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Toddler bitten in the face while trying to hug a restrained dog

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According to the Denver Channel, a toddler was bitten on Sunday evening in Commerce City, Colo., while trying to hug a restrained dog.

Around 7:30 p.m., a 19-month-old boy walked up to a large dog who was on a tether which was attached to a pole. The child apparently tried to hug the dog and the dog lashed out, causing severe injuries to the toddler's face and neck.

According to USA Today, the dog belongs to a transient who had set up camp in an empty parking lot off of U.S. Highway 85. The little boy and his mother were also reported to be among a group of individuals who were camping in the area between stops on a cross-country journey; the dog did not belong to the child's mother.

The boy's injuries were severe enough that he was rushed to Children's Hospital, but he is expected to survive his wounds.

The dog who lashed out died after animal control officers caught him with a catch-pole. Officials report that the dog fought the restraint and died from asphyxiation during the struggle.

Children should never be allowed to approach and hug a dog because many dogs react to the gesture in a negative manner - especially when approached at eye level, something which young children cannot help given their size.

The individual who owned the dog in this situation is facing pending charges following the incident.

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