VALLEJO, Calif. (KTVU) - At least twice a day, Amanda Alkhatib has to have the gauze and bandages on her mangled arms changed. It’s a painful process, one she’s endured ever since she was brutally mauled by a pit bull in Vallejo.
“You have to tape it to your arm, and they slip off at night. It's really uncomfortable,” Alkhatib said as her husband gingerly but expertly rewrapped her arms in the kitchen of their home Thursday.
About two weeks ago, Alkhatib was bitten by a loose pit bull that's still at large.
"I don't know what I did to make him want to bite me,” she said.
Alkhatib was driving on Broadway near a shuttered Walmart store in Vallejo when she pulled over to close her hood, which had popped open. And that's when it happened. A pit bull came, seemingly out of nowhere and clamped its powerful viselike jaws onto her arm.
“I remember him grabbing a hold of my arm, and I fell back on my back and I was just thinking, 'Oh my god, I can't believe I'm being attacked by a pit bull.’"
She looked right into the dog’s gray eyes and had an idea.
“I was trying to jab him in the eyes when all of a sudden, I heard someone, you know, cussing and yelling."
A man pulled the dog away, saving her life. He disappeared after the attack as did the dog.
It’s not known if he owned the dog or was just a passerby.
Alkhatib says what she knows for sure is that she was viciously attacked by a gray, 100-pound pit bull with white around its mouth.
"And it was huge,” she said. “I remember looking down its back and just seeing really tight skin."
Despite serious wounds to her arms, she drove herself to the hospital. She's had four surgeries and will still need skin grafts. But even so, she says she has no ill will against pit bulls.
"I don't hate pit bulls. And I've gotten a lot of slack for that. There’s some pretty mean people who believe that I should hate them, and I just don't. I love animals."
Authorities believe the pit bull may belong to a homeless person who lives in an encampment nearby.
Solano County animal control officers have been visiting homeless camps in the area in hopes of finding the dog involved.
“For the victim, first and foremost, we are very concerned for her safety, and we want to do the best we can to get down to the bottom of this and hold whoever's responsible responsible, because it was terrible,” said sheriff’s Deputy Cully Pratt. “We hope she's doing all right."
Alkhatib says the owner needs to follow the rules like everyone else so that no one else, including children, are hurt.
"You should be licensed and have training to own this dog,” she said.
If the dog is found, it could be quarantined and, if deemed a danger to the public, be put down, authorities said.
There is a gofundme for Alkhatib's expenses