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Women killed by Her Own Dogs

Two pit bulls have mauled their owner to death in Virginia, USA. Bethany Stephens had doted on her dogs but had been forced to move out of her home following her divorce. The dogs had been staying at her father’s house where they were kept outside and became isolated. Bethany’s father hadn’t thought that it was his responsibility to look after the dogs and so they had not always been fed. The dogs were severely affected by their ordeal.

Two Little Princes

Tonka and Pac-Man had been treated like little princes by 22-year-old Bethany until she went through her divorce. Both dogs then ended up living in a cage outside at her and only enjoyed human interaction when Bethany visited them roughly 5 times each week. The dogs were being neglected and they turned.

Tragic Final Walk

Bethany always walked the dogs when she visited them but on the final walk things took a tragic turn. Bethany’s body was found in the woods after she had gone missing. Rumours had spread that she had been killed by a bear or coyote but the police have stated that it was clear that the dogs had killed her. The medical examiner has said that Bethany’s injuries could not have been caused by a large animal. But the rumours persist.

Continuing Investigation

The police are continuing to investigate and are carrying out further forensic tests but they are sure that Bethany was killed by her dogs and no humans were involved in her demise. Her friends are not so sure and don’t believe that the dogs would have harmed her. The dogs used to sleep with her and appeared to dote on their owner. But the fact of the matter is that that the dogs were with her and her injuries appeared to have been caused by animals.

Dogs Captured by Police

Police were able to capture the dogs at the scene but the animals have since been euthanized, with the family's consent. The dogs had tasted human flesh and so would not be safe around people in the future.

High-Energy Dogs

Pitbulls are high-energy dogs and require plenty of exercise and a lot of structure in their lives. When they were kept in the cage, their energy was building up and they eventually became aggressive. Sadly, extreme lifestyle changes can be enough to cause drastic temperament changes in dogs. Experts have said that the dogs were probably feeling traumatised by being confined to the cage and then became excited on their walk. The surge of excitement sent them over the top and into aggression.

From Puppies to Killers

Bethany had taken in the dogs when they were puppies and treated them like members of the family until her divorce caused the dramatic change in circumstances. The dogs simply couldn’t cope mentally with being confined and isolated and the result was the terrible tragedy which unfolded on the walk.


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