Police said a woman was killed by her own dog in Rocky View County, Alta., Saturday evening.
RCMP said the boxer-pitbull cross initially attacked a toddler, leaving her with serious but not life-threatening injuries, before turning on the woman.
Police were not able to confirm the relationship between the woman and the toddler, and they have yet to release the woman’s name.
The attack happened shortly after 6 p.m.
RCMP initially reported the woman’s age as 49 and the toddler’s age as three, but EMS later clarified the woman was 50 and the child two and a half.
Police said the deceased was the dog’s owner, and the attack happened in her home near the hamlet of Langdon.
A sign outside the gates of the home where a neighbour said the attack took place warned of guard dogs on duty.
The woman was pronounced dead at the scene, and the toddler was transported to the Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary.
Dog will be quarantined, then likely put down
Investigators say the dog, along with one other in the residence, has been quarantined in Calgary and will be monitored.
“With any dog bite in Alberta if the dog isn’t euthanized right away, typically the dog will be quarantined … and that’s to monitor the dog for afflictions such as rabies,” said Staff Sgt. John Spaans.
“In this case, just for the benefit of the surviving victim, it’s best to be monitored to see if they had potentially been infected.”
Spaans said after the monitoring period is over following a dog attack, it’s either up to the dog’s owner — in this case the victim’s family — to have the dog euthanized, or police can apply through the court system to have the dog declared dangerous so it can then be put down.
But it’s not automatically euthanized, even in a situation where the dog has killed someone.
“It’s not a guarantee the courts will authorize the destruction,” said Spaans.
“If family is able to show that safety measures have been put in place and no future attacks would happen, the person could still in theory keep the dog.”
Witnesses reported to police that the dog had not shown previous signs of aggression and was otherwise well-behaved.
Police said investigators were no longer on scene at the home Sunday morning.
Langdon is about 36 kilometres east of Calgary.
With files from Anis Heydari, The Canadian Press
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Sherwood Park is a large hamlet in Alberta, Canada within Strathcona County that is recognized as an urban service area. It is located adjacent to the City of Edmonton’s eastern boundary, generally south of Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail), west of Highway 21 and north of Highway 630 (Wye Road). Other portions of Sherwood Park extend beyond Yellowhead Trail and Wye Road, while Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) separates Refinery Row to the west from the balance of the hamlet to the east.
Sherwood Park was established in 1955 on farmland of the Smeltzer family, east of Edmonton. With a population of 70,618 in 2016, Sherwood Park has enough people to be Alberta’s seventh largest city, but technically retains the status of a hamlet. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Sherwood Park Urban Service Area as equivalent to a city.
Sherwood Park, originally named Campbelltown, was founded by John Hook Campbell and John Mitchell in 1953 when the Municipal District of Strathcona No. 83 approved their proposed development of a bedroom community east of Edmonton. The first homes within the community were marketed to the public in 1955. Canada Post intervened on the name of Campbelltown due to the existence of several other communities in Canada within the same name, so the community’s name was changed to Sherwood Park in 1956.
The Sherwood Park Urban Service Area is located in the Edmonton Capital Region along the western edge of central Strathcona County adjacent to the City of Edmonton. The majority of the community is bound by Highway 16 (Yellowhead Highway) to the north, Highway 21 to the east, Highway 630 (Wye Road) to the south, and Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) to the west. The Refinery Row portion of Sherwood Park is located across Anthony Henday Drive to the west, between Sherwood Park Freeway and Highway 16. Numerous developments fronting the south side of Wye Road, including Wye Gardens, Wye Crossing, Salisbury Village and the Estates of Sherwood Park, are also within the community. Lands north of Highway 16 and south of Township Road 534/Oldman Creek between Range Road 232 (Sherwood Drive) to the west and Highway 21 to the east are also within the Sherwood Park urban service area.