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Dogs attacked children playing Four Square, hospitalizing two

A children’s game of Four Square was brought to an abrupt end when Tiny and Tank barrelled in, agitated.

Tank, a large 6-year-old brown brindle bullmastiff who weighs about 120 pounds, and Tiny, a large 4-year-old black and white pitbull who weighs about 50 pounds, escaped from their home across from Desert Pines High School on Oct. 23 and bit two young children severely enough to require hospitalization, according an animal control report.

The dogs walked toward the group, where Tank attacked a 12-year-old girl, the report said. Tiny followed.

The animal control report showed neither dog had a history of biting.

The girl’s head and right eye were punctured, and she was sent to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center for what police called superficial injuries.

A 5-year-old boy saw the dogs coming and tried to run away, the report states. Tank and Tiny attacked him and punctured this shoulder and side. A responding animal control officer said he also had lacerations on his face, body and head from being dragged on the ground.

Animal Control Officer Ramos said in the report he saw the boy laying on the ground bleeding from the head. He and a Las Vegas police officer tried to control the bleeding until medical personnel arrived.

The boy was transported to University Medical Center’s trauma unit, where he underwent surgery. His current condition was unavailable.

Ramos found the dogs in the backyard of a nearby home. The dogs’ owner, Saul Najera, wasn’t home at the time of the attacks. His brother, Ivan Najera, was home and told officials that at first he didn’t know the dogs had gotten out. However, a witness told Ramos he saw Ivan putting the dogs back into his yard.

When animal control officers asked to see the dogs, Ivan complied. He put leashes on the dogs and walked them into the animal control vehicle.

Saul Najera was later fined $700 for each dog for eight total violations, including failing to license the dogs, no proof of rabies vaccines, not neutering the animals and letting the dogs run free.

Tank and Tiny were placed in quarantine for 10-days at Lied Animal Shelter, which ends Saturday.

Najera signed over ownership of both dogs to the City of Las Vegas. Tank and Tiny, having exhausted the hold on Saturday, have been cleared for euthanization by animal control.

Meghan Scheibe, a spokeswoman from the animal shelter, said once a dog is authorized for euthanization, it is housed separately from the other animals in the shelter. The animal is put to death with an injection of sodium pentobarbital.

Najera’s court hearing in the case has been scheduled for Dec. 11.

Contact reporter Annalise Porter at aporter@reviewjournal.com

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