A four-year old boy from Layton, Utah lost his right hand after it was bitten off by a neighbor’s Husky earlier this March.

The young child put a sock over his arm and playfully stuck it underneath the fence to reach over his neighbor’s backyard, where two huskies live, according to Jason Cook, the public information officer of Layton City Police, told PEOPLE.

(Photo screenshot from: KSLTV.com)

According to local media reports, the boy’s father was inside their home when the incident happened. He dialed 911 when he saw what happened to his son.

Cook explained that the child’s entire hand, two to three inches of his forearm, was missing. A helicopter flew him to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City and sadly, after attempting to reattach the boy’s arm, 8-10 emergency respondents who tended to him failed to do so.

One of two Siberian huskies bit off the hand of a Utah boy, age 4, after he stuck his arm through a fence to try to play with the animals. Layton Fire Department Battalion Chief Jason Cook is shown demonstrating how much of the child’s arm was lost in the bite, along with his hand (Photo screenshot from: KSLTV.com)

According to the dogs’ owners, their huskies were not aggressive before the incident.

“I think this is one of those innocent child play moments where the dogs have probably been in the backyard many, many times. He’s seen them and maybe even done something similar with them before, but for whatever reason, this one kind took a tragic turn today,” Cook added.

Currently, the dogs are in custody of animal control officers and are still pending investigation.

Why do dogs bite?

According to American Veterinary Medical Association, dogs bite as a reaction to something. They might have been triggered, scared, or startled, which cause them to bite as part of their natural reaction.

There are proper ways to approach dogs, especially when you are not the owner of the animal. Proper education on handling them is needed to avoid dog bites and any other tragic events.