A 9-year-old boy was hospitalized Wednesday after he was mauled by three dogs on Vista Lane, west of Roswell. (Randal Seyler Photo)
A 9-year-old Chaves County boy is in the hospital after being mauled by three dogs early Wednesday morning.
The dogs were pit bull mixes, and two of the animals were shot by the boy’s father, said Lt. Mike Herrington of the Chaves County Sheriff’s Office.
The incident occurred at 5196 Vista Lane, which is the location of a kennel, Herrington said.
“The people there run a shelter where they rescue animals from the pound. These four dogs had gotten out.”
The kennel was operated by a group called Doggy Saviors, according to officials. There were four dogs in the pack that attacked the boy, but only three animals actually bit the child.
“One of the dogs was killed, and the other was wounded and ran off. It was later put down by the animal control officer,” Herrington said. “The other two dogs in the attack have been quarantined for observation to make sure they don’t have rabies.”
The attack happened at about 9 a.m. and the boy was taken to a local hospital, then airflighted to Lubbock for medical care.
“I was at the hospital this morning, and I saw that little boy,” said Mayor Dennis Kintigh. “It wasn’t good.”
The boy is a son of a Roswell Police Department detective who lives out in the county. The police department is not releasing any information on the incident, including the name of the detective involved.
“What was disturbing to me is that the reports I have received indicate that these particular pit bulls had been rescued from the pound,” Kintigh said, “and that animal rescuer was not keeping the dogs under control.”
Not all of the animals at the kennel, 20 in all, were pit bulls, Herrington said. The owners of the kennel, Doggy Saviors, signed the remaining 18 animals, including two surviving animals that were involved in the attack, over to the animal control officers, and county and city animal control worked together to transport the animals to the shelter in Roswell.
“Besides the two dogs being held for observation, the remainder of the animals will be available for adoption at the shelter,” Herrington said. “They were owner surrendered to the shelter.”
According to a Facebook page run by Doggy Saviors, the group is dedicated to saving Roswell’s death row dogs.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the 16 dogs at the Roswell Animal Services shelter were available for adoption or rescue, said Angela Martinez, spokesperson for the shelter.
“A Colorado group has expressed interest in coming to rescue the dogs, but they are now available for rescue from anyone,” she said.
Of the two dogs held back, the one that actually participated in the attack is in quarantine and the fourth dog is being kept in a separate cage, Martinez said.
“They are available for rescue as long as the rescuer is not associated with the group Doggy Saviors,” Martinez said.