Central Point boy recovering

A 9-year-old Central Point boy is expected to make a full recovery after being mauled by two dogs Tuesday inside his father's home.

Timothy Allen Hedges, 34, said his son was at home playing with his toy gun Thursday after he was treated for bites and scratches from the attack. Ashtin Hedges was inside the home in 100 block of East Gregory Road when the dogs attacked.

Timothy Hedges said his two dogs began fighting and his son stepped in to break them apart. This led to the attack that left the boy with a head injury that will require plastic surgery.

"It was a terrible accident," Hedges said. "I do feel a lot of guilt about it because my son was hurt."

Hedges said he stepped outside for just a few minutes to help a friend move his truck that had broken down. The dogs began fighting soon after he left, he said.

"Aside from my son's injuries, of course, the worst part is knowing I was just outside the door and couldn't hear the fight going on inside my house," Hedges said.

Hedges said the dogs are 8-month-old bull terrier and American bulldog mixes. He said they each weigh about 40 pounds. They were inside the house with their mother, a bull terrier, when they began fighting.

"These dogs have never attacked anyone before," Hedges said. "In fact, I've been trying to find homes for them."

Hedges disputes reports from the Jackson County Sheriff's Department that there were five large dogs living inside the house. He claims there were three, the two that attacked and their mother.

"I feel like I have been accused of being an irresponsible parent," Hedges said. "But these two dogs have never, ever done anything like this before. They are not violent dogs."

Jackson County Animal Control officers have collected the pit bulls and are quarantining them for 10 days to check them for rabies and other issues that might have led to an attack, said Jackson County Animal Care and Control Director Colleen Macuk.

During this 10-day period, animal control officers will conduct an investigation into the case and will determine the dogs' fate, Macuk said.

Hedges hopes to claim the dogs should they be released after their quarantine. He will not allow them back into his home.

"I want to split them apart and find good homes for each of them," Hedges said.

He said he will give them to mature owners with no children.

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 541-776-4471; or e-mail cconrad@mailtribune.com.

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