Dogs Attack, Kill 4-Year-Old Child, Injures Another

A 4-year-old boy in Texas died Wednesday morning after suffering injuries sustained during an attack by dogs, according to local authorities.

Children have been identified as the "most common victims" of dog bites by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). About 26 percent of the children who are bitten by dogs require treatment in an emergency room, according to CDC data cited by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, with an estimated 2,400 dog attacks occurring every day.

In Baytown, a city east of Houston, police said in a Wednesday press release that officers received reports about a dog fight at about 7:40 a.m. local time. The dog fight reportedly occurred at a home along the 2700 block of Massey Tompkins.

Dog attack 4-year-old died
A 4-year-old child died after they were attacked by dogs in Texas Wednesday morning, according to local authorities. Above, a police dog is photographed barking at Windsor Park on July 14, 2017, in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Baytown Police Chief John Stringer said of the attack that officers had responded to "a call that every officer dreads" in a statement from the department.

"We are heartbroken for the loss of this child," Stringer said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone in the community who has been impacted by this tragedy."

Officers arrived at the residence to find a 4-year-old child, later identified by police as a boy, suffering from injuries incurred during an attack by dogs, according to the release. Police initially reported that a neighbor who had been "trying to intervene" also sustained injuries in the attack and received treatment. Later Wednesday, police said the second individual injured in the attack was not a neighbor but a resident of the home.

Emergency medical personnel tended to the child's injuries before he was taken to Baytown Hospital. Once there, medical officials said the boy had died from the injuries he sustained in the attack.

The names of the boy and the other injured individual have not been publicly released by authorities. Police said the boy was staying at the private home where the attack took place but did not state whether he lived at the residence on a permanent basis.

Baytown police said the dogs involved in the attack were taken by animal control officials but did not specify the number of dogs that were believed to have been involved.

A spokesperson for Baytown police told Newsweek that, as of Wednesday afternoon, the department was not releasing any additional information about the child's identity or the circumstances surrounding the dogs' attack.

People are most likely to be attacked by dogs in their homes or in the homes of friends, according to data cited by the UPMC. More than $1 billion is estimated to be spent on treatment for dog bites every year, the UPMC's website says, with children in particular identified as often incurring injuries from dogs on their heads and necks.

Updated 2/23 at 4:54 p.m. ET: This article has been updated to reflect new information released Wednesday afternoon by the Baytown Police Department.