FORT WORTH — Nancy Melenbacher and her beloved dog are recovering after coming face-to-face with four pit bulls in their far north Fort Worth residential neighborhood.
Melenbacher said she was walking her beagle pup, named PT, on a leash when the pit bulls broke through a window screen of their home in the 7100 block of Fire Hill Drive and began to attack.
"They were lunging at her throat; they were lunging at her chest, at her groin area... it's amazing that she's still alive," she said.
Melenbacher was bitten and scratched trying to get the dogs away from PT. "I was so terrified for her," she said, still covered in blood and punctured by dog bites. "It wasn't until later that I thought those dogs could turn on me; if they don't get what they want, they're going to turn on me."
Her screams got the attention of a neighbor who tried to help repel the attack. She was also badly bitten.
Melenbacher said PT finally sought shelter under a car. That's when one of the pit bull owners came to pull them away.
The other owner, Brandon Seifurt, soon arrived and surrendered the pit bulls to Fort Worth Animal Control for a rabies quarantine. His dogs appeared docile as they were loaded into the city truck.
Seifurt said the dogs have had their shots, but was unable to produce the documentation.
"My heart goes out to the family of the other dog," he said. "We are dog owners. We love our dogs very much. They are part of the family and it's the last thing that I would like to see happen to a neighbor."
PT was in surgery Thursday evening, but she is expected to survive.
Even though Seifurt's dogs were inside his home, the pit bull owner still faces thousands of dollars in citations. Animal Control says window screens do not provide the required protection against the escape of large and aggressive dogs.