An 84-year-old man was taken by Med-Flight to a Boston hospital after his daughter's dog attacked him Friday at her West Gloucester home, police and fire officials said.
Gloucester Fire Captain Barry Aptt said that police transported the dog, a mixed German Shepherd rescue dog, to a veterinarian for standard rabies testing.
The man suffered "massive trauma" to his arms, legs and back, causing severe bleeding and subsequent blood loss, Aptt said. Firefighters and emergency personnel worked to slow the bleeding as they waited for a helicopter to transport the man to Boston's Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital, Aptt said.
"We called Med-Flight as soon as we saw him," Aptt said. "We went through every kind of dressing that we had on the truck for bandaging," he said. The man, who was reportedly in shock from "massive blood loss," became responsive as emergency personnel treated his wounds, Aptt said. Neither police nor fire officials would release the man's name Friday night.
According to Aptt and Gloucester Police, the man has been staying at his daughter's home at 40 Lawndale Circle, and his daughter left him home alone there for a few hours Friday. Shortly after 2 p.m., the daughter returned home and found her father, wounded and bleeding, prompting her to immediately call 911, according to Aptt.
An ambulance transported the man from his daughter's house to nearby Burke Park, where the Med-Flight helicopter touched down on the outfield. Neighbors watched as emergency personnel carried the man on a stretcher into the still-running helicopter, and the helicopter rose back up over the field, flinging debris into the air.
The procedure of loading a patient without turning off the helicopter, called hot-loading, cuts transportation time, according to Aptt.
Meanwhile, at 40 Lawndale Circle, two police officers carried a large portable dog kennel toward the echoing barks in the backyard of the home. The German Shepherd mix's future is uncertain at this time, according to police.
The German Shepherd bit the same man once about a year ago, but the injury was far less severe than those caused by today's attack, according to Aptt. No one knew what set the dog off or caused the Friday attack, Aptt said.
"Today, it just went crazy on him," Aptt said.
Another, smaller dog was present at the time of the attack but was not involved in the mauling, according to Aptt.
Police Friday night did not disclose whether the man was inside or outside of the home when the dog attacked him.
Marjorie Nesin can be reached at 978-283-7000, x3451, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.