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Child recovering from pit bull attack
Third-grader was injured by dog in home; animal now under quarantine
0421dog-Adrianna  Adkins
Adrianna Adkins

Adrinna Adkins is in stable condition and watching cartoons in her Atlanta hospital room after she was attacked by a pit bull Thursday afternoon.

“She’s up and alert and talking and telling me what happened. She doesn’t seem to be scared,” said her mother, Spring Adkins.

The third-grade student at Enota Multiple Intelligences Academy told her mother the dog attacked her to get to the family cat.

Adrinna said she locked the dog in one of the bedrooms while she brought the cat inside.

The dog was able to jump up on the door and open it. He lunged for the cat but bit the 9-year-old instead.

“He just kept biting her. But she was able to get him off,” Spring Adkins said.

Adrinna ran from her apartment at McEver Vineyards Apartments in Gainesville toward the office building for help.

A maintenance man called 911. After rescuers arrived, a helicopter was summoned to fly her to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston.

Spring Adkins said her daughter remembers everything that happened in surprising detail, including the helicopter ride that made her feel sick.

“I thought she would kind of forget, but she remembers everything,” Spring Adkins said.

Doctors were able to mend most of the tears and bite marks, but a portion of Adrinna’s right arm is still badly injured, Spring Adkins said.

They also are closely monitoring blood flow in her left arm because an artery may have been damaged.

“She’s feeling all right but she’s very well-medicated,” Spring Adkins said.

Adrinna is expected to stay in the hospital for at least another week.

Doctors want to keep her on IV antibiotics for at least another three days to be sure she doesn’t get an infection, Spring Adkins said.

When she is released from the hospital, she’ll still need to undergo physical therapy.

“I just think of the scars that she’s going to have and the recovery process and the pain until she’s healed,” Spring Adkins said.

The brindle pit bull belonged to Dustin Bland, a friend who has been staying with the family since Sunday.

Bland told Hall County Animal Control officers he recently rescued the dog from its previous owner.

Spring Adkins said the attack shocked her because the dog seemed to be a well-behaved and loving animal, playing with the children and even sleeping in their beds.

“This dog, I don’t know the history of it, but he seemed to be a good-natured dog,” Spring Adkins said.

She said she explained to her three children that it was important to be careful around the dog and to keep the two animals separated.

Bland released ownership of the animal after the attack.

Cpl. Kevin Holbrook, spokesman with the Gainesville Police Department, said charges are unlikely since the dog was confined within the apartment and not running loose.

The dog is now being held in quarantine for 10 days at Hall County Animal Control. The dog was up to date on rabies vaccinations but state law requires a quarantine to ensure he is not infected with the virus.

Mike Ledford, Hall County Animal Control director, said the dog’s future is uncertain but he will not be able to be adopted because of the situation.

“This was one of those instances where it was an in-house bite. I’m not sure what they could have done to prevent it,” Ledford said.