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Midtown neighborhood on alert after dog bites

Posted at 4:35 PM, Mar 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-21 21:24:56-04
Alexandria Richardson has lived in her midtown home for more than 40 years. Last Wednesday while in her back alley, the 82-year-old woman says three dogs came out of nowhere.
 
"I turn around, it's three dogs surrounding me, had me cornered," she said. She says one of the dogs bit her on the left leg, leaving cuts and bruises. 
 
Now she says, she's nervous to even walk out her back gate. 
 
"I'm kinda scared, you know uneasy about throwing my trash there," she said. "I know they're gone but that wasn't the first time they were loose."
 
The three dogs were taken by Pima Animal Care and quarantined. According to the president of the Palo Verde Neighborhood Association, last Wednesday's incident is one of six times in as many months where loose dogs have either bit a person or another dog within the neighborhood. 
 
Tucson police confirmed the incident with Richardson and one other incident that happened March 10 in the 3500 block of E. Fairmount. In that case, two loose dogs attacked two other dogs on a walk.
 
It's gotten to the point where some neighbors are just avoiding entire streets for fear of loose dogs. 
 
"It's sad in the fact that people are going out and they're walking and they can't feel comfortable or they can't feel safe," said Ronni Kotwica, president of the Palo Verde Neighborhood Association.
 
Within the City of Tucson, dogs must be kept on a leash when outside a property. The city also has an aggressive dog ordinance and owners can be cited. 
 
All the Palo Verde neighborhood asks now is that pet owners start taking more responsibility. 
 
"It is an issue and ultimately it can become a tragic occurrence and we just don't want that to happen," said Kotwica.