Posted on May 19, 2012 by Ilana Reisner
“Newborn killed after dog attack at home” is the headline that came across my desktop today. As always, I read the media reports with care to understand what the circumstances were and to deduce, if possible, what risks those circumstances might present to others. This is an immeasurable tragedy and my heart goes out to the baby’s family, but maybe we can learn — truly changing parenting behavior and the way we manage dogs with children — as a result.
In this case, the 3-day-old infant, Makayla Darnell, was left in a swing while her mother and grandmother were in the kitchen preparing to feed her. According to the article, “The two women would only have been a few feet away” from the baby. Clearly, proximity alone was not enough. They heard the baby cry and found her severely injured. Details about the swing have not been provided, but I found it interesting to read – once again! – that an infant dog-bite fatality occurred while the baby was in a swing.