Owners Flown to Hospital After Dogs Attack

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Two people in Schuylkill County were flown to the hospital after being mauled by their own dogs.

Neighbors said it happened Friday night in Pottsville, many of them watching as emergency crews had to rescue the victims from their home.

Police tape blocked off access to one apartment in Pottsville and a “Beware of Dog” sign is posted in the window.

Neighbors said that's what officers left behind after responding to a dog mauling inside this home Friday night.

“When I came up the dogs were inside with the people,” said neighbor Bob Nelson. “My man was getting drug out by the ambulance, blood all over him, the lady, she had blood on her hand, they had it all wrapped up.”

Police did not have much information about the attack inside the home on Mount Hope Avenue, but neighbors said the victims are Donna Matthias and Heriberto Torres.

They said the couple's two pit bulls were fighting and they were trying to pull them apart when the dogs turned on them.

Matthias and Torres were flown to Lehigh Valley Hospital.

A hospital spokesperson said Matthias was treated and released, Torres remains hospitalized in stable condition.

Next door neighbor Lynn Salabsky has a pit bull of her own.

She said she cannot believe the dogs would do this.

“It was really scary, it was unbelievable,” said Salabsky. “The two dogs fight. They fought one other time before this but they were able to break them up, just terrible.”

Pottsville does have an aggressive dog ordinance, which went into effect last year after numerous incidents of pit bull attacks.

Owners will be fined if a dog attacks, after a third time, it must be put to sleep.

Many in the neighborhood said they are concerned after this latest attack.

“With kids you don't really need pit bulls around,” said one neighbor. “They're too temperamental."

Salabsky said this is a tragedy for both the victims and their dogs.

“I know they're going to be devastated. They love those dogs,” said Salabsky

When Pottsville city officials enacted the dangerous dog ordinance last year they said it would apply to any overly aggressive dog.

This law does not target specific breeds.