Seven-year-old child attacked by pit bull


OKEECHOBEE — A 7-year-old Okeechobee boy was attacked by a Pitbull as he played outside his home on July 6. According to his mother, Brittany Sills, the little boy, and his friends were playing in a field at the edge of the mobile home park where they live when the dog escaped his leash and ran over to the boys, grabbing hold of little Brantley.

Brantley was running across the field when the dog attacked, she said. “This is the dog’s third attack,” said Sills.

The families all live in Big Water RV Park, and the field is the area where the children are allowed to play, she explained.

Brantley was rushed to Raulerson Hospital where wounds on his arms and legs were treated. As he was about to be released to go home, the medical staff discovered another bite on the inside of one of his thighs. They immediately transferred him to Lawnwood Medical Center, where he was operated on due to the severity of the injury to his leg. “He had a whole chunk taken out of his thigh,” said his mom. Brantley stayed at Lawnwood for two days after the surgery to make sure the site did not get infected. The hospital released him with instructions on how to care for the wound.

Justin Chism, who is engaged to Sills, expressed thankfulness that it did not cut the main artery on his thigh. “It was very close.”

While Sills was rushing Brantley to the hospital,  Chism was dealing with the aftermath, talking to animal control and the dog owner while caring for the family’s other children. Chism said the animal control officer told him she dealt with that dog on the first two biting instances as well. He went on to say animal control told him the woman was asked to leave the last park she lived in because her dog bit an elderly lady who was walking down the street. “They are lucky, I held myself back,” he said. “I wanted to deal with it myself, but I didn’t.”

The family is struggling financially due to the medical costs. In addition, Chism lost his job during the situation. He said his boss told him to stay home to take care of the seven other children, but then when he tried to go back to work, the boss said there was no work available for him.

If you would like to help, there is a Gofundme for the family.

Dog attack GoFundMe

Brantley is doing well and looking forward to starting first grade at Everglades Elementary School soon.

According to information from the Okeechobee County Animal Control, the dog was quarantined for 10 days and was humanely euthanized after the quarantine period. 

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