'It happened so fast'
GLACE BAY — It took more than 200 stitches and emergency surgery to close a gash on Corry MacPhee-Morrison's right thigh after a recent bite from a pit bull.
© Sharon Montgomery-Dupe - Cape Breton Post
Corry MacPhee-Morrison, Glace Bay, shows the bite she received after being attacked by a pit bull on July 11, resulting in 200 stitches and emergency surgery to close the gash. MacPhee-Morrison said doctors told her the bite was life-threatening — about a millimetre from the artery next to her femur, which goes to the heart. She said she was told without medical attention that would have meant bleeding to death in about four minutes.
The bite occurred July 11 while the 36-year-old was visiting her brother's home on Fifth Street.
Since then, she said the dog owner, her brother's girlfriend, is refusing her requests to have the animal euthanized.
"They said I would not have survived if it had been millimetres more — would have bled out in four minutes," MacPhee-Morrison said while exiting the Glace Bay Hospital where she received followup treatment.
"It is still really bad, I'm not out of the woods yet. It's still infected."
The bite that was dangerously close to a major artery came while she was standing in her brother's home.
"When I come they put the dogs in a room because I'm just frightened of both male pit bulls," she said.
"My brother's dog was in his room and I thought her dog was in a bedroom or something and separated. It happened so fast. I just looked down and he was on my leg. I didn't feel anything. I think I just went into shock mode."
She remembers yelling for somebody to pull the dog off her leg and then seeing her brother trying to do just that.
"I was rushed right then by ambulance to regional hospital. I was in emergency surgery right then."
She was in hospital when she said police took statements that evening and disputes the dog owner's account that she was bitten while caught in the middle of a dogfight.
Officials from the SPCA visited her at home and MacPhee-Morrison said they had her complete a report on the incident.
"We are aware of the case and we are investigating with the support of the Cape Breton Regional Police," said Jeff Dursi, manager with the Nova Scotia SPCA, Cape Breton Branch.
"Where the bylaw applies, we will be there to apply it."
Dursi noted that he could say little more about the incident because it is an ongoing investigation.
Though she's reached out to police, MacPhee-Morrison has not yet pressed charges.
She'd prefer the owner put the dog down without outside involvement, but said if full charges are necessary she'll go through that process.
"I love animals, I really do and I'm not a cruel person, but that dog definitely needs to be put down."
She said she contacted media because she wants people to know that the dog is still alive.
"My whole life changed. I'm scared to even drive the car now. I just want people to know that this dog is still alive and outside all the time."