Warning For Illinois Parents: Children and Pit-Bulls Can Be a Fatal Mix
In a tragic dog-attack incident, a 21-month-old Monica Laminack was mauled to death by her family’s seven Pit-Bull pets in the backyard of her Ellabell, Georgia home. According to the County Sheriff’s Office, the incident occurred on March 27th, when the child’s 18-year-old mother went out to the store, leaving her in the care of a 12-year-old relative. Five adults were present in the home when the child crawled trough a doggie door into the fenced yard where the attack occurred.
The child’s grandmother, who had been asleep upstairs, awoke to hear the dogs barking. When she looked out her window, she saw the dogs dragging her granddaughter around the yard. Emergency Medical Services was called to the scene and immediately called the coroner, as it was evident that the child had been dead for some time. According to authorities, it appears that the mauling occurred about 6pm and lasted for about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Officials state that an autopsy will be performed and that it is expected that charges will be filed in the case. All seven of the Pit-Bulls were euthanized by animal control officers. As is the case in many such incidents, adults in the household were confident that these family pets posed no injury danger to the child, as the dogs had shown no aggression in the past.
This horrific case illustrates the dangers of leaving children and animals together without adult supervision, even when those animals are long-time family pets who have a history of gentle interaction with those children. As any Chicago personal injury attorney can tell you, interactions between small children and pets often take on a different, more dangerous dynamic when there is no adult present. A dog that may tolerate pinches or pokes from a small child when its master is present isn’t as patient when left alone with a child, and children are often rougher with animals when parents aren’t watching. This is especially true when those dogs are Pit-Bulls. According to DogsBite.org, a public information site that compiles statistics on dangerous dogs, 61 percent of fatal dog attacks in 2012 involved Pitt-Bulls, which comprise less than 5 percent of the total U.S. dog population. In 50 percent of those fatalities, the victims were children ages 8 and under. Of the children killed, 79 percent were ages 2 and under, and in 64 percent of those cases, children were killed by the family pet. The bottom line for Illinois parents is this: No matter how gentle a family pet is, leaving it alone with a small child can result injury or death, particularly if that animal is a Pit-Bull, a breed that has an established track-history of turning on children with deadly results.