A 12-year-old girl is recovering from dog bites suffered from a neighbor’s bull dog/boxer mix in Cordova.
Mary Katherine Williams was injured Thursday evening on Church Street near the Meadowood community.
“My friend just wanted us to play with Jada and help feed her,” Williams said of the dog. “ But the dogs were too excited so I decided not to.”
The friend, 10-year-old Jordan Jernigan, let out a Chihuahua, Labrador retriever and Jada, the brown and white bull dog/boxer mix. Jada bit Williams’ back, stomach and arm, resulting in 18 stitches.
The girl said the family has had the dog since it was a puppy and didn’t think that it would bite. The Jernigan family could not be reached for comment.
The attack happened as the girl was leaving on her bike.
“The screams were heard by the grandfather of Jernigan,” said Jimmy Williams, father and pastor of Midway Baptist Church in Rockingham. “Katie and her friend were both screaming.”
According to Jimmy, there were three rescue squads: one from Cordova Fire and Rescue and two from FirstHealth Richmond Memorial Hospital in Rockingham to respond.
Susan Williams, the mother of Williams, was home and came to her daughter’s side when the incident happened.
“She was admitted to the emergency room that evening,” she said. “We had to bring her back on Saturday and Sunday on, due to an infection.”
The infection spread from the top of Williams’ knee almost to her ankle.Williams has been in the hospital since Sunday.
“The nurses here and the emergency technicians couldn’t believe how well she was taking the incident,” Jimmy said.
The bites to Williams’ arm, back and stomach are expected to heal on their own.
“I am not in any pain right now,” Williams said.
According to the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, they responded to the call but no report was written. The Richmond County Animal Control responded to the scene.
According to Mike Norton, the dog has had its shots and rabies is unlikely. The dog is being confined for 10 days at the Jernigan’s home and can only be out on a leash.
“The family wanted to take the dog to South Carolina but was advised the dog needed to be kept in the county under surveillance,” Norton said.
He went on to say that the victim’s family can request a hearing to determine if the animal is vicious. If that happens the owners will have to put up a sign advising of the danger.
“The request would have to be in writing,” Norton said.
Williams, who is home schooled by her parents, doesn’t have to worry about missing classes due to her injury.
She is currently at FirstHealth Richmond Memorial Hospital in Rockingham and is expected to be discharged from the hospital today.
Staff Writer Hollie Nivens can be reached at (910) 997-3111 ext. 19, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.