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October 27, 2010

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Tibetan Mastiff attacks 10 in Minhang

TEN people are receiving medical treatment to prevent rabies after they were bitten by a Tibetan Mastiff on Monday evening in Minhang District, a local disease control official said yesterday.

All the victims suffered third-degree bites, the most severe, and were in stable condition after receiving rabies and serum injections, the district's disease control and prevention center said yesterday.

Each victim will receive four more shots in the next 28 days and will be monitored carefully by the center, said Zhang Liping, a doctor there.

The dog has been locked up and will be kept under observation for two weeks, the doctor said.

According to the city's laws, it will be killed if it has rabies.

Minhang police were still looking for the owner of the dog yesterday.

The attacks happened about 7:30pm on Monday at the intersection of Beisong Highway and Humin Road in Minhang. The dog rushed on to the street and attacked passers-by.

Police used five cars in their efforts to catch the mastiff.

Since the dog's owner hasn't been found, compensation for the victims remains unresolved. According to the law, pet owners are responsible for injuries or damage caused by their animals, lawyer Liu Chunquan said yesterday.

Tibetan Mastiffs are renowned as fearsome guard dogs and revered by some as "the sacred dog of the East."

They can reach up to 86 kilograms fully grown and are known as highly intelligent working dogs, especially for herding sheep and yaks. But they need human companionship.

Cases of people being attacked by fierce or large dogs have been frequent over the years in Shanghai, raising concern among locals.

Legislators are in the process of revising dog laws and are considering banning fierce species from being raised in homes.


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