A 2-year-old boy was viciously mauled to death by a pack of wild African Painted dogs after he fell into the animals’ enclosure at the Pittsburgh Zoo Sunday morning.
Maddox Derkosh had “no chance” after he lost his balance and tumbled off the railing where his mother placed him to stand.
Maddox apparently fell head first, landing in a netting which was designed to catch small objects, not humans. Maddox bounced off the netting and onto the ground near the dogs.
The above simulation graphic by ABC News shows how Maddox stood on the railing before he fell.
Zoo officials said the 11-foot fall didn’t kill Maddox before the dogs disemboweled the little boy. As the dogs attacked the screaming child, zoo officials fired tranquilizer darts and a police officer opened fire, killing one of the wild dogs.
“Unfortunately, the dogs were in pack mentality and not responding to zookeepers efforts to control them,” zoo officials said in a statement.
The African Painted Dogs are the most deadly predatory doglike animals of the Serengeti Plain.
Both parents were sedated after the noon accident on Sunday. “[The parents] went nowhere without Maddox. I cannot imagine the dark cloud that is following them,” said family neighbor Rachel Majcher.
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