December 5, 2018

KEY LARGO — The owner of a dog that attacked and disfigured a Miami Herald reporter is due in court next week after being cited for violating county animal ordinances.

Terry Wayne Moore, 45, of Key Largo, is accused of failing to restrain a fierce, vicious or dangerous animal, not having a valid Monroe County license for his dog and failing to neuter the dog, a 3-year-old presa canario, or Canary mastiff dog, named Diesel.

The dog attacked and mauled reporter David Goodhue, 45, nearly ripping off his nose, after Moore invited the journalist to visit Newport Boat Yard to write a story about the business’ lingering financial hardship caused by last year’s Hurricane Irma.

The dog stuck its head inside Goodhue’s open car door after the journalist arrived at Moore’s business on Tuesday, Nov. 27.

“He [Moore] insisted the dog was friendly,” Goodhue said. Moments later the dog attacked.

Goodhue, who previously served as editor of The Reporter newspaper in Tavernier, remained hospitalized Saturday after undergoing reconstructive surgery to repair the damage caused by the dog.

After biting someone, an animal must be quarantined for 10 days to ensure it doesn’t have rabies.

“If there’s a high risk of the animal running and taking off, or if it’s a more serious bite, then we mandate the animal be taken to a shelter or, in some cases, to a veterinarian’s office,” said Florida Animal Control Association President David Walesky.

“In Florida, we have a state law about serious animal bites, and in those cases, the sheriff’s office gets involved and the court system. Each situation is unique with many variables, but in some cases, the owners may surrender the animal.”

If a judge deems a dog dangerous, it must be neutered and wear a tag identifying it as a threat. The owner also must post warning signs around his or her property.

“The dog may not be loose in the fenced yard, even if it’s being supervised. If it’s off the property, it must be muzzled, at all time,” Walesky said.

Additional safety measures can be ordered.

Monroe County Judge Sharon Hamilton is to hear the matter on Tuesday, Dec. 11.

tjava@keysnews.com