Thursday, May 27, 2010

Pit Bull Attack Leaves Toddler in Critical Condition

A two-year-old boy was in critical condition Thursday night after being attacked by the family "pet".
Police told NBCLA a pit bull grabbed and bite the child in the family backyard in the 1500 block of West Kendall in San Bernardino at 7:15 p.m.
The child was rushed to Loma Linda University Medical Center in near death condition.
An eyewitness told an NBCLA contact the child was playing in backyard when the pit just snapped and attacked the boy.
Two dogs were taken from the family home by authorities but we're told only one beast was responsible for the attack.


Update May 28, 2010 8:20am - The San Francisco Chronicle is reporting that the boy has died.
Sgt. Travis Walker says the boy died early this morning.
Walker says investigators reported that it appeared to be an unfortunate and tragic accident.
No further information is currently available.

Update May 28, 2010 8:31am - A report by the San Bernardino Sun identifies the boy as Nathan Aguirre.

Update May 28, 2010 9:21am - The Press-Enterprise is reporting that the parents of Nathan left him alone with the dogs, briefly, in the back yard.
Nathan and his father had been playing in the yard for about an hour when the father went inside.
Nathan's mother came out a few moments later to check on him and saw that the dog had him in it's mouth.
She apparently gave a command to the dog and the dog let go of Nathan.
The report states that the family has had this particular dog for about three months.
No criminal charges are contemplated.

Update May 28, 2010 1:53pm - The San Francisco Chronicle, in a report, identifies the parents as Raul Aguirre Ramirez and Kitziha Navarro. Nathan lived with them, an 8-year old brother, and the two dogs.
"We talked to family and neighbors in the area and there had been no previous incidents of aggression at all," San Bernardino police Sgt. Gary Robertson said.
Police have never been called to the house for any kind of problem, he said.
The family has had the year-old male pit bull for about three months. They got him from a person in Muscoy, he said. The other dog was older and bigger but not involved, Robertson said.
There were bowls out for the dogs, both for food and water, and there was food in at least one of the bowls, Robertson said. "We are not seeing any criminal culpability on the part of either parent," he said.

* The dog that attacked the boy was not neutered. Why is this important? Intact male dogs are more likely to bite than "fixed" males. Especially during "mating" season.
I've read many articles regarding this attack and none reported this, so I called the San Bernardino shelter, where the dogs are being held, and asked. It was unknown, to the person that I spoke with, whether or not the female was spayed.
Intact males represent 80% of dogs presented to veterinary behaviorists for dominance aggression, and account for 70% to 76% of all dog bites (AVMA).
The reason I made the call is because now is the heart of the season. Did the parents have the idea of breeding for puppies? While I have my suspicions, I can't honestly say one way or the other -- especially since the information on the female is not available.
None-the-less, it was very poor judgment on the part of the parent to leave a two-year old child alone with the dogs, if even for a "moment".
Infants and toddlers, and for the most part all children, should never be left unsupervised with any dog because, as shown in this case, it is a tragedy in the making.
I once saw a sticker on the back of a truck that was meant to refer to the rules of the road, but can be applied to dog ownership and all walks of life: "An unguarded minute has an accident in it".

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