Lawton woman, service dog attacked by raccoon in home

Updated: Mar. 31, 2017 at 5:16 PM CDT
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(Source KSWO)
(Source KSWO)
(Source KSWO)
(Source KSWO)

LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - A Lawton woman and her service dog are recovering after being attacked by a raccoon in their home.

There is a hole in the roof of the home that Melissa Curtis said a raccoon climbed into. She said it came across a spot where there was a water leak from this week's storms and Thursday morning, it fell through, landing on her bed.

"I heard a crash and the raccoon had fallen through the ceiling," Curtis said.

Curtis said her service dog Harley immediately ran into the room to investigate.

"I thought it was a squirrel because the squirrels have been living in the ceiling because of the holes in the roof," Curtis said. "I thought he was just getting a hold of a squirrel. I went in there and saw the tail and saw it was a raccoon and they were just tearing each other up."

Curtis suffers from multiple sclerosis and lives completely off social security disability insurance. She said breaking up the fight between the two was a tall task.

"I tried to break them apart and I couldn't so I ran outside and started screaming for anyone to come help," Curtis said.

That's when Curtis's neighbor ran in with a hammer, killing the raccoon. But it wasn't before the raccoon seriously injured Harley.

"My dog's face, he's torn up really bad. I'm scared he's going to die."

While trying to break up the fight, the raccoon bit Curtis on her hand.

"I'm very sore," Curtis said. "I had six shots up one arm and my first rabies shot. I got a list of where I have to go back and keep getting these shots until the 5th of May.

Curtis said she's feeling a little better, but as for her home, there's a lot of work ahead.

"My bedroom is torn up," Curtis said. "I can't use my bed because it's got blood all over it."

Lawton Neighborhood Services has stepped in to help by reaching out to several local organizations and businesses.

"They've volunteered to help her get food for both her and her pet because she can't take care of it. We're getting vet care for the animal because it was severely hurt in the affair. We're going to get her a new bed," said Lawton Neighborhood Services Supervisor Joshua Leach.

In the meantime, Curtis said her landlord simply covered the hole in her ceiling with plywood. She said she's not worried about her home right now, as she's just worried about her best friend Harley.

"He just needs help. I can go to the emergency room and get my help but nobody will help him. He's all I've got," Curtis said.

Curtis did get Harley a free trip to the vet Friday afternoon. While Curtis has started treatment for rabies, there is not yet confirmation that the raccoon actually had rabies. Its body has been sent to a state lab for testing to determine whether she will need to continue treatment.

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