http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/pit-bull-attacks-ny-teen-rescued-shelter-article-1.2352340Pit bull mix attacks Long Island teen after being rescued from kill shelter, gets euthanized: 'There was blood everywhere'
A pit bull mix rescued from a Manhattan kill shelter attacked a teen girl within seconds of stepping foot in its new Long Island home Sunday and was later put down, officials and scarred family members said.
The 2-year-old dog named Alex was saved by animal lover Stephen Neira, of Patchogue, just 22 minutes before he was set to walk down "death row" at Animal Care Centers of New York City.
But the brown-and-white canine's happy homecoming turned bloody when it lunged at Neira's three young children, chomping down on his oldest daughter's face, throat and arm.
"They're absolutely traumatized," Neira's father Frank Neira told the Daily News. "They won't even sleep by themselves since it happened. There was blood everywhere - on their deck, inside the house."
The 16-year-old victim, Briana, needed between 60 and 80 stitches on her arm after she lifted it to shield her throat, her grandfather said. She also underwent plastic surgery on her mauled lip at Stony Brook University after getting 20 stitches.
News 12 Long Island
A 2-year-old pit bull mix was rescued from a Manhattan kill shelter and attacked a teen girl within seconds of stepping foot in its new home.
"People need to be way more aware about abusing dogs and how utterly disgusting it is bc then they hurt people and there just animals as well," she tweeted Monday. "I just want to go home and pretend this never happened."
Briana was in a lot of pain and still recovering at the hospital Tuesday and refuses to speak to family members about the incident, Frank Neira, 60, said.
She and her 12-year-old sister Madison and 10-year-old brother Jake were anxiously waiting to greet their new pet when he entered from the back door and immediately lunged, unprovoked.
"The three of them were standing together waiting to be introduced to the dog," their grandfather said.
"They were all looking forward to it. The second they opened the door, he jumped. They didn't even get a chance to meet him."
Briana Neira, 16, needed more than 100 stitches and underwent plastic surgery after the dog mauled her lip, throat and arm.
Stephen Neira, 40, sprang into action and tried subduing the dog with a chokehold, but the 43-pound animal never loosened his grip.
A neighbor who heard the commotion ran over to help. It took three tranquilizer darts from responding authorities to slow the dog down, the family said.
Alex was euthanized hours after the attack at the Brookhaven animal shelter after officials deemed the dog "violent," said Jack Krieger, spokesman for the town of Brookhaven.
"When people ask for dogs to be put down, they put it down," he said.
he dog had passed behavioral tests and was deemed "sociable," though he often pulled hard on his leashes, the shelter said on its website.
The behavior department feels that he can go to an average home," it wrote.
Animal Care Centers of New York City did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The horrifying ordeal has left the Neira family shaken and confused.
Stephen Neira, 40, said he rescued the dog in order to give it a second chance at life.
Stephen Neira, who was at his daughter's hospital bedside Tuesday, is "terrified by what could have happened," his dad said. He took in the dog to give it a second chance at life.
"What happened was bad enough, but what could have happened is even worse," Frank Neira said.
"What I can't figure out is how the people at the shelter could not pick up that this was not a suitable dog to be around kids. A dog that has been brutalized by a previous owner is not a dog that should be around a family. That's for sure."
"It's unfortunate and very upsetting," he added. "I'm just grateful that things weren't worse."