by Sharon Niederman
RATON — Michael Brown, owner of the Raton Pass Motor Inn, was not prepared for what came at him while out for a bike ride May 7, 2021.
“I was heading home, pedaling uphill, when a large white dog lunged out from behind a bush,” he said. The dog, possibly a Great Pyrenees mix, bit Brown on the right hip. “The dog literally attacked me, leaving a two to three inch bite mark,” Brown said,
He managed to get home, where he called to report the incident, which occurred at 764 Nevada St. The Animal Control officer responded, and an ambulance arrived. After examining the wound, the EMT said Brown was in good enough shape to drive himself to the ER. There he was again examined and treated, and he received medical advice that risk of rabies was quite low.
For several days, there were attempts to deliver a citation to the owner, but officers were told the owner was not at home. Brown heard from Chief John Garcia, who explained there were few options. “He told me I couldn’t get a judge to get a warrant to seize the dog. Finally, an officer was able to deliver the owner a citation for “vicious animal at large.” According to recent revisions of the dog ordinance, the animal must be registered with the city annually as a vicious dog.
The officer met the dog and said it was a healthy, friendly animal.
Brown said it appears there are children living at this address, and said “the dog was obviously over protective. He just needs to be on a leash.”
Brown left Dallas and moved to Raton with his wife Brandy the first week of November, 2020. “It’s been great,” he says. “We love it, the entire area.” With travelers again on the road, he meets people from Colorado, Texas, and Oklahoma, as well as those on extended road trips, who come to stay at his motel. His wound has healed, and, as ten days have passed with no sign of rabies, his mind is at ease.