A dog that was thrown from a second story window in Dollard-des-Ormeaux on Tuesday evening has survived.
The incident happened during a police operation on a quiet residential street.
According to Montreal police, a call was received around 6:45 about a man in distress at a home on the street, and that the man allegedly threatened occupants of the residence.
“So when police officers arrived they tried to communicate with the man but he refused to cooperate and to get out of the house,” explained police spokesperson Véronique Comtois.
Nassim, a man who lives on the street, told Global News that the man started throwing a number of items out the windows of the home.
“All the windows are all broken,” he said.
At some point during the back and forth with officers, the man, according to police, threw the dog from a second floor window. Emergency service workers managed to save the animal.
According to Comtois, the dog was taken to a vet and will be returned to the family after it recovers. She said the man was finally arrested and taken to hospital, and that he’s facing several charges including uttering threats and causing an injury to an animal.
Nassim, who recorded a video of parts of the incident, said he was disturbed by the turn of events and that a dog was hurt.
“We were very concerned,” he said. “We weren’t getting too much information.”
Victoria Kuczynski, a counselor who works with Friends of Mental Health, a West Island non-profit group that helps families struggling with mental health, pointed out that calls like this are unpredictable.
“You have to be prepared for pretty much any avenue as you don’t know what you’re going to come across,” she said during an interview.
Kuczynski underscored how communication is key to helping de-escalate a situation, but admitted that even then, things can happen unexpectedly.
She also cautioned against stigmatizing someone, especially in this case in which a pet was injured.
“They’re going to be seen through the actions that saw the dog coming out of that window,” she noted, “and unfortunately that’s where most of the work needs to be done to see the person as a human being who’s gone through a crisis.”
Educating ourselves about mental health, she stressed, is key.
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