Newton Grove, N.C. — A Newton Grove boy was being treated Friday at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center in Fayetteville after being attacked by a pit bull Thursday afternoon, authorities said.
Three-year-old Will Baggett suffered injuries to his face, neck and legs from the mauling, which occurred at the home of his mother's cousin, Brooke Weeks, at 4130 Penny Tew Mill Road, authorities said.
He was listed in critical condition Friday, and his mother, Ginger Baggett, said he could be in the hospital for a week.
"He just said, 'Mommy, tell that doggy me not a toy,'" she said.
Will was staying with Weeks while Baggett ran to the supermarket. The 7-month-old dog, which belongs to Weeks' boyfriend, Justin Strickland, rushed out of the room where it was being kept when Weeks opened the door, authorities said.
"He saw the dog and started screaming, and that's when the dog lunged for him," Baggett said.
Weeks struggled with the dog and was eventually able to pull it off Will and get it out of the house, she said.
"If it were not for her, he'd be dead," she said. "She jumped on the dog. She bit him – she bit the dog to try to get him off of him."
A Sampson County deputy responding to a 911 call fired a shot at the dog, which was behind the house, but the dog ran into some nearby woods, authorities said. Deputies searched the area but couldn't find it.
Strickland, who wasn't in the house at the time of the attack, later located the dog, authorities said. At the request of deputies, he took it to the Sampson County Animal Shelter to be quarantined for 10 days.
The dog's fate after the quarantine period is over is unclear. Animal shelter officials said that, if the dog is returned to Strickland, it would have to remain in an enclosed shelter and wear a muzzle any time it leaves.
"He hurt my child so bad. If another human being inflicted injury on another human being like that, there would be consequences," Baggett said.
No charges have been filed in the case, which remains under investigation.