A Pennsylvania mother was viciously mauled to death in front of her young son by her neighbor’s two Great Danes when they went over to feed them while the owner was away, authorities said.
Kristen Potter was killed after the two large dogs launched at her inside the neighbor’s home Thursday evening, Perry County Coroner Robert Ressler said.
First responders and police officers couldn’t reach the 38-year-old victim until animal control officers showed up and tranquilized the dogs, Ressler said.
Her young son joined her to feed the dogs while the owner was away, but rushed out for help after the dogs targeted Potter.
“He was present at the scene, but I don’t think he was there for much of it,” Ressler said, according to WGAL. “As soon as he saw the dogs starting to attack his mother, he ran across the road to have his brother call 911.”
The two dogs involved in Potter’s attack were later euthanized at a veterinarian’s office.
A third Great Dane was also inside the home, but was not part of the deadly mauling, officials said.
Brandon Zeiders, whose fiancée is Potter’s sister, said he was told by state police the two Great Danes might have been fighting and then turned their ire toward Potter when she intervened, according to Penn Live.
The dogs’ owner told the outlet she was “heartbroken” by the incident.
“I’m heartbroken, I’m in shock, I’m in disbelief and I just want to die,” Wendy Sabathne said. “I can’t believe this happened.”
Potter’s father, Bill Keefer, reportedly said one of the dogs previously bit Potter “two or three years go.”
Potter already endured her husband dying several years ago as well as the death of one of her sons, who was 11 when he was fatally struck as he rode his bike in 2020, family told Penn Live.
She was engaged and soon supposed to move to Florida with her future husband, relatives said.
The victim’s younger sister remembered the Centre Township mother of two as someone who had “a very beautiful personality.”
“When you’re around her, you just feel better,” sister Jennifer Keefer told WGAL. “When you talk to her, you just feel better.”
“She was just loveable to be around,” Keefer continued. “Everyone loved her.”