HIGHLAND TWP. (WWJ) – A young girl and her mother have been injured in a dog attack in western Oakland County.

The Oakland County Sheriff’s Office says it happened Thursday evening outside a home in the 3200 block of North Hickory Ridge Road in Highland Township.

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According to investigators, when a 7-year-old girl opened the gate to a pen, two of the family’s dogs knocked her to the ground and began to bite her. The girl’s 34-year-old mother was able to get the dogs off her daughter, but not before she was also bitten badly on her arm.

The girl was sustained deep bite wound to her neck and had trouble breathing, sheriff’s officials said. She was airlifted to University of Michigan Mott Children’s Hospital where she was listed in critical condition — but she is expected to survive.

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The sheriff’s office noted that the child’s coat was shredded in the attack.

Oakland County Animal Control took custody of one of the dogs involved, but other escaped and remained at large on Friday.

The sheriff’s office said it turns out the family takes in rescue dogs and kept seven in a pen outside the house. Four of the others were signed over to Animal Control.

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The incident remains under investigation. No names have been released.