An animal rights activist was mauled to death in her Chicago home by at least one of her three dogs.
Lisa Urso, 52, died after being severely bitten on her arms, legs and torso in a gruesome attack. She managed to make it onto her back porch, where she was found dead by a friend on May 9.
It’s believed that Blue, the French bulldog mix she’d recently adopted, is responsible for the attack and he is scheduled to be put down.
‘You don’t really think about it happening with a smaller dog breed but we forget animals can be powerful,” Lake County Coroner Dr. Howard Cooper said, according to a Daily Mail article. “This animal has a lot of jaw strength.”
Urso’s body was found covered in injuries and most of her clothing had been shredded off, he said.
The dog was originally bred to fight and had badly bitten Urso’s boyfriend twice in April, after which the dog was taken to the Animal Care and Control Department and placed under a 10-day quarantine.
During that time the dog didn’t appear to be aggressive, according to Robin Van Sickle, the department’s program manager, and so Urso brought Blue back home.
“She loved that animal,” Cooper said, according to an article in People. “If she ever thought it would have attacked her, I’m sure she wouldn’t have wanted it back. Clearly she believed she was fine with him.”
A known dog-lover, Urso often raised money for organizations like the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
She also had another French bulldog and a border collie mix. According to the People article both bulldogs were found to have blood on them, but only Blue had a history of biting.
All of the dogs appeared to be well cared for, Van Sickle told People. “It was evident to us this was a very loving home, a very pet-friendly home.”
It is unclear why the attack occurred.
“There are so many circumstances that could be involved,” Fox Lake Police Cmdr. Dawn Deservi told People. “It’s definitely a tragic situation.”
An investigation into the incident, which includes looking into Blue’s history, is underway.
If a dog is designated as “dangerous” through an animal control agency investigation, then the owner has to pay a $70 fine, have the dog micro-chipped and spayed, or neutered, according to state of Illinois laws.
If a dog has been found to be “dangerous” on three occasions, it becomes classified as “vicious” and it’s illegal to keep such dogs, unless they are kept in an enclosure most of the time.
Frenchies are generally known to be good companions, but require “an adequate amount of training” to be civilized, according to the French Bulldog Club of America.
All three dogs are currently being cared for at a shelter. The two dogs, which haven’t shown signs of violence, will be offered to Urso’s family, or put up for adoption, according to a Chicago Tribune article.