Dog Bite Turns Fatal on Newborn Baby ~ OPOLAW Injury Blog

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Dog Bite Turns Fatal on Newborn Baby

Saturday night turned out to be very heartbreaking for one family from Hopatcong. The mother of 6-day-old, Alexis Hennessy, put Alexis in her crib and left the room just for a moment thinking she would be safe. When the mother stepped out the family dog, a 40-pound male husky named Shadow, bit Alexis on the head and inflicted a mortal wound. Alexis was rushed to the hospital where she was pronounced dead Saturday night.
It was stated that the dog was not aggressive towards anybody and that the officers who came to retrieve the dog couldn’t get it to be aggressive. However, Jennifer Shryock, a dog behavior consultant from, a program that prepares families with dogs for life with a baby, said infants should never be left alone -- even for a moment -- with a dog, due to the animals' unpredictability. Shryock says that if a dog is in the house the baby is not safe. A dog unfamiliar with an infant may mistake it for prey or a wounded animal, or even a squeaky toy, Shryock said. In such cases, instinct may kick in, and bites may not be done out of aggression

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