St. Petersburg, Florida -- A child and her father were attacked by two dogs that had been in the family since they were puppies.
St. Pete Police say on Thursday evening, John Faucette was in his living room while his four-year-old daughter was in her bedroom playing with the two family dogs which were Labrador and Pit Bull mixes.
Suddenly, Faucette heard his daughter scream and when he ran into her bedroom he found her bleeding from the face saying one of the dogs had bitten her.
According to reports, Faucette grabbed his daughter and stood up at which point both dogs began attacking him. He fought them off, kicking and punching his way into the bathroom, and shut the door.
When Faucette's wife arrived home he left the bathroom holding his daughter and using her painting easel to fend off the attacking dogs so that he, his wife and daughter could escape.
When paramedics and police arrived, they found the family outside the home and the two dogs inside growling, barking and attempting to push the door open. Police spokesman, Mike Puetz, says "Other paramedics were actually at the front door holding these dogs at bay. The dogs were trying to get out. Apparently the latch on the door was broken. They actually had to hold the door back to keep the dogs back."
Faucette said that he has had the dogs since they were pups and they had never shown any aggression towards anyone before.
A Pinellas County Animal Services officer arrived and managed to capture the two dogs with a catch pole. Both animals remained highly aggressive during the process.
The four-year-old was transported to All Children's Hospital for treatment of her facial wounds and she is going to be okay.
Friday morning Pinellas County Animal Services put the dogs down when they became aggressive towards the workers trying to feed them. John Faucette had already allowed animal services to take the animals and he gave them permission to be humanely euthanized.
Some neighbors in the area were stunned over what happened. Carol Cates and Rob Michel say they're careful not to leave their rottweilers Sassy and Mocha alone with their baby boy Riley.
They say they used to have a red nose Pitt Bull named Boosie and say they only gave him away because their family was growing and they didn't have enough room for all the pets. Rob says, "I'd rather have my child than my dog."
John Hohenstern, Senior Animal Control Officer, highly recommends parents supervise children when they're around pets. He also says that if a parent cannot be there at the time they should separate the child from the pet.