A 13-year-old girl is recovering from surgery after a brutal dog attack in Butler County. One of her neighbors saw it happen and rushed to pull three angry dogs off.
"The dogs were attacking her, she was in the ditch, it was really scary,” 17-year-old Sabrina Fandrick said.
It happened just outside Poplar Bluff as the girl, Lauren, was heading to the bus stop. Following the accident, her mom and other parents are calling for stricter rules in the neighborhood.
“Her clothes were pretty ripped up and she was bloody and very scared,” Her mother, Sarah Combs, said.
It is certainly not a way anyone wants to see their little girl.
“They said Lauren had been attacked by a dog and it was pretty bad and they had taken her to the ER and then I ran,” Combs said.
Combs was at work when the attack happened. She said she’s grateful that neighbors stepped in.
“I was scared. I realized that was an emergency,” Fandrick said.
Fandrick tried to pull the three large dogs off of Lauren. When she couldn’t, she ran to get help from another adult neighbor.
“It was horrifying,” Fandrick said. “When I saw her go down on the ground, and she started crying for help, that’s when I took off.”
“It took two people to get the three dogs off of her,” Combs said.
Combs said one of the dogs is usually friendly with the neighborhood kids, they’ve even played with it. She says this goes to show that pet owners can never be too careful.
“Put your dog up. Keep it on a lead. Keep it in your yard,” Combs said.
Another neighbor said this isn’t the first time one of those same dogs has threatened a child, many of whom are younger than five.
“They’re a lot smaller and more defenseless than the 13-year-old,” Combs said.
Right now, there’s no leash law in the county, but Combs and others want that changed.
“There are children that live in the county as well as the city. I think personally they should have the same laws in the county as they do in the city,” Fandrick said.
Combs said authorities have taken two of the dogs to be tested for rabies. However, officers have not yet taken the other one. As of now, she’s told they’ll all be returned to their owners, pending rabies test results.