Family members are asking for support as a Humboldt County woman remains in the hospital after a dog attack caused serious injuries two weeks ago.
Candis Danielson, a Brookings-Harbor High School grad who moved to Humboldt County after graduation, had gone over to a neighbor’s house to help him with a generator he was borrowing, according to Shiann Davis, Danielson’s sister.
“I don’t blame her for going and helping her neighbor,” Davis said. “She just has such a big heart.”
The accident came when two dogs got out of the house in Myers Flat and attacked Danielson, mauling her legs and knocking her over, according to Davis.
“The dogs ended up dragging her by her legs underneath his trailer,” Davis said.
There, the dogs severely injured both of Danielson’s legs. Sheriff’s deputies arrived on scene to find Danielson with “serious and extensive injuries related to the attack” and had to perform life-saving efforts, according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.
One other victim was treated for bite-related injuries nearby after attempting to assist Danielson, and the dogs have been taken into custody pursuant to county code, according to the sheriff’s office.
Since then, Danielson has been at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Eureka, awake off and on and under constant monitoring by doctors.
According to Danielson, Davis’ right leg has been amputated a few inches below her knee, and further amputations on either leg may be necessary as doctors watch the progress of her healing and any resulting infections. She might have to move to a hospital in San Francisco, depending on the progress of her condition.
Fortunately, Davis said Danielson, a mother of five kids, has been staying strong during the times she’s awake in the hospital.
“She sounds good, and she’s come to terms as much as she can with what happened,” Davis said. “She’s so strong, and we love her so much.”
But, because of the COVID-19 pandemic and hospital restrictions, Danielson’s family members have only had a few chances to see her. They’ve found ways to drop things off at the hospital for her and connect through phone and video calls.
“It’s been such a challenge to just not have the chance to hold her hand and see her face,” Davis said.
Since Danielson has been unconscious for much of the time since the incident, Davis said the family hasn’t decided yet if it will pursue legal action against the owner of the dogs for the accident.
Still, Danielson and her family have seen an outpouring of support from neighbors, community members and complete strangers, according to Davis.
The family set up a GoFundMe website to raise funds for Danielson’s medical bills and possible legal expenses, which has garnered over $40,000 in donations and on which Davis posts updates about Danielson’s condition. The site can be seen at https://www.gofundme.com/f/29kfh71stc?qid=2a23826798cad103dbe208216cc27c35.
“It’s been incredible. It’s been such an outpour of support and kindness,” Davis said of the support.
It’s also brought the family closer together, according to Davis, who lives about 45 minutes away.
“It’s just one of those eye-opening things you wish didn’t happen to get you here,” Davis said.