A 5-year-old boy in Michigan was viciously mauled by two dogs last week, leaving him with severe facial injuries that required extensive reconstructive surgery.
Little Hunter Callender was playing with his younger sister outside his grandmother’s house in Grand Rapids on May 12 when two pit bulls jumped out of a neighbor’s car and lunged at him, according to a GoFundMe page set up for the family.
The dog attack left Callender with several broken bones and gashes on his face, neck and head.
The boy’s mother Ashley White told WZZM-TV that her son has been struggling since the mauling.
“He’s been pretty down. He’s pretty traumatized by the whole event,” White said. “He doesn’t know what to think. I mean, he’s only 5 and that’s quite an event to go through.”
Callender’s jawbone, cheek bone and eye socket were each broken and his right eye has double vision due to the damage. Doctors also said the break in his jawbone is so bad that some of his adult teeth will fail to properly develop, according to the GoFundMe.
The youngster has already undergone multiple operations, including a five-hour reconstructive surgery in which plates and screws were implanted in his face. Next the young boy must have his jaw wired shut and a feeding tube inserted to allow the bones to heal.
The boy’s father said his recovery will likely be lifelong as he will require further operations as his bones grow in an interview with the local outlet The Daily News.
“We are only still at the beginning of his long road,” Andrew Callender said. “We would like people to realize the extent of how serious something like this can be and how much suffering our son is going to go through for years to come.”
A family friend has set up a GoFundMe page to help Callender’s parents cover the costs of his medical care. The fundraiser has received more than $13,000 in donations as of Thursday.
The two pit bulls who mauled the five-year-old have been euthanized and their owner is facing criminal charges of failing to control a dangerous animal, according to The Daily News.