Atlanta girl, 5, loses ear, disfigured in pit bull mauling

A 5-year-old girl who was attacked by a pit bull Wednesday is recovering in an Atlanta hospital, reported.

Police say they were forced to shoot the dog, killing it.

Two neighbors, Dewayne Warner and Nicholas White, said that they heard screams and saw three dogs attacking the girl in her backyard.

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"I just ran around and I started kicking the fence trying to get the attention off her and on me," said Nicholas White.

Two of the dogs ran off, but a pit bull continued to attack the girl as her grandmother tried to fight it off.

"You couldn't even see her because the grandmother was on top of her and the dog just kept running from side to side just biting her," White said.

Warner grabbed a board and the men tried to get the dog off the girl.

"He got the 2 by 4 and hit it – it dazed and staggered for a minute then went right back and tried to attack her," White said.

Police arrived around 2:45 p.m. and shot and killed the pit bull.

"The officer said the dog was actually latched on to the child's face when he arrived. He did everything he could to pull that dog away and ultimately had to discharge his weapon," said Captain Dwayne Jones of the Griffin Police Department.

The child was transported to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston for treatment, police said. The child's grandmother also was treated for injuries suffered in the attack.

According to her mother, the 5-year-old girl lost an ear in the attack and is having reconstructive surgery for serious facial injuries.

The dog's body was transported to the Spalding County Animal Shelter to be checked for rabies.

The other two dogs were removed from the scene, authorities said.

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