A 6-year-old Manatee County boy is recovering at All Children's Hospital after getting attacked by a friend's pit bull Sunday evening.
The dog is now in quarantine at Manatee Animal Services. "Mack," a razors-edge pit bull, attacked 6-year-old Tristan Sharkey inside Jeff Gregg's house.
"The kids were bouncing around and feeding him cotton candy," said Gregg, who is the dog's owner.
He said the boy and his father stay in his spare bedroom on the weekends, and the boy is tentative around the dog.
"My dog's not a bad dog, he's well trained," said Gregg, who is sorry for the incident. "I've had him since a puppy and we bought him from a breeder."
Gregg left to pick his wife up from work, but left the boy with his stepmother.
"She grabbed the dog by the collar and was hitting him and trying to get him to get off of him," said Greg Myers, who was taking care of the Gregg's lawn Sunday afternoon when two girls came screaming out of the house.
"The dog's killing him," they yelled to him he said frantically. "Killing him, get him off!"
Myers ran inside and said he could not believe what he saw.
"I see the dog had the little boy by the back of the neck and was shaking him, he had him up off the ground, physically shaking him like a rag doll," said Myers, who jumped on the dog and began beating its skull, trying to get it to release the boy.
"And I started hitting it on the side of the head, telling him to let go, let go, let go and he wouldn't let go, so I put my thumbs in his eyes and I pressed down as hard as I could," said Myers and the dog finally did let go. He picked it up by its front legs, holding it from behind.
He said it kept shaking its head back and forth like it wanted to bite him as well.
"And then threw him out the back door and shut the door and by then, the little boy had ran outside screaming and crying and I ran out, I had a rag and I put it on his neck, because I kinda knew he was bleeding really bad," Myers said.
Luckily, there was a fire station only two doors down. EMTs got the boy stabilized and flew him to All Children's Hospital.
The Manatee shelter can keep the dog for up to 30 days, while it investigates. The shelter has a no-kill policy, but after the quarantine period, if the dog is still considered to be dangerous, it will have to be put down.
"State law mandates that if a person suffers serious injury at the hands of a dog unprovoked, then state law mandates the dog is to be humanely euthanized," Richmond said.
"That little boy is strong, he didn't even shed a tear through the whole thing," Gregg said.
"I'll probably have nightmares about it for a while, but now that he's ok, I just thank God that he's ok," Myers said.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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