2 San Francisco Area Toddlers Mauled By Pit Bulls in Separate Incidents

| by Denise A Justin

Two family Pit Bulls seriously mauled San Francisco Bay Area toddlers in separate attacks within 24 hours, officials reported. Both injured children were taken to the Oakland Children’s Hospital, according to KTVU news. One attack occurred in Concord and the other in Castro Valley and the identities  of the victims were not disclosed.

The Pit Bull responsible for the Concord attack on Monday, May 3, was euthanized and is being tested for rabies, officials said. The Concord toddler is reported in stable condition but faces a lengthy recovery. She was treated at the scene before being airlifted to the Oakland hospital. According to reports, the little girl was attacked and bitten at three different times on the face, head and leg by a pit bull just before 5 p.m. at a house on Rose Lane near Treat Boulevard.

"At this point, we're conducting an investigation," said Contra Costa Animal Services Lt. Joe De Costa. Neighbors seemed to know very little about the residents, saying they only saw them occasionally. Some didn't even know they had a pit bull.

Authorities are trying to determine if anyone in the family would face criminal charges. "We'll be investigating whether or not they had any knowledge of the dog having a prior aggressive history, said De Costa. If that was the case, there's a potential that they could face some criminal charges. At this point, it doesn't appear that is the case."

A six-year-old Pit Bull-German Shepherd mix was responsible for the Castro Valley incident, which occurred about 2:00 a.m. on Tuesday, May 4--less than 24 hours after the Concord attack.  It occurred  at a home on the 2100 block of Gary Dr. Alameda Sheriff’s Department Sgt. J.D. Nelson told KTVU the dog is still in custody of  East County Animal Shelter in Dublin and under quarantine for 10 days to determine whether it is infected with rabies.

Alameda County authorities announced at a Tuesday afternoon press conference that Sheriff's deputies responded at 3:30 a.m. to a report that a two-year-old boy had been brought to Eden Hospital with severe lacerations to his head after being attacked by the family Pit Bull.

Deputies reported they found the house in complete disarray and subsequently arrested the boy's father and mother for child endangerment. Sgt Nelson explained that the arrests were not directly related to the dog mauling, but rather to the state of the house, where dangerous items were found within the child's reach, along with spoiled food and feces.  "[It was] very un-kept," said Nelson. "Not fit for a two-year old boy to have to live in."

After arrest, the mother was hospitalized because of an injury she had sustained. It was unclear how she had been injured. "More than likely, it [the injury] came from an animal, but we're still working on that," Nelson told KTVU news. The boy's father remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail.

Police said they were questioning if the attack happened where the parents claim it did because of the lack of blood evidence inside the home. KTVU reported that neighbors said the house on Gary Drive belongs to the child’s grandparents, and the family and the Pit Bull do not live there.

Nelson said the boy's injuries were serious enough to require surgery and described them as worse than those suffered by a two-year-old girl in a similar mauling in Concord Monday.