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Mom grabs animal after it bites daughter, dog

LAKELAND, Fla. – A  family and their dog are recovering after they say an otter entered their home and attacked last week.

Gwyneth Ewert, 17, had just let the family dog, Scooter, outside their house around 5:30 a.m. Feb. 4 when she heard him barking and screeching on the back porch. When she opened the door, Scooter ran inside, and an otter was chasing him.

The teen’s mother, biology teacher Casina Ewert, said she was awakened by her daughter’s screams and rushed to the kitchen.

“She tried to shut the door, and it pushed its way in, hissing and screaming,” Casina Ewert said. The otter turned and bit the teen on the leg and attacked Scooter, a 2-year-old French bulldog, in the living room and dining room.

“There was blood on the floor, the otter was hissing, and my daughter was screaming. It was going to kill my dog and had already bitten my daughter,” Ewert said.

Casina Ewert's dog, a 2-year-old French bulldog named Scooter, will be quarantined for the next few months after being bitten by an otter.

The mother grabbed the otter by its tail and held it up in the air. “And it was thrashing around and trying to bite me,” she said.

She ran to the back door, threw the otter outside and slammed the door.

Ewert said she teaches about otters in biology, but because of the commotion, she didn’t know immediately it was an otter until she had it by its tail.

“That is when I looked at it and realized it was a crazy otter,” she said.

The whole ruckus lasted about three minutes, she said.

“I would do anything to save my kid,” she said.

Gwyneth Ewert suffered a deep bite from an otter that chased and attacked her dog as the two ran inside their home.

The immediate concern, she said, was rabies. Her daughter found out she was allergic to the rabies vaccine when she was bitten by a stray dog while doing mission work in Nicaragua. She received a rabies shot then and was hospitalized.

“She goes into anaphylaxis shock, her throat closes and she turns white. The LRMC (Lakeland Regional Medical Center) staff knew of her past reaction, and we took every precaution when giving the vaccine. She did not react (this time),” Ewert said.

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