Family mourns baby boy mauled to death by family dog while on trampoline with mom in East Hartford

The family of a 1-year-old boy who died after being mauled by a family dog in East Hartford on Wednesday afternoon is in mourning as they grapple with the loss just before the baby’s first birthday.

Officers were called to a home on Fuller Avenue around 3 p.m. on Wednesday for a 1-year-old child who was bitten several times by a dog, according to Officer Marc Caruso of the East Hartford Police Department.

According to a GoFundMe created for the family, the baby — named Lennox — was bitten by the family’s Dalmatian while the baby and his mother were on a trampoline.

The attack occurred just before the boy’s first birthday party was planned to take place at a local Chuck E. Cheese, a woman who identified as the boy’s aunt wrote on GoFundMe.

“This is my sister’s first and only son, my first and only nephew,” the woman said.

The woman said she was on the phone with her sister when the attack occurred.

“Believe it or not it was the family dog (and) never in a million years would we have seen this coming,” the woman said.

Caruso confirmed that the dog was the family dog and the mother and baby were on a trampoline when the incident occurred.

Police said officers and fire department personnel performed life-saving measures at the scene. The infant was transported by Ambulance Service of Manchester to an area hospital.

“Despite the valiant efforts of medical professionals, the child succumbed to his injuries,” Caruso said.

Thompson G. Page, attorney and co-founder of the Center for Animal Litigation in Hartford, said that most animal bites are the result of an animal feeling threatened or fearful. It is not known what prompted the dog’s behavior in this case.

“They communicate that they are scared about their situation by biting,” Page said, no matter the breed or relationship to the human they may bite.

“This is happening in a split second and this is happening with a complete instinctual reaction to surviving,” he said.

Police said the incident is under investigation. As of now, two dogs have been removed from the home and are in quarantine, according to Caruso.

“There were two dogs involved however one was the primary aggressor,” Caruso said, adding later that it was a larger-sized mixed-breed dog.

“Out of respect for the family’s privacy and in consideration of the sensitivity of this matter, we are not releasing the child’s name,” Caruso said.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and loved ones as they mourn their loss. May they find solace and strength during this challenging time.”