California Girl, 3, Mutilated in Face, Arms and Stomach by Pitbull
A three-year-old California girl suffered injuries to her face, arms and stomach after being mauled by a pit bull in a brutal attack.
The girl, who has not been identified, was rushed to hospital and needed 180 stitches in her face after the attack in the backyard of a house in Hemet, in Southern California this past weekend.
She received additional stitches on her hip, but has since been released from hospital, Fox11 reported.
The two-year-old male pit bull was tied up at the time of the attack. Authorities are certain the dog would have killed the toddler had it been loose, Animal Services’ Lesley Huennekens told Fox11.
“It’s horrible what happened to that girl,” Huennekens said.
Authorities aren’t sure how the girl came to wander around the backyard or if she was unattended at the time.
Newsweek contacted the Riverside County Department of Animal Services for comment.
A Riverside County Sheriff’s Department officer, Mick McGee, told Fox11 the dog was powerful and aggressive. As he drove to the scene of the incident, McGee used a stick to control the animal, but he still viciously lunged at its legs.
The dog was cared for by Riverside County Animal Services after the incident. American pit bulls are considered one of the most vicious dog breeds. Breed, even mixes, are responsible for most deaths and injuries in dogs.
According to Fox11, the dog’s owner protested the seizure of the animal. There are no further details on what will happen to the dog, although East Bay Times said he could be euthanized.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), dogs bite 4.5 million people in the United States each year.
“His severity illustrates the need for all large dog owners to always be extra vigilant about responsible pet ownership when children are present,” said a spokesperson for the Riverside County Department of Animal Services, John Welsch. The East Bay Times.
According to research published by the BMJ, dog bites are a consistent cause of children’s emergency room visits – more than half of all dog bite victims are children.
About 26 percent of all child victims need urgent medical attention for their injuries. According to the CDC, dog bites are an even worse problem for children than mumps, whooping cough and measles. For children, dog bites occur more regularly than other injuries, such as those sustained in playgrounds or bicycle accidents.
Treatments for dog bite wounds cost hospitals more than $1 billion each year. The face, neck and head are the areas most frequently attacked by children.