The kid was found unconscious under a peach tree after being attacked by four 12-week-old puppies.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on June 16, 2022. It has since been updated.
Trigger warning: This article contains graphic images that some readers may find distressing
A two-year-old was found unconscious and “possibly missing an eye” after she was mauled by a pack of her family's puppies. Little Felicity's family was preparing for their "housewarming party/double birthday bash" earlier in June, along with the family's four 12-week-old puppies when the tragedy occurred, reports PEOPLE. "We had the puppies for 3 weeks and they'd never given us any reason to not allow our children to play with them," said Sierra Michele, the child's Mom. Sierra Michele left her husband with the four kids as she went to take a shower. After coming out, she guided her eldest daughter, who was sitting on the couch, to tell their dad to keep an eye on the kids as she leaves for the nearest Dollar Tree store in Bakersfield, California, which was an hour's drive from their residence in Onyx. Michele wanted to get presents for the party. She then later called her husband on her way out to tell him she'd be gone for about three hours.
"I told him where the kids were and asked, 'You have Felicity, right?' He said, 'No, I think she followed everyone inside, I don't see her,'" wrote Sierra Michele in a GoFundMe campaign description. She told her friend that she had to "call Sam because my husband doesn't have Felicity." Her daughter then called her and though the call was breaking up because of spotty reception, she was able to make out the words, "Dad…fel… bleeding.. hospital..'' Sierra Michele turned the car around. "As we flipped the U-turn I saw our van racing down the road and my husband waving us to follow. I called him and he said, 'I think Felicity's missing an eye! I found her unconscious laying under the peach tree! Call 911!'" wrote Sierra Michele, adding that she had no other information at this point.
"They kept me on the phone until I got to the hospital where we concluded that the only thing in the backyard that could have caused that kind of damage to her was the puppies," she continued. She later posted an update on the campaign page. Sierra Michele said the four dogs ate Felicity's "ear and mutilated her face, neck, and mainly upper body." Little Felicity was life-flighted to a children's hospital in Fresno, where she underwent three hours of plastic surgery and is "recovering beautifully," but will face numerous operations over time.
Sierra Michele is now hoping her family's tragic story will spread awareness about the dangers of Littermate Syndrome, a serious behavioral condition in which young dogs bond too tightly with one another, which can cause fear of people and other dogs, extreme separation anxiety, issues when encountering new situations when alone, and more, according to West Suburban Humane Society. "PLEASE help us spread the word about this potentially deadly issue. The more families know the better. We don’t want what happened to our family to happen to anyone else ever again. The only way to help make sure of that is to bring light to this issue. Spread the word about Littermate Syndrome!" the campaign page read.
"Both parents (and every family member) have accepted full responsibility for what happened and actions have already been taken to eliminate any future occurrences," Felicity's grandmother, Linnea, wrote. "They are an incredibly loving and devoted family and always have been."
So far, the family's GoFundMe has raised more than $17,000 to help cover Felicity's medical expenses.
Cover image source: GoFundMe