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Relatives ‘fought the dog off the boy’ during attack by pit bull mix in Indio

An eight-year-old boy is still being treated for his injuries after being bitten in the face by a pit bull mix dog at a family member's Indio home, officials tell News Channel 3.

The child was visiting the home on Calle Diamante Monday afternoon when "the dog broke out of its kennel and ran straight for the child and attacked him," John Welsh with Riverside County Department of Animal Services told News Channel 3.

The boy's grandmother and another female relative "fought the dog off the boy" before the child's father rushed him to the hospital. The child was flown to Loma Linda University Medical Center for further treatment.

"Certainly, you know, he's going to face physical scarring, and then emotional scarring," says John Welsh, a Riverside County Department of Animal Services spokesperson. The dog escaped a travel-style temporary crate. "It's alarming that this, this dog was so aggressive that it essentially
Got out of its crate and went straight for the child" says, Welsh.

"Some additional information, which we did not have last night," says Welsh. "So the dog actually was kept in a crate. Some people will refer to that as a kennel. But it's essentially a temporary crate that is used when you're traveling with your animal or taking the animal to a veterinarian. So somehow the dog was able to bust out of that crate, and went straight for the child, unfortunately, and attacked the child and then the grandmother of the boy and another relative, a woman pulled the dog off of the child and put the animal in the backyard. And immediately the father of the child took his son to the hospital at JFK hospital in the city of Indio". Later, he was air lifted to Loma Linda University Medical Center.

Two relatives fought off the 2-year-old pit bull mix Monday afternoon. Now his family is by his side at Loma Linda university medical center.

"You know, they're their pride and joy, this little eight-year-old, little boy who's just starting, you know, the school year now have suffered this very serious attack, // so they're, they're very distraught," says Welsh. "These very traumatic events act as a way to illustrate to all that animals can be unpredictable. And we always want to make sure that we're doing everything we can to protect our family members, especially children".
It is suggested that you secure aggressive pets properly when having guests over.
The President of a local Coachella animal center has key takeaways for pet owners, to prepare them for guests. Pet owners should be "Neutering, socializing the dog, walking the dog, and then crating a dog," says Kirk Geiger.

The dog was surrendered to be euthanized.

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Editor's note 9/20/2022: A previous version of this report indicated that the child was "recovering at home." This information was attributed to Riverside County Animal Services and has since been updated.

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Miyoshi Price

Miyoshi joined KESQ News Channel 3 in April 2022. Learn more about Miyoshi here.

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