Police have determined which dog fatally attacked a baby boy at his family's south-side home and now are trying to figure out what led a Labrador puppy to bite the child, officials said Wednesday.



 

  Police have determined which dog fatally attacked a baby boy at his family's south-side home and now are trying to figure out what led a Labrador puppy to bite the child, officials said Wednesday.

Investigators weren't sure on Monday whether the two-month-old puppy or a small pug had inflicted the injuries that led to the death of 2-month-old Zane Earles. Two days later, they said they had concluded that the pug wasn't involved in Zane's death.

Zane's father, who recently had moved into the household, told police that he left the home at 8 a.m. Monday, and the grandfather said he left 30 minutes later.

Both told investigators that the baby was fine when they left, Officer Leland Ashley said.

Initial reports indicated that the baby's 17-year-old mother and grandmother were sleeping in their bedrooms on the west side of the house and that the infant was in a baby swing in a dining room on the east side of the house, according to police.

Zane's mother found his lifeless body at 10:30 a.m., according to police.

The child's mother and grandmother were taken by ambulance to St. Francis Hospital after finding the infant.

Tina Wells, a spokeswoman for Emergency Medical Services Authority, said she could not discuss the nature of their symptoms or treatment but said they were admitted to the hospital in "fair" condition. Both have been released.

Family members have declined interviews, and police have not identified them by name.

After responding to the accident, two paramedics and the dispatcher who took the call took the rest of the day off and were assigned to a routine "critical incident stress management" exercise, Wells said.

"It's basically a debriefing," she said. "It lets people talk in a safe environment about what they saw, what they heard and what's bothering them about it."

The puppy was euthanized that day at the request of police, who wanted to recover physical evidence from the dog, Ashley said.

"Based upon the available evidence at this time, it appears to be a tragic accident," Ashley said.

The cause and manner of Zane's death is still pending. It could be several weeks before all the tests are conducted and a report is completed, state Medical Examiner's Office spokesman Randy Saffell said.

Police have declined to release details about the baby's injuries, but they apparently were significant enough that he was pronounced dead at the scene.

If police approve it, the middle-aged pug and two cats that were removed from the home will be returned to Zane's family, Tulsa Animal Shelter Manager Jean Letcher said.

 

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.