During the last 10 days story about 3 bullmastiffs who killed their owner is one of the top news in Slovenia. First, it seemed to be story about crazy aggressive dogs who attacked without reason, but new proofs showed different story - disgusting story about bad owner, well-known and influential people, VIP friends etc… and poor dogs.
This text is written by Jean McCollister:
This is just a brief note to fill in my friends outside Slovenia, especially those of you with dogs, on some recent tragic events in Slovenia. The media here, and discussions on the dog forums, have been completely dominated by this story for the past ten days, and I?ve been following it closely. But so far very little has been reported outside the country (though I expect that will change soon). So here's a brief synopsis for you, in English:
Last Tuesday, February 2, three bullmastiff dogs turned on their owner, Sa?o Baričevič, and mauled him to death in his garage. At first there was a predictable hue and cry over the dangers that dogs pose to the public, in particular certain breeds (pitbull type, Rottweiler, bullmastiff, and so on), and a call for new and severely restrictive legislation affecting dog owners. TV news anchors delivered their reports against a backdrop of poster-sized head shots of slavering snarling beasts. People out walking their dogs, especially if the animals bore even a superficial resemblance to the breeds stigmatized, were accosted and scolded for posing a public menace. A worried coworker of a friend of mine expressed concern that the friend?s two dogs (an Australian shepherd and a border collie) might one day suddenly turn murderous, since it was well known from the bullmastiff incident that dogs in packs were liable to attack unprovoked. Two days later, as the anti-dog hysteria in Slovenia was reaching a pitch, two Rottweilers attacked and killed an elderly woman in neighboring Austria. Political parties in Parliament competed with one another to see who could introduce the most draconian laws on dog ownership. Strict limitations on the number of dogs one household can have, mandatory muzzling and leashing of all dogs at all times in public places, and a prohibition on walking more than one dog at a time were just some of the proposals we heard.
However, as new information came to light, the focus began to shift. These particular dogs?mother Joy and sons Atlas and Atos--had a well-documented history of aggression, and after a particularly brutal attack in 2006 on a passerby, Stanislav Meglič, in which the police had to intervene (a fourth dog, Knight, the father of Atlas and Atos, was shot and killed in the course of rescuing Meglič), they were impounded by the state and housed in the Gmajnice animal shelter in Ljubljana. Various experts recommended euthanasia but the owners were able to use their wealth, influence and, apparently, political connections to successfully appeal the case and gain stays of execution on multiple occasions. In 2009 the dogs were returned to live with the owner, Sa?o Baričevič (his partner and original owner of the dogs Zora Roter had died in the meantime). This outcome was reached despite the strenuous objections of experts consulted on the case, who considered the dogs a major hazard to public health and safety and incapable of being rehabilitated behaviorally. As a result the media began to shift their attention from the threat posed to the public by dangerous dogs to that posed to the rule of law by corrupt politicians. Because, it was argued by many, if the rule of law had been followed, the dogs would never have been returned to a situation in which they could cause harm.
As it unfolded, the story acquired increasingly interesting, tragic, and downright scandalous dimensions. Although high-level officials, in particular the Minister of Agriculture, Milan Pogačnik, and the head of the Veterinary Administration of the Republic of Slovenia, Vida Čadonič-?pelič, tried hard to hush the matter up, there were suggestions as early as last Friday, based on evidence at the scene of the crime and preliminary results of an autopsy on the dogs, that these bullmastiffs had been systematically sexually abused by their owner. Such ongoing abuse, if it were true, would account for the animals' unpredictable and vicious behavior (attacks date back to 2003 or even earlier in the case of Joy), and also help explain why the owner was willing to go to a great deal of effort and huge expense in order to get them back from the state and into the privacy of his home.
These suspicions were publicly confirmed Thursday evening (February 11) on national television. Baričevič at the time of his death was naked and in possession of a 30-cm strap-on dildo, and results of the autopsies on Joy, Atlas, and Atos show conclusively that they were brutally sodomized.
There is much more to be said on the subject and there are still many unanswered questions, but that?s the gist of what we know for now.
Knight, Joy, Atlas, and Atos: vicious killer dogs who caused much harm and pain to others over many years were themselves victims of unspeakable abuse and cruelty. R.I.P.
Autopsy was made and this are the results (note: don't read if you are too sensitive):
Atlas, six years
? Rectal and anal mucosa were significantly thickened
? In the final segment of rectum, near the anal opening, more dark red crescent-shaped lacerations were present
? Anal opening was 6 cm wide
? Epithelium was missing on parts of the rectal lining
Atos, six years
- In the initial part of rectal lining (rectal mucosa) five spindle-shaped lacerations (1 x 0,5 cm in size) with gray, thorn edges and 1 cm wide bleeding were found
- Anus orifice was partially open (1,5 cm)
- Epithelium was missing on parts of rectal lining on the transition from cutaneous anal mucosa to glandular rectal mucosa
- Acute bleedings were present in lamina propria
Joy, 10 years
- Rectal mucosa was mildly thickened and pink
- Longitudinally opened rectum was evenly wide (8,2 cm)
- Anus was 6,8 cm wide
- Surface epithelium was missing on the transition from intestinal to cutaneous mucosa