2:05 p.m. update: The toddler was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at Children's Hospital Central California in Madera, according to the Merced County Sheriff's Department. He was flown to Children's Hospital from Emanuel Medical Center in Turlock.
A toddler is in critical condition after being attacked by a pit bull, the Merced County Sheriff's Department said.
The incident happened at the 9000 block of Donovans Way this morning.
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The 17-month-old boy was mauled by a 65-pound pit bull while he was being watched by a baby sitter.
The boy is hospitalized in critical condition at Turlock Emanuel Hospital.
The events unfolded around 9:30 a.m., Spokesman Deputy Tom MacKenzie said.
A woman called 911, screaming hysterically. When the line went dead, sheriff’s deputies drove to the home to make sure everything was OK.
When they arrived, there was blood on the doorstep, MacKenzie said.
Deputies located the child after trying to stop the babysitter’s car for driving erratically near Swanson and Merced avenues.
The babysitter pulled over, jumped out of the car and handed the bloodied boy to the deputy.
The woman told officers she was babysitting the boy when her 65-pound pit bull bit down on the child’s throat and dragged him around the yard.
She was able to rescue the baby after stabbing the dog with a fork several times.
She called 911, but hung up to drive to the hospital.
After the traffic stop, paramedics took the child from the side of the road to Turlock Emanuel.
Animal control arrived at the home and took the pit bull into their custody.
There were no other children at the house during the attack. It is unclear whether the babysitter was related to the child. The boy’s parents have been notified.
No charges have been filed at this time and the incident is still under investigation, MacKenzie said.
This is the second vicious pit bull attack in Delhi this month.
On Oct. 1, a 28-year-old Delhi woman was attacked by a 60-pound pit bull at Shanks Road and Letteau Avenue, less than a mile away from this attack. The woman was treated for several lacerations at Emanuel and her dog recovered from a bite to its neck.
The pit bull in that case was quarantined and later euthanized, according to Merced County spokeswoman Katie Albertson
Keep checking MercedSunStar.com for updates on this developing story.
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