Four dogs that mauled a 42-year-old man to death at a Jurupa Valley home where he was working on a project for the owner were euthanized, authorities said Wednesday.
Mateo Salvador of Riverside was fatally attacked about 6:50 a.m. Tuesday at a house in the 10800 block of Bellegrave Avenue, near Martin Street, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department and the Department of Animal Services.
“This is a tragedy, and our thoughts go out to this gentleman’s family and loved ones,” Department of Animal Services Director Erin Gettis said.
Agency spokesman John Welsh said the four canines — three Belgian Malinois and a Cane Corso — were impounded at the Western Riverside County Animal Shelter in Jurupa Valley and were humanely euthanized Tuesday afternoon.
“All four will be tested for rabies, per our usual protocols,” Welsh told City News Service. “That is something we do for severe bite cases.”
Authorities said Salvador was at the property to perform work on behalf of the owner, who had converted the house into a business.
“It was reported that the victim did some prior work … and had been at the property previously without incident,” Welsh said.
He said the dogs’ owner was not at the location Tuesday morning.
Sheriff’s deputies are still investigating the circumstances behind the mauling and what might have triggered it. According to Welsh, the victim was heard screaming, prompting a neighbor to call 911. Deputies arrived minutes later and discovered Salvador gravely injured.
Sheriff’s officials said that he was taken to Riverside Community Hospital, where he died at 8:15 a.m. Tuesday.
The owner reached the location within several hours and immediately surrendered the four dogs to animal control officers, Welsh said.
Gettis said that the mauling serves as “a horrific reminder for dog owners to be vigilant in keeping communities, dogs and people safe.”