A 72-year-old woman is in critical condition after a pack of dogs attacked her Wednesday morning at a park in Phoenix, police said.
The five Bullmastiff/pit bull mixes have since been euthanized at the request of their owner, according to Maricopa County Animal Care and Control.
Phoenix police and fire crews responded to the attack about 5:30 a.m. at Barrios Unidos Park when they found Elia Gutierez, who had been collecting cans as she regularly does in the area, said Officer James Holmes, a Phoenix police spokesman. She sustained multiple, severe dog bites, he said.
A witness saw the pack of dogs attack the woman and alerted police, said Phoenix firefighter Dan Waltuch.
Packs of dogs have been known to run through the streets of the surrounding neighborhood, he said.
One of the dogs attacked police officers at the scene, prompting an officer to fire a round that hit the dog's mouth, Holmes said. Shortly after, the dogs ran home, where their owner handed them over to Animal Control, Holmes said.
Those who live in the neighborhood said it is not unusual to see packs of large dogs roaming around and behaving aggressively. Michael Saenz, 47, said a few months ago, a pack of dogs dug into his backyard and fought with his two pit bulls.
"I had to build a berm around my backyard fence just to keep them out," he said. "My dogs had huge gashes on their faces, which we had to treat with antibiotics."
Demetrius Evans, 27, who has lived in the neighborhood for a decade, said the unprovoked attacks from packs of dogs are something he has encountered. Two pit bulls wandered into his home and killed his small Chihuahua.
None of the dogs from the morning attack appear to have been licensed, said Melissa Gable, a spokeswoman for Animal Care and Control.
They will be tested for rabies at a state lab this week, she said.