A woman was taken to the hospital with minor injuries Friday after being attacked by two pit bulls and a rottweiler in front of a Fort Lauderdale church.
The 44-year-old woman, whose name was not released, was walking along the 1100 block of North Andrews Avenue when the dogs ran out of a nearby yard after a gate had been left open, according to the Fort Lauderdale Police Department.
People passing through the area saw the woman struggling for help and were able to stop the dogs from attacking further. They brought the dogs back to the yard and closed the gate.
When police arrived, the dogs had been moved inside the house. Det. Kathy Collins, a spokeswoman, said the dogs' owners did not answer the door in an effort to avoid the police.
The victim was taken to the hospital at her request.
Her attack came just one week after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Dog Bite Prevention Week. According to the CDC, 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year, and about one in five of those attacks require medical attention.
One-third of dog-bite related fatalities come from pit bulls. While pit bull ownership has been illegal in Miami-Dade County since 1989, Broward has no laws to forbid or control the breed. Florida has had a ban on breed-specific laws since 1990, but state legislators introduced a bill in March that would give all communities the right to regulate dogs based on breed. If the bill passes, cities and counties could require owners of specific breeds to muzzle their dogs or carry insurance.