A 6-week old baby boy died after being bitten by a family dog in Hartford, South Dakota.
Infant Dies After Dog Bite
Hartford, SD - An infant died Thursday after being bitten by a family dog, according to the Minnehaha County Sheriff's Office. Deputies were dispatched to a home in the 900 block of Trojan Avenue in Hartford about 5:40 pm. Fire and Rescue arrived first and found a 6-week old boy with "several bite wounds" from a dog. Audio dispatch files from Minnehaha County Fire Dispatch 1 (and the police call log) indicate the call was in response to a cardiac arrest, not a dog bite.
After arriving on scene, Fire and Rescue determined it was a dog bite and requested law enforcement and animal control come to the scene.
The infant was airlifted to a hospital, where he died of his injuries. The dog involved, the family's Belgian malinios, was taken into custody by the Sioux Falls Area Humane Society.1 Audio dispatch files indicate the infant gained a pulse and then lost it again prior to the airlift. There were multiple dogs in the family's home, according to the dispatch files. Earlier this year, a 4-week old boy died from "multiple sharp force injuries" after a family pit bull attacked him in Lafayette, Indiana.
"What are the details? There is a 6-week old child, on the floor, bleeding but not breathing … There is bleeding. I don't know where from."2
Infants, less than 1-year old, have the highest age-specific fatality rate and make up 48% of all dog bite fatality victims 2-years old and younger. This has been true in most, if not all, multi-year dog bite fatality studies. Between January 2005 and December 2019, only two dog bite fatalities were recorded in South Dakota. Both deaths occurred on Indian reservations during a 2-year period: 8-year old Jayla Rodriguez in 2014 and 49-year old Julia Charging Whirlwind in 2015.
In the Hartford attack, the father's Facebook page shows up to five large dogs in the home and a litter of great dane puppies in late 2019. There was at least one Belgian malinois in the home. "Sig" appears to be a German shepherd. Eerily, the shepherd-type "Alf" appears to have been on "baby duty" one day before the fatal attack. It is unknown if there was more than one malinois in the home. We disagree that either parent was "well versed" on the Belgian malinois dog breed.
2Minnehaha County and Sioux Falls Police, Fire, and EMS audio dispatch files, 6/11/20 (broadcastify.com).
01/27/20: 2020 Dog Bite Fatality: Family Pit Bull-Mix Kills Infant in Lafayette, Indiana
Law enforcement departments across the United States should release consistent "baseline" information to the media and the public after each fatal dog mauling, including these items.
Police officers commonly call Belgian Malinois German shepherds on crack. Very few dogs of this breed have temperaments that would make them suitable pets. And their fantastic athleticism could make them hard to confine. Deaths like this are so tragic. I just wish all families would protect their infants from these dogs so these deaths would never happen.
Cardiac arrest does not cause massive soft tissue exsanguination. The responsible adults were Not too cognitively challenged to be aware of the risk of grave threat. Instead, they consciously thought that Our Dog would never harm the baby, because it is our dog, and it loves the baby as much as we do. Well, they did not love their baby enough, because if they did, they would have, out of the action of spiritual love, provided a safe place for the baby at all times. They knew that dangerous canines and people do not mix, but they committed a willful violation of manifest common sense, due to projecting their human, cognitive desires onto a dangerous, wild canine. They falsely rationalized and falsely justified that the canine was domesticated. So, people who live in action of spiritual love are always at risk of dangerous canine attack, because people who are not in the action of spiritual love want to possess obviously dangerous canines. One day, Love will conquer Evil. All we can do is struggle to live as best as we can until then.
It feels like every few days recently has been death after death after death. Pits then Neo Mastiffs then more pits, now Malinois. It’s too much.
A precious 6 week old baby. Only 6 weeks on this earth. I just feel sad. The reports noting that there were multiple dogs in the home with a month old child are very concerning. But since we don’t know how the attack happened, I won’t assume anything about the parents. Rest in peace to the little boy.
By their pictures, Sig and Alf are both German Shepherd dogs. Maverick may be a Malinois. Alf appears to be a long coated GSD. All Malinois are sable in coat pattern. GSDs can be sable. The head type of Malinois is markedly different than the head type of GSDs. It would be nice to see pictures from the side of these dogs standing. Has the name of the dog which killed the baby been released?
By the pix above it appears to be 1.Malinois 2.Belgian Tervuren and 3 badly bred GSD. Just my observation from one angle pictures.
Agree completely, 2 is a Terv and the 3rd is definitely a GSD.
Two dogs pictured middle & right, are not Malinois, they are GSD.
SIg may be a Mal or not.
All tiny babies should be protected from dogs that may see them as an object of prey.
Well versed on the breed? Really? Then why the heck did she have this type of dog around an INFANT? Belgian malinios are well known for having a hard, punishing bite and a grip and hold attack style, which is why they are commonly used by the police. Again, it was her pathology; she ‘considered the dogs her children’. Dog are animals not children. I would not consider this type of dog a PET animal.
That poor baby. Looking at the father’s Facebook page you can see he was in the neonatal intensive care unit of the hospital following his birth until at least May 31. He didn’t even have two full weeks at home before the “family pet” tore him apart. He survived whatever difficulty he had at birth, received the most critical and dedicated hospital care for weeks, was hooked to monitors and wires presumably to keep a check on his vital signs at night… only to die in the jaws of a dog. The father kept referencing the baby’s future in his posts… but because these parents chose to keep a certain breed of dog, that future was taken away. (Notice it was not the golden retriever which killed the child but a breed known to attack and kill humans.)
The photo link to “Alf” sitting near the baby swing is chilling. Someone even comments what a good babysitter the dog is, while the parent responded that the baby was just in the dog’s usual spot. But I do wonder if “Alf” is the attacker, since he appears to be a Belgian Turveren and not a Malinois. “Maverick” is a Malinois. Even so, one can see just from this photo that the dogs were allowed to be in deadly proximity to the child, even when the parent is right there taking photos. These are lightning quick, extremely agile dogs and an attack could happen so quickly that it would be too late before a parent could even get unseated and cross the room.
What a shame that this little boy had fought so hard to survive after birth and had so many people fighting for him only to be left in a situation in which a deadly animal could make a killing blow.
True, these weren’t pit bulls. But in the case of helpless infants, they don’t have to be pit bulls to be deadly and unpredictable.
I think Alf is simply a long
haired GSD. The long coat gene is very common in GSDs. I actually put up a picture of a three month old purebred sable male GSD on Facebook and asked the breed About half the people thought he was a Turveren.
Clearly a dog, but that babysitting picture looks like a wolf is sitting by a baby.
I got here too late. Thank you for linking a few pictures here, since the Facebook is gone. It is VERY infuriating to see that the dogs were allowed so close to the baby. Malinois are not family pets, especially not when you have a baby. And these people had 3 of them. None of these dogs should have ever been allowed so close to the unprotected child. I also don’t like how the father said Liam “passed away unexpectedly” on his page. He did not just, pass away was KILLED. Killed by his father and mother’s dogs. I am very upset to read this. Dogs are not baby sitters, they are animals with instincts.
that was Alf’s spot lol he just wants it back
So, wait. The dad knew there was a territorial issue between a helpless infant and a powerful dog capable of killing that infant, and dad’s response is “lol”?
Sweet Jesus. People who own powerful dogs need to learn to respect the power of their dogs and not treat it as a joke. Complacency kills.
Before the family dog kills the baby – parents plaster FB with pix and convos and “jokes” about the dogs and baby.
After the family dog kills the baby – please “respect our privacy”
Thanks for saving copies of the photos, Colleen. Like Derrick, I got to the story too late. It is important for this information to be preserved.
Even if the parents don’t want that information out there now, they had no problem whatsoever plastering it all over their social media pages when they were so extremely (in hindsight, woefully and wrongly) confident about their baby’s safety.
There are sometimes such things are unforeseeable tragedies when an infant is killed. This was not one of them. Using euphemisms about how the infant died and deactivating the FB page aren’t going to change the fact of this baby’s death nor the circumstances surrounding it. I know the parents are in hell right now, so on the one hand I want to temper my criticism … but on the other hand, this was not an unforeseeable accident. They really, really should have known better. And now their baby is gone forever.
*such things as unforeseeable tragedies
OBTW I really wish people would drop that incredibly foolish “taste of blood” stuff. I read it from three separate commenters on the DNN FB page. Are these people not capable of thinking through what they say? Do they not recognize the illogic staring right back at them?
Bitches get the taste of blood when they clean up their newborn puppies. All dogs get the taste of blood when they lose their baby teeth. Dogs get the taste of blood cleaning up lacerations and broken.toe nails. A lot of people don’t understand that prey drive is really a game of chase.
Many dogs chase cars insanely. I have asked people if they do this because they love the taste of exhaust fumes.
Many folks simply don’t understand preu drive.
I used to feed my dogs a raw diet which included various bloody things and was never killed or even tasted by my dogs.
Considering raw meat was the major diet of dogs before dog food was invented and is still touted as the best diet for dogs from many breeders of working breeds, the “taste of blood argument” is indigenous at best and ludicrous, at worst.
Anyone with working dogs and especially dogs used for protection work who views them as “babies” isn’t mentally acute enough to own working dogs.
I’m with you Shep Owner.
A baby is dead because some parents without a foggy clue wanted to treat a powerful working breed like it was a poodle that fit in their backpack instead of respecting the dog for what it was. Alf shouldn’t have “a spot”–properly trained, every spot belongs to humans unless they *allow* Alf to use that spot.
We should stop licensing the dogs, and start licensing the owners.
Except then the “dawg lurvers” would step in and demand everyone wave cookies and hope for the best rather than rely on those that train powerful dogs to work in obedience, mondio, shutzhund and tracking.
Freaking spell check “indigenous” should read “DISINGENUOUS” at best….
The dog in the middle is a Shiloh Shepard dog. It is a mix between a German Shepard and an Alaskan Malamute, known for their black faces and long hair. A lady started breeding them in the 90’s…not recognized by the American Kennel Club yet, but they have their own associations. Alaskan Malamutes are huge dogs, twice the size of the Siberian Husky. Siberians have huge prey drives from their close relation to the wolf. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out the same is true for an Alaskan Malamute, and passing it on the the Shiloh Shepard.
It looks small to be a Shiloh, a giant breed where the males are over 100lbs. Looks more like a long-haired Belgian Shepherd, the Teruveun, to me.
There are many long haired German Shepherd Dogs. I would suspect the majority of GSDs carry the long coat gene. Germany considers them of equal value, but they compete in conformation only against other long coats.
Long coated GSDs have championed in the USA in AKC, but they were trimmed out. Once Germany decided to accept long coats, the German Shepherd Dog Club of America has had classes for long coats at the national specialty. Eventually the GSD standard in AKC will be changed, and long hair will not be a fault.
I haven’t heard of police or competitive sport people using Belgian Turveren. They are going to choose GSDs or Malinois over Turveren.
That bathtime video is chilling. There is never a moment in the video in which there are not multiple dogs begging like they are at the side of the dinner table. The newborn still has the stub of the umbilical cord and I cannot imagine what that smells like to the dogs. The dad knows there is a risk and you see this at the end when he uses the back of his hand and forearm to keep two of them back. Mom just keeps on filming. Sickos.
These “parents” are doing everything wrong, including the way they bathe a newborn.
A lot of photos of massive dane/pit heads right up to a newborn skull. Insane. I wouldn’t roll those dice with the best, safest dog in the world. What’s the reward for that risk? A photo op?
Addict behavior, replacing the drugs/drink with dogs.
Unsurprisingly, 2 of the pit bulls fight regularly, per the mother’s blog:
“As much as I would like to say the rest is history, there have been fights since then. Some pretty scary fights. I have a few scars from breaking them up. And the funny part about it all is that even though Kilo always comes out worse for wear, she somehow maintains her role as alpha. Sally will win every fight because Kilo doesn’t really want to fight, she just wants you to know who she is and back down. She’s all bark and no bite you could say.”
Sally’s the black pit bull, Kilo is one of the white ones. And yes, Kilo and Kain were named after cocaine:
“Kilo and Kain – Dahd’s original babies named after a Kilo of co(Kain)… Even though we both are in recovery, my hubby has a sense of humor.”
That famous addict humor.
When I was five our family cocker spaniel attacked me when we went tobogganing. I had to go to the hospital to get numerous puncture wounds dressed and a tetanus shot. My older sister told me he had attacked me because he wanted to stop me fro doing something he considered dangerous.
Since then I have learned, from animal psychologists, dogs can have their hunting instincts triggered when a person reaches the speed of prey trying to escape, or screams like prey in distress. We can breed dogs to look like sheep but they are still pack predators with hunting instincts.
If people want to have authentic human like relationships there is only one species with the cognitive capacity to understand and respect things like a person’s right to be and feel safe. Humans. To believe a dog can love you is an anthropomorphic delusion. What is not a delusion is a dogs instinctive behaviour to attack someone behaving like prey.
Who CARES what kind of a dog it is? It’s a murderer that just killed a BABY!
One’s selection of breed of dog has cost many people their lives. It would be a very rare Malinois that has the temperament to be a family pet. Some police officers have shot their Malinois police dogs for turning on them.
What Rachel said. Regardless of breed, it is a killer dog that should be euthanized. However, wise people will note the breed, and what type of breeds are most implicated in human deaths, and avoid owning those breeds outside of specialized situations.
Looks like that page is gone, unfortunately
You can write the blog now, Colleen.
You know, it’s going to happen. Just adjust the circumstance paragraph, when it happens.
Because it WILL happen.
Any experienced dog handler/trainer knows that is not how you handle big dogs and infants/children, together.
OMG, Colleen… As a mother and grandmother, I had to stop watching. This is pure, unequivocal insanity. This little angel has tremendous odds of being mauled/murdered at some point in her life. The jealousy of a few of the dogs is palpable. It’s absolutely chilling to watch. These parents should be reported to child welfare, not showcasing themselves on social media. The dog-worship-world has gone mad. Thank you for all the good work you do.
Oh my, that is chilling! That poor baby, House Hippos is a walking time bomb.
With proper supervision, pets and children can co-exist, BUT not all pets are suitable, or could ever be suitable, around children. This would include any pet whose mouth is so big it could chomp the child in one bite. As a mother, I shudder seeing those pictures. What in the world are those parents thinking?
I’m starting to think people need to pass a dog education class, and get a dog license. Granted, it wouldn’t change the mind of the deluded “dogs are people too” crowd, but there are other people would learn and benefit from it. Dogs, like all animals, are a wonderful example of creation (or evolution, however you want to think of it.) But dogs do not think like humans, and their instincts are not like humans. And dogs have many, many different breeds, and these breeds are going to have different instincts.
May God help that poor baby in House Hippos. Even if she survives, the next baby in the household may not. 🙁
Murder dogs gonna murder. Why didn’t they choose a normal dog to be around kids?
Oh well. Not my circus, not my monkeys.