Update: Woman & Child Recovering After Dog Attack

By: Rowena Li Email
By: Rowena Li Email

A Grand Island woman and her young son are recovering after being attacked a family dog.

Kayla Shoestring, 29, was upgraded to fair condition Wednesday, according to a spokesman at the Lincoln hospital where she's being treated. Her son, Hayden, was released from Saint Francis Medical Center in Grand Island on the same day.

The two were staying with the boy’s grandfather when one of his dogs turned on them just before 5 p.m. Monday.

G.I. police said the attack started at 1405 West North Front Street, but the 29-year-old woman and 4-year-old boy ended up at a neighbor's house. The attack lasted more than 10 minutes, leaving the victims with what police described as “significant injuries.”

That neighbor’s security system captured the attack on camera. They said they’re shocked at what happened because the dog had always been friendly.

“I just felt like, in knowing the dog, something had to have happened for him to do that. First time I met him I walked through the door, he jumped up, was licking me. I've known him for about a year now since they've lived there, never once has he been aggressive, not one bit,” said Matthew Thompson. Part of the attack occurred on his porch.

Surveillance footage shows the victims trying to get away from the dog, leaving a trail of blood in their paths. The video also shows the pit bull repeatedly mauling the woman’s arm, even after she’s fallen down to the ground.

“I just couldn't understand why he wouldn't stop, how come he was, why was he continuing to tear at her when she was bloody, she was on the ground. I mean you could tell, she was just helpless,” Thompson said.

The video also shows the boy trying to save his mother by beating the dog with a broom and going to get help.

“I saw a brave young boy who would've died for his mother,” said Thompson. “And I also saw a terrified young woman who, I think she probably thought she was going to die.”

Animal control took the pit bull to the Central Nebraska Humane Society Monday afternoon. On Tuesday, Laurie Dethloff of the Central Nebraska Humane Society confirmed that the owner had chosen to have the dog euthanized.

They’re not sure why the attack occurred, but say that it may have had something to do with the new female pit bull the family had just received, a female that was possibly in heat.

“If it was interacting in a space that was the original dog's space, that can create a problem. There's just a lot of things that were going on that created the catalyst for this,” Dethloff said.

Neighbors said the boy has undergone surgery at a Grand Island hospital and that his mother has been transported to a Lincoln hospital.


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