Baltimore woman, 56, dies after pit bull attack

A wheelchair-bound woman died after being attacked by her own pit bull dog early Friday, Baltimore City police and the victim's daughter said.

Terry Douglass, 56, suffered fatal injuries after "Boosie," the four-year-old male pit bull that she had raised from puppyhood, attacked her around 12:45 a.m., according to her daughter, Tamathia Davis.

"She loved that dog unconditionally," said Davis, who said this was the third time the dog had attacked her mother.

Douglass, of the 2000 block of E. 30th St. in the Coldstream Homestead Montebello neighborhood, had cerebral palsy and had been using a wheelchair for the past two years due to knee and back problems.

Although Douglass hadn't previously been a dog lover, she quickly grew attached to Boosie, Davis said.

"My mom had gotten to point in her life when she felt like her kids didn't need her any more, and she latched onto this dog," Davis said.

Davis said the dog first attacked her mother about two years ago, biting her face so savagely that "whenever my mom would open her mouth, her cheek would open with it."

The dog attacked again last year, biting both Douglass and one of her sons, Davis said.

Davis said that a city shelter placed the dog in quarantine after that but allowed the dog to return to home to Douglass, despite pleas from Davis and other relatives.

In the most recent attack, Davis said her stepfather was home but couldn't stop the attack. He tried unsuccessfully to revive her with CPR, she said.

The family does not know how to pay for the funeral, Davis said, because Douglass had been unable to keep up with payments on her life insurance policy.

Davis said she hoped that people would not judge all pit bulls as a result of this attack.

"I don't hate all pit bulls because not all pit bulls are bad," she said.

Still, she could not explain why the dog would turn on the woman who had raised it with tenderness.

"I know that my mother has been nothing but good to this dog," she said. "My mom loved this dog so much, this dog would sleep in the bed with her."

Baltimore Sun reporters Scott Calvert and Justin Fenton contributed to this article.

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