Even if there are a few scrapes between them, John Reynolds insist his dogs are friendly. All 17 of them. All pit bulls.
Williamsburg, MO (KSDK) -- Even if there are a few scrapes between them, John Reynolds insists his dogs are friendly. All 17 of them. All pit bulls.
"They were like best buddies," Reynolds says of his father the 84-year-old Rev. John Reynolds and one of the pit bulls. "My dad would sit there and feed him off his spoon. They slept together."
Reynolds says no one knew his dogs' nature more than his father who owned the home and property where John raises the dogs.
The Pit Bulls - See photos here
Which makes what he found on Wednesday night, October 13th, even harder to understand.
"I could see that he'd been attacked by something," Reynolds recalls.
He came home that night and found his father on the ground in the pen with severe bite marks. He did not survive the attack.
The sheriff's department says the dogs were on the loose but, with the exception of one dog who was wounded, showed few signs of an attack given the severity of Rev. Reynolds' injuries.
"They think that my dad might have been out here and they might have been playing or rough-housing and it got out of control," Reynolds says of his conversations with investigators. "But I just can't, I don't believe it."
He admits it's only speculation, but Reynolds believes stray dogs or possibly even a mountain lion may have attacked his father and his pit bulls.
While extremely rare, the Sheriff says deputies have taken reports on, and had sightings of, mountain lions in Callaway County. The official report on Rev. Reynolds' death only says his injuries were consistent with an animal attack.
"I know that there [are] a lot of people out there that are dead set against pit bulls and I'm sure they're going to try to use this to get their point across," says Reynolds, defending his dogs. "I know he wouldn't like it," he says of his late father.
The investigation is ongoing, but the Sheriff says there won't be any charges since the property owner has passed away. The dogs won't be seized because the county doesn't have the resources to handle that many dogs.
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