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Dog declared 'potentially dangerous' after bite

A 1-1/2-year-old female Rottweiler-pit bull mix that was part of a group of four dogs that attacked a man walking home from Cub Foods in May has been declared "potentially dangerous" by the Rochester City Council.

The incident took place in the 1000 block of 15th Avenue Southeast on the evening of May 17.

According to reports, Dennis Zacharkow was walking home from the grocery store with a bag of bananas when the dogs, who had come out of the front door of a house, charged him, barking.

Zacharkow said he was bitten twice, on the left forearm and the back of his right leg. He received antibiotic treatments for his injuries, which included six puncture wounds, but did not have to go through a course of rabies treatment.

Alexandria Lindstrom, who owns the dog that was the subject of Wednesday's hearing, named "Shades," said her dog was not previously aggressive, and did not deserve the "potentially dangerous" designation, which requires that her yard be enclosed, that she post a $300,000 surety bond or certificate of liability insurance, and that the dog be muzzled when outside its regular enclosure.

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She claimed that Zacharkow provoked the attack by swinging his grocery bag. Zacharkow said he simply held the bag up and swung it around to protect himself from the group of dogs after they'd confronted him.

Another dog from the attack, a 1-1/2-year-old female Rottweiler-pit bull mix named "Karma," owned by Michael Wilkes, also stands to receive the "potentially dangerous" label. That dog will be the subject of a future council hearing.

Two other dogs involved, a 6-year-old female and 10-year-old female, both Rottweiler-pit bill mixes, were not determined to be aggressive dogs. Zacharkow was unable to say which dog or dogs bit him, so the dogs' demeanors were evaluated several days after the attack by a community service officer. Karma and Shades were both aggressive toward her, while the others were not, the officer said.

Dogs that bite a human or another pet, or charge a person on the street or sidewalk in an "apparent attitude of attack," stand to receive the "potentially dangerous" designation under city ordinance.

The council vote was 7-0.

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