Neighbors try to stop dog mauling with sticks, gutter, chair

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SPRING HILL, Fla. (AP) — Neighbors used sticks, pieces of a gutter and a lawn chair in an attempt to stop a pack of dogs from mauling a Florida woman, who was critically injured in the attack that lasted at least five minutes, authorities said.

Friday's attack only stopped when firefighters arrived at the home in Spring Hill and used their equipment to disperse the dogs, the Hernando County Sheriff's Office said in a news release.

The woman, who wasn't identified, was in critical condition at a hospital. Two neighbors who tried to intervene and were bit by the dogs also were taken for treatment at a hospital. Three other neighbors refused medical treatment for minor injuries, the sheriff's office said.

“What I saw I’ll never be able to unsee,” neighbor Kathy Gillespie told WTSP-TV.

The woman was in her backyard with her small dog when four or five dogs in a neighboring house saw them through a sliding glass door that wasn't properly closed, authorities said. The neighbor's dogs then escaped from the house and attacked them, the Hernando County Sheriff's Office said.

Animal control officers removed seven dogs from the neighbor's house, even though no more than five of them were involved in the attack, the sheriff's office said.

Spring Hill is about 40 miles (64 kilometers) north of Tampa.

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