A four-month-old infant in Pennsylvania, Philadelphia had to undergo emergency surgery after being attacked and bitten on the face by a racoon inside a home. She required 65 stitches.
“She was lying on the floor across the room with blood all over her face, screaming and crying,” Ashley Rodgers, the baby’s mother, told WTXF-TV. “Her whole face was red.”
Rodgers said she made the horrifying discovery while taking her six-year-old to the bathroom, and heard a sound coming from her daughter’s bedroom. She said the raccoon had dragged her baby from her bed and across the room in the first floor apartment in Northern Philadelphia.
Police and emergency responders were called shortly before 11pm Wednesday and found the child with “cuts and scratches to her face.”
The baby was rushed to hospital where she received 65 stitches and a rabies shot. Doctors said the baby’s recovery could take up to a year. Fortunately, her eyesight wasn’t affected.
Sweet four-month-old is now out of surgery and recovering after being attacked by a raccoon inside a North Philly home. Homeowner has reportedly been renting out rooms but does not have a rental license, which is illegal in the city. pic.twitter.com/61kTemfCrj
— Anita Oh (@anita_oh) December 21, 2017
Tenants in the building had complained previously about a raccoon infestation. Rodgers, who had only just moved into the complex, told KYW she had alerted her landlord after spotting a raccoon on the day of the attack.
Neighbor Donna Wilson said raccoons are nothing new on the block, which has vacant buildings and empty lots.
“If you have holes outside or around your walls, I guess they can get in,” Wilson told WPVI.
A spokesperson for Philadelphia’s Licenses and Inspections Department told KYW the landlord appeared to not have a rental license.
“It needs to be shut down. Everybody needs to leave out of there,” Rodgers said. She intends to seek legal action following the attack.
“It is his (the landlord’s) responsibility. There’s no reason an animal should have gotten into the house with minors,” Samuel Black, the girl’s father, told KYW.
“It’s just ridiculous,” Black added. “My daughter could have lost her life.”
Animal control officers have set a trap for the raccoon, hoping to prevent attacks from happening again.