PIT BULL ATTACK
A man found dead outside his home early Wednesday morning was the victim of a vicious attack by his own dog, local authorities confirmed.

Following a 911 call from a female at Evergreen Drive at 7:20 a.m. July 3, 2024, the Arkadelphia Police Department, along with ambulance personnel, responded and discovered the body of a 41-year-old deceased male laying in the driveway.

"The deceased victim was determined to have been attacked during the night," APD said in a press release. The canine was identified as a Bully XL, a variant of pit bull bred for a size larger than its well known counterpart.

Police did not release the name of the deceased by Wednesday afternoon. Public real estate records show that the home where police responded belongs to Johnny and Amber Fontenot.

The dog was kept inside the residence, where it was found when police arrived at the scene. The male dog had been neutered but was not registered with the city's Animal Control Department. Officials seized the dog at the scene and transported it to the city pound. Its vaccination records were confirmed to be up to date.

The dog was euthanized at the request of the family and pursuant to a court order. The Arkansas Department of Health was notified, and the incident does not meet statutory requirements for further testing of the animal, police said.

The dog was the only type of its kind the residents owned. There were no known incident reports or complaints regarding the dog, and no recent reports of any dog bites on Evergreen Drive.

The victim was transported to the state Crime Laboratory for an autopsy. The matter remains under investigation.

Dog attacks accounted for an average of 43 deaths per year in the U.S. between 2011-2021, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

About the Bully XL

The Bully XL is the largest of four varieties of the American Bully breed. The Bully XL emerged in the '80s and '90s as a product of breeders aiming for a larger Pitbull-type dog.

The Bully XL is a mixture of breeds including Pit Bulls, American Bulldogs and English bulldogs.

The United Kingdom banned the American Bully XL in early 2024 after numerous deadly attacks on humans. At least 23 fatalities — many involving American XL bullies — were reported in the U.K. since 2021, CBS News reported in February.

Pit bull ownership in Arkadelphia

Arkadelphia residents who own a dog of the pit bull breed are required by city code to register their dog with Animal Control.

Registration includes micro-chipping by a licensed veterinarian, proof of vaccinations, and spaying or neutering of the animal.

Other conditions of owning a pit bull within the city limits include confinement of the dog indoors or in an enclosed and locked pen that is secure both at the top and bottom. The breed must be leashed and muzzled while unconfined. Pit bull owners in Arkadelphia are also required to hold a $100,000 public liability insurance policy.