A 94-year-old Shawnee woman lost her thumb after a neighbor’s dog allegedly bit her hand in April.
Florence Manini said that on April 26, she attempted to measure the width of a gap in the shared fence between her back yard off of Northridge Road and a neighbor’s.
“They’re not going to fix that fence, I am,” Manini said. “I got a piece of board to see how much I would need, put my hand up to (the fence). (The dog) didn’t bark or nothing it just attacked me. Bit my thumb completely off.”
Manini was taken to a hospital and would later need multiple surgeries for treatment and a skin graph for the wound.
“I keep thanking God it was me, not my grandchildren, or some of the children who play out in the street. It could have been anybody,” she said.
Shawnee police and animal control responded to the home and spoke with the owners of the dog. Officers found that the dog bit Manini’s hand while on the owner’s property and did not open a criminal investigation.
“The dog in question remained on his property at the time of bite,” the SPD incident report stated. “We were unable to determine if the dog had infringed on Mrs. Manini's property at any time, or if the bite was provoked.”
A police spokesperson said officers told the dog owner that a city ordinance requires all vicious animals to be “kept upon private premises of” its caretaker, “and securely locked within a sufficient enclosure.” Otherwise, the animal is not allowed within city limits.
The dog owner did not respond to a request for comment.
Manini said she was only in her yard. “I wasn't over the fence,” she said.
Her family told News 9 the dog owner has not responded to calls from their insurance agent or an attorney.
Manini said she does not know how much she will have to pay out-of-pocket for the medical expenses.
“I’m thankful that it was nobody else,” she said.