St. Charles toddler attacked by family dog dies

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ST. CHARLES, MO (KTVI) – The 22-month-old girl that was mauled by her family’s dog last week has died from her injuries. Our partners at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch report that Deriah Solem died Saturday at Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center. The medical examiner listed the cause of death as injury to the head and neck.

The attack happened August 7, 2014, at the family’s home on Essex Street in St. Charles. The child’s grandmother, 58, was babysitting the girl and her two brothers. The grandmother, 58, had just finished feeding the girl and placed her on the floor right before the dog attacked.

The dog, an 80-pound pitbull mix, had had shown some aggressive behavior before, but had not attacked. The dog has since been euthanized.

The grandmother tried to pry the dog’s mouth off the child and the dog bit her hand. She lost tips of two fingers on each hand.

Read more from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

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19 comments

  • Joan

    How horribly tragic. The dog owner should have gotten rid of the dog IMMEDIATELY upon it showing aggression the first time. We had to get euthanize what was a wonderful irish setter. He was great with adults, but growled at our newborn. Never want to take a chance with your child.

    • Melissa

      Wow you are an idiot! Why would you not take that dog to stray rescue! It didn’t do anything to harm your kid! It could have found a wonderful home! Instead you ended the dogs life! You should be punished for animal cruelty! You don’t have a clue! I feel sorry for your kid! It is people like you who don’t belong having a dog or a kid!

      • revcort

        If the owner of the pit bull referenced in that article would have euthanized that animal and prevented the child from dying, people like you would have been more angry about that and would have wanted the owners arrested. It’s ridiculous when people value animal life over human life. Dogs have no souls. No we shouldn’t be cruel to animals or mistreat them but they are not even close to the value of a human life. There is no comparison. To the lady above who had the dog euthanized to prevent harm to your child, I have no problem with that. If the dog showed aggression and instability, giving it to another family is no good. Trust me, this family mourning the loss of their 22 month old daughter would give anything to go back and get rid of that animal. This world is becoming upside down. Our outrage over animal rights while we applaud a woman’s right to kill her child is moral anarchy. I hope this family can find some way to have peace. It will be very difficult.

    • Jan Morgan

      Disgusting. I would never euthanize my dog because of a growl. You are sick.

      You can train your dog out of bad habits. But I suppose if you are both heartless and lazy, killing an innocent animal is definitely a better option.

    • Jeanine

      You dont have one clue about dog rescue!! It would go to a home without children. Not in this case, but in the case of the Irish Setter.

  • Levi

    I sincerely hope that the parents are charged with something, either endangerment, neglect, something. To know that your dog has aggressive tendencies, to know what it’s capable if by it’s size and breed, and to allow it around a young child? Absolutely ridiculous. I have a 10lb Pomeranian and if he showed aggression to my 8 month old baby, or anyone else, he would be in a new home that night. Clearly someone loved a dog more than their children.

    • Michele

      Just because it is a pit means nothing. They are known to be aggressive and scary because those are the only stories we hear. Other breeds have been know to be dangerous as well but people don’t go blaming them for things. It’s how a dog is treated and raised just like a child is bad because of how they are treated and raised. I’m sure a closed minded person like you won’t understand that but it is the honest truth.

      • Sally

        No, actually, it’s not always how a dog is treated and raised. We had a boxer that we loved and who loved us for many many years. Then one day he suddenly got very aggressive. We were shocked. Dogs can suddenly act irrationally too, just like people. Canines can also suffer from mental disorders. Sometimes, like people, it’s just the way they’re wired. Animals are animals. Not always controllable or predictable.

  • Lindsey

    I haven’t seen a picture of the dog. Have they done a DNA test? I think our media too often throws out the word “pitbull” anytime there’s a dog attack these days. There are MANY dog breed that look like “pitbulls” but they’re neither American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, or Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
    People assume if a dog has a big square head, its automatically a pit.
    In this particular case I do blame the owner for negligence. If the dog showed aggression in the past,. she should have had it trained…. and if the aggressive behavior didn’t stop, then it should have been put down.

  • Amanda

    This is very tragic. it is no ones fault. The dog showed aggression, however it takes an experienced dog owner to be able to know when a dog has the potential to do harm. There are many different types of dog aggression. I myself own an aggressive pit mix. I have to be extremely cautious 24/7. I would not allow my dog around kids because I know he has the potential to do damage and he is unpredictable around kids. .The gma of these kids probably did not know just how dangerous this dog was. It is a tragedy and I believe no one is to blame. I am so sorry for this family’s loss.

  • Scarlet

    Hmmm, this story is different than the initial. the first said that she had put the kid to bed, this says she fed and put her on the floor. Funny what was the kid doing on the floor, just after eating. Was she wearing the Remanence of her meal by chance? There are so many holes in this story it is ridiculous!!!!!! And where is the photo of the dog!!!

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