FORT PIERCE, Fla. -

A Coconut Creek man was arrested on a charge of animal cruelty after he attacked a dog that nipped at his daughter at an animal adoption event, police said.

Witnesses told Fort Pierce police they saw John Gibson grab Boston and slam the 3-year-old dog to the ground.

Diane Shaw and other Humane Society of St. Lucie County volunteers were outside a tractor supply store looking for someone to adopt Boston, who was in a volunteer's lap when the girl approached.

"She went to pet the dog and the dog nipped at her," Humane Society spokeswoman Rita Hart said.

Shaw said Gibson flew into a fit of rage. She said he ran inside the store, ran back out and grabbed Boston out of the volunteer's hands.

"The man grabbed the dog behind the collar and just pulled like that, back of the neck and the collar, to take it away from her," Shaw told WPBF-TV in West Palm Beach.

Shaw said Gibson then slammed Boston on the pavement and tried to stomp on the dog before others pulled him away.

"Be it a dog or not, just total inhumanity," Shaw said. "There's no reason for a reaction like that."

Boston suffered a broken leg and was bleeding from the impact.