The 52-year-old man was on a walk with his leashed Mastiff at about 10:30 a.m. on the 26000 block of Lehner Street when two dogs, a pit bull and a lab mix, escaped a nearby home's back yard, "squeezing themselves out between a gap in the fence," according to a news release from Roseville Police Department.
The Mastiff had numerous cuts to his face and head, but they don't appear to be life-threatening; the dog was taken to emergency veterinary care, the release said.
The Mastiff's owner, who was uninjured, is licensed to carry a concealed pistol, and the gun is registered to him. An investigation remains underway, police said.
Richard Krisciunas, a University of Detroit Mercy law professor and former assistant prosecutor, said deadly force as self-defense could probably be applied to this case similar to cases involving humans.
"A dog-on-dog crime -- I think it's certainly defensible," he said. "It would clearly depend on whether at the time that he that he fired the shot, he believed that the other dog was going to cause death to his dog, or serious bodily injury to his dog."
In a separate Roseville incident in May, a 52-year-old woman and her 51-year-old boyfriend were mauled by her son's pit bull, and multiple surgeries were needed to repair the boyfriend's arm.
Police used a Taser to incapacitate the 1-year-old pit bull, and it was later euthanized, police said.
(Detroit Free Press - July 10, 2017)