Sun Sentinel Palm Beach Edition

Report: Girl needed medical attention after dog bite

- By Angie DiMichele South Florida Sun Sentinel

FORT LAUDERDALE — A 5-year-old girl needed several dozen stitches and staples after a dog bit her at a Fort Lauderdale park last week, reports say.

The girl’s father, Florian Becker, told WSVN-Ch.7 that his daughter is “absolutely traumatize­d” from the attack that happened at Hortt Park in the 1700 block of Southwest 14th Court.

Becker told Ch. 7 that the dog’s owner “invited the kids to come and pet the dog.”

“My daughter went up and pet him, and all of a sudden, the dog turned and bit her in the face,” Becker told the station.

WTVJ-Ch. 6 reported that the dog was wearing a leash. The girl’s mother grabbed the dog’s collar to intervene, but a clip on the collar broke, Ch. 6 reported, and the dog continued to bite the girl.

Becker’s wife tackled the dog onto the ground, and it eventually released the girl, according to Ch .6. The girl’s mother, who is an emergency room physician, took her to Broward Health Medical Center in Fort Lauderdale.

The dog’s owner and the animal had left the park by the time officers arrived, Ch. 7 reported.

WPLG-Ch. 10 reported that neighbors who live near the park shared surveillan­ce footage of the woman believed to be the dog owner, attempting to identify her. Security cameras at the park recorded the girl screaming during the attack, the station reported.

Ch. 6 reported that the owner has been identified and county animal control has since taken the dog, which the owner recently adopted.

Spokespers­ons for animal control did not return a voicemail or emails seeking informatio­n Monday evening. Fort Lauderdale Police referred questions to animal control, which is leading the investigat­ion.

It took several hours for his daughter’s wounds on her head, skull, shoulders and back to be stitched, Becker told Ch. 6, and she nearly lost an eye.

“She’s a sweet little girl — she’s very strong and very thoughtful, but this is absolutely terrifying,” Becker told Ch. 10. “This was near fatal. If my wife had not been there, this dog would’ve killed my daughter.”

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