Coaling Woman Recovers from Vicious Dog Attack Behind Local Church

by Lisa

Coaling, Ala. (WBRC) – In a harrowing incident that transpired this past Sunday afternoon behind a church in Coaling, a woman identified as Michele Battles is on the path to recovery after a brutal dog attack. Fortunately, she is expected to fully recuperate from the ordeal, which left her with a deep gash below her right eye, scratches above the same eye, and a cut on her lips.

The incident unfolded around 12:15 on Sunday afternoon, following the morning church service. Battles recounted encountering a homeless man accompanied by his teen daughter and their 40-pound border collie, which was tethered in the vicinity.


Feeling compelled by a sense of goodwill, Battles decided to provide food for the homeless family and their canine companion. Despite initial reservations due to the dog’s occasional growls, Battles proceeded to purchase food, including provisions for the dog, from a nearby store.


“I was kind of leery because he had them tied up over there; he did growl. He was running around playing,” explained Battles.


As the man and his daughter gathered the food, Battles observed the dog’s seemingly friendly demeanor while it ate the offered provisions on the ground. However, the situation took a dire turn when, as Battles was feeding the dog, it suddenly attacked.


“He lunged on me and had my face for a snack,” Battles recounted.

The aftermath required Battles to undergo several stitches and receive multiple rabies shots, despite her belief that the dog was not rabid.

“I had to take 6 yesterday and have to go back Wednesday and take some more,” she disclosed.

Despite the shock and physical trauma, Battles expressed surprise that it was a border collie that instigated the attack. A fellow parishioner, who witnessed the incident, promptly transported Battles to DCH in Tuscaloosa for medical treatment.

While Battles is on the path to recovery, she has opted not to press charges against the homeless family, citing their precarious living situation. Additionally, she has no information about their current whereabouts, including that of the dog.

“There is no anger. The shock has worn off. Michele Battles is on the mend,” the report concluded. Battles is expected to make a complete recovery from her injuries, with no apparent impact on the vision in her right eye.


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