The owner of a pitbull in southwest Houston has accrued
nearly $7,000 in fines for failing to surrender the dog for a 10-day
quarantine period and other animal-related citations.

The 10-day
period ends Wednesday, so it's no longer necessary for the owner to turn
in the dog, which allegedly bit a woman on May 29, said Christopher Newport, spokesman for Houston's Administration and Regulatory Affairs Department.

owner, however, is required to have the animal examined by a
veterinarian to confirm that the animal is not exhibiting rabies
symptoms, Newport said.

The attack reportedly happened in the 7900
block of Deer Meadow Drive, where a woman received a bite wound on her
hand and possibly one of her forearms, Newport said. No information was
available Wednesday on the woman's condition.

Since the dog owner refused to surrender the animal, the woman probably needed to get rabies shots, Newport said.

between her and her doctor," he said. "If you don't know if the animal
has signs of rabies, that's what you're left with."

It's unusual for dog owners not to produce their pets for quarantine after the animal has bitten someone, Newport said.

only heard of two of these (cases) where someone repeatedly refuses to
surrender the animal," he said. "Most people get one citation and say,
'OK, sorry.' "

For the initial refusal to surrender the animal for
quarantine and the subsequent failure to have the animal examined, the
owner has received daily citations with associated fines of $565 per

In addition, the owner also received citations for failure to
obtain current rabies vaccinations and pet licenses for four animals.

As of Wednesday, the fines for all citations totaled $6,850, Newport said.

owner has court dates for each citation, and the court will ultimately
determine how much he is required to pay, Newport said.

control officers explained to the owner that it was not necessary to
euthanize the animal but simply to quarantine it to see if it exhibited
rabies symptoms, he said.