of the dogs finally let go after he kicked it in the side several times, Hodgin said.
Welborn, the owner of the dogs, then came out, according to Hodgin. “He’s giving us heck for being mean to his dog,” Hodgin said. “They were like wolves. Once they got a hold of him, they wouldn’t let go.”