Family dispute after four year old attacked by dog
By: CJ Cassidy
SIKESTON, Mo. - A Sikeston woman says she rushed her four-year-old son to the emergency room after her cousin's dog attacked him.
Now she wants the dog put down, but the cousin says that's not fair.
He's doing a lot better, but the boy's mother says she doesn't want to take the chance the dog will attack another child.
The dog's owners say their pet was provoked, and he was simply trying to defend himself.
"Right here's where he got his face. He did have stitches there. They took them out, they put butterfly stitches in it, it got his ear here," Annie Loflin said.
She's glad her son, Trevor, is recovering so well from the dog attack.
He even felt up to talking to us.
"I was down on the ground and I had mud on my hands and blood on my hands," Trevor said.
His mother admits Trevor provoked her cousin's dog while he was on a chain.
"They were outside hitting the dog, hitting him with sticks. They were trying to get on top of his doghouse," Loflin said.
But she still thinks the American Bulldog should pay for attacking her son.
"I think they should euthanize the dog. I don't think he's safe to be around other kids," she said.
"What other defense does a dog have?" said the dog's owner Tonya Rangel. She named her pet "Blue."
She wishes Trevor the best, but she also wants the best for her dog.
"I hope I get my dog back. I love him like I love one of my kids. I bawled my eyes out when they took him away," she said.
Blue's now at the Sikeston Humane Society. Volunteers say they haven't had any issues, and he gets along well with the staff.
Tonya Rangel keeps a picture of her eight-month-old pet on her cell phone.
She says she's not afraid to let Blue back among her five young children; she just wants him back.
"He's never been aggressive. He's never barked at anybody in the wrong way or bit anybody, but the little boy kept coming at him, and coming at him, and he didn't have any other defense."
The Sikeston Code Enforcement officer says the dog is quarantined.
Trey Hardy says they will now list Blue as a dangerous dog.
Even though he doesn not have a history of previous attacks, his owners will have to take steps to make sure they keep Blue inside or on a leash and muzzle when he's outside.