Pit bull attack leaves young boy hospitalized

Pit bull attack leaves young boy hospitalized
Friday, January 24, 2014 - 5:25pm

A 9-year-old boy from Progreso will spend the next few months in a San Antonio hospital recovering from injuries he sustained in a vicious dog attack.

Brandon Flores was walking home from school last week when three pit bulls attacked him.  The young boy suffered deep bite wounds and is now hospitalized for at least three months.

The owner of the pit bulls is being charged with Attack by Dog, which is a third degree felony.

"You are responsible for your dog's actions," said Hidalgo County Sheriff Lupe Treviño.  "And as crazy as it may be, it is true.  I mean, this did not have to happen."

The pit bulls were kept in a quarantine unit at Palm Valley Animal Center (PVAC) following the attack before being euthanized on Wednesday.  Animal center officials say these dogs did not act outwardly violent while they were at the facility.

"Humans have a tendency of making them do bad things, but in this instance it could have been pack mentality," explained Robert Russell, Director of Operations at PVAC.

Authorities say pit bull attacks happen too frequently, with many owners leaving their dogs unsupervised without leashes and left outside in unfenced areas.

Russell says there are a few things you can do to protect yourself if you ever encounter a dog attack.

"Don't turn your back on them.  Don't run, we have two legs they have four.  They'll catch you.  And if there's anything you can do to put something between you and them, that's the best thing to do, and call for help."

Because of the proximity to Mexico where dog fighting is prevalent, Palm Valley has a no-adoption policy for pit bulls that come to the shelter.

"It's not because we have anything against the breed in specific, it's social and environmental," said Russell.  "Dog fighting is really big down here, and we can't adopt them out."

Instead, the animal center chooses to humanely euthanize the pit bulls.  They say there is a low number of the breed that comes to the center, which is disheartening considering they are likely being used for dog fights either here or across the border.

Tissue from the pit bulls that attacked the young boy has bent sent for testing to make sure the animals did not have rabies.  South Texas is one of the regions in the state with the highest number of rabies incidents.

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