WISCASSET ME - A BABYSITTER'S DOG SAID TO BE AN 8-YEAR-OLD "BOXER" TURNED AND ATTACKED A TODDLER IN THE FACE AFTER THE BABY PUT HER HAND ON ITS BACK - AIRLIFTED TUFTS BOSTON WITH SEVERE EYE INJURIES!
A Wiscasset toddler is undergoing treatment at a Boston hospital after suffering serious eye injuries following an attack by her babysitter’s dog. The incident was reported at 6:09 p.m. Tuesday at a Raymond Road residence, where the girl was at a home with the dog’s owner.
Following the attack, the toddler was airlifted as far as Sanford, where the helicopter was forced to land due to bad weather. The girl was then taken to Tufts Medical Center in Boston by ambulance.
Police believe the girl is either 17 months or 18 months old.
Topsham Police Lt. Fred Dunn said Wednesday the girl is being treated for serious eye injuries, and doctors are unsure if she will retain her vision. Her condition isn’t life-threatening, he said.
A spokesperson for Tufts did not release the status of the girl’s condition Wednesday, because the hospital had not received clearance from the girl’s guardians.
The toddler lives with her grandparents in Wiscasset. Topsham Police Sgt. Robert Ramsay said the dog involved was an 8-year-old BOXER, and that the dog and child have spent time together since the child was a newborn.
According to Dunn, the babysitter was cooking dinner when the child put her hand on the back of the dog. The dog then turned and bit the child on the face. “Apparently (the babysitter) witnessed the whole thing,” Dunn said, adding that the babysitter reportedly had to hit the dog to get it off the child.
The dog was taken to Coastal Humane Society for a 10-day quarantine as required by law. Dunn said the owners are planning to euthanize the dog.
Dunn said there was no issue of neglect on the part of the dog’s owners, or complaints of the dog having been aggressive in the past. The incident is not being investigated further and charges aren’t expected, he said. “It just happened to be an unfortunate accident,” Dunn said. “It’s heartbreaking.”
First responders who responded to the attack have been debriefed at a session Tuesday where the fire department’s chaplain also spoke. Topsham Fire Chief Christopher McLaughlin said emergency personnel are able to handle situations well in the moment, but may still be affected by traumatic events, especially those involving children.
“We do in this service see a lot of traumatic stuff and it’s hard to know when something is going to affect somebody,” McLaughlin said Wednesday. “Calls like last night will have certain effects on certain individuals … so it’s important to follow up, make sure everything’s OK. You never know when something is going to change someone’s career.”