Originally Posted by ElizabethM
... if the dog was to attack your child (or any person) it it not legal to shoot the dog and you will be charged with animal cruelty...
I don't think there is a chance in Hades of that being correct. It is legal to shoot humans to protect yourself or others in most states.
"18-1-704. Use of physical force in defense of a person
Except as provided in subsections (2) and (3) of this section, a person is justified in using physical force upon another person in order to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use of imminent use of unlawful physical force by that other person, and he may use a degree of force which he reasonably believes to be necessary for that purpose.
Deadly physical force may be used only if a person reasonably believes a lesser degree of force is inadequate and:
The actor has reasonable ground to believe and does believe, that he or another person is in imminent danger of being killed or of receiving great bodily injury" Sheriff's Office - Colorado Revised Statutes - Jefferson County, Colorado
I'm sure all shootings, dog & man, are reviewed to make sure they were valid.
If an angry Chihuahua is after you, shooting will get you in trouble. If it is a 200 lb Rottie who is after you, I'd bet the law will leave you alone. In any case, I'd use whatever force I thought needed to protect my family or myself.