SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - It's been a slow and painful recovery for Betty Meitzler, 89. Two months ago she was attacked by her neighbor's pit bull, which has since been put down.
"He was pulling me along by all my hair up here," she said.
Meitzler received 16 stitches in her head, a dislocated shoulder, fluids drained from her arm, and now, she receives weekly visits from nurses and doctors.
Meitzler's son-in-law, Dale Segrest, said the medical bills are stacking up.
"I've contacted three to four lawyers, and all of them have pretty much have said the same thing. Basically, there's nothing you can do about it," he said.
Segrest said he feels let down by Seminole County.
"I really feel that there's something broken in the system, if the animal control can do what they did, if they can return a vicious dog," he said.
Segrest said the same dog attacked his wife in April, leaving her with scars on both arms and legs.
According to county records, animal services took the dog after that attack, but returned it to it's owner, Nancy Filiault, after she paid the county $500, registering it as a dangerous dog.
Segrest is calling for stricter enforcement of policies designed to protect neighbors from dangerous dogs.
"I really feel let down by the county, and want to do everything I can to make sure something changes," Segrest said.
The county told Local 6 the reason they didn't put the dog down the first time it attacked Segrest's wife is because her injuries were not "severe enough."
The county's definition of a "severe injury": any physical injury that results in broken bones, multiple bites, disfiguring lacerations, requiring sutures or reconstructive surgery.
Segrest said his wife had multiple bites and stitches. Meitzler says she's grateful to be alive.
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