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Rescue group sued by wife of Fort Lauderdale woman killed in dog attack

Sun Sentinel logoSun Sentinel 11/30/2022 Susannah Bryan, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Broward sheriff's deputies surround 100+ Abandoned Dogs of Everglades Florida in Oakland Park after Pamela Robb was attacked and killed by a dog. Robb's wife is now suing the rescue group. © Joe Cavaretta/South Florida Sun-Sentinel/TNS Broward sheriff's deputies surround 100+ Abandoned Dogs of Everglades Florida in Oakland Park after Pamela Robb was attacked and killed by a dog. Robb's wife is now suing the rescue group.

Pamela Robb bled to death. Her killer: A pit bull-Cane Corso mix she thought was finally warming up to her.

And now the wife Robb left behind is suing the rescue group over mistakes she claims led to the fatal attack.

Robb, a longtime volunteer with the rescue group 100+ Abandoned Dogs of Everglades Florida, had no idea the dog was dangerous enough to attack and kill one of her kind-hearted helpers, according to a lawsuit filed by her wife and longtime partner, Angela Anobile.

Robb, of Fort Lauderdale, died at the rescue group’s Oakland Park facility on Feb. 17 after being attacked by Gladys, a 125-pound dog that had been rescued a month earlier near a gator-infested canal.

“As you can imagine, Angela is still heartbroken over the loss of Pam,” said Michael Shepherd, the attorney for Robb’s wife. “Angela wants to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else.”

At 71, Robb was healthy and living her best life with Anobile, her life partner of 25 years.

The lawsuit paints a gruesome picture of the last moments of Robb’s life.

When the dog went on the attack, Robb had no way to defend herself. When the attack was over, Robb’s body was bloody and full of puncture wounds, the lawsuit states. Several of her bones were fractured.

“She was there alone when the dog attacked her,” Shepherd said. “Then someone came and they were trying to save her. They didn’t immediately call 911. They tried to get the dog away from her by giving it a dog bone and splashing it with water. If they had training, they’d know the first thing to do would be to call 911.”

Amy Roman, the founder of the rescue group, could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.

Paul Milberg, Roman’s attorney, declined to comment.

Robb had been a volunteer with the rescue group for at least six years, rehabilitating and re-homing hundreds of abused and abandoned dogs.

She started working with the rescue group after retiring from her teaching job at Cooper City High School. Robb spent long hours at the rescue center at 345 E. Commercial Blvd. in Oakland Park.

Described by family and friends as a gentle soul, Robb taught physical education, health science, yoga and meditation for more than 40 years. Her obituary was headlined “The Kindest Person I’ve Ever Known.”

On the day she was attacked, Robb was outside with the dog, Anobile told reporters in an interview earlier this year.

Gladys bit into Robb’s arm before taking her to the ground.

The lawsuit details the long list of injuries: Puncture wounds to her face, right ear, neck, right shoulder, right breast, left arm, left wrist, left thumb, right thigh, right and left knees; and fractures to her right clavicle, right scapula, right humerus, right and left ribs and sternum.

In the weeks before the attack, Robb told friends she felt the dog was warming up to her.

“She was one of the few that the dog resonated with,” Anobile said. “She was just starting to build trust with the dog.”

Robb spent long hours at the rescue group’s building at 345 E. Commercial Blvd. in Oakland Park, according to her attorney.

She shared her enthusiasm on social media.

“We can’t save them all, but we can save a few,” she posted on Facebook in 2015. “And what a good feeling that is.”

The lawsuit, filed in July in Broward Circuit Court, seeks more than $30,000 in damages.

The suit accuses the rescue group of several lapses:

  • Failing to have policies and procedures in place for when animals attack
  • Failing to adequately and properly train employees on how to respond when animals attack
  • Portraying to the general public that the dog was anything but violent
  • Luring members of the public onto the premises by claiming the dog “needs your love and support.”
  • Failing to adequately warn volunteers that the dog was dangerous
  • Failing to provide Robb with proper protective equipment and failing to possess equipment to separate the dog from Robb
  • Failing to have a muzzle over the dog’s snout
  • Failing to call 911 in a timely fashion and failing to render first aid to Robb
  • Failing to use lethal means to stop the dog from harming Robb

The lawsuit seeks damages that cover the medical and funeral expenses, loss of past and future earnings, mental pain and suffering and the loss of companionship and protection.

Susannah Bryan can be reached at or on Twitter @Susannah_Bryan

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