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'Baby AJ' one year after being snatched from crib by family dog

By: Cheryl Glassford Email
By: Cheryl Glassford Email

It's been a year since he made the national news - a newborn, dragged into the woods by the family's wolf hybrid dog.

Little baby A.J. ended up in the hospital after the terrifyng ordeal last July at the family's Jessamine County home.

Today, he's a happy, healthy one year-old.

"He's a happy baby," said A.J.'s father, Michael Smith.

Looking at his smiling face, you'd never know what A.J. went through when he was just three days old.

"He enjoys a lot of people, playing, very active - very mobile," said Smith.

Last July Michael and his wife Chrissie had just brought him home from the hospital, when the family's Native American Dog, 'Dakota', dragged him from his crib, out the door, and into the woods.

A.J. miraculously survived, and this past weekend celebrated his first birthday.

It's been a hard year for his parents.

"It's been in phases - the first 3 months was pretty treacherous," said Smith, "petrified anytime anyone was around him because the last thing we could have is any kind of accident."

But now things are finally back to normal - thanks to a lot of support from friends and the community.

Michael has also written a book that he hopes will prevent similar incidents from happening to other parents.

He says the past year has been full of scrutiny from those who he says didn't know the whole story when at one point, they had considered bringing Dakota back into their home.

"It was really me that never wanted Dakota back but the rest of the family really did," said Smith, "there was a lot of criteria before we'd have considered that."

Dakota ended up being adopted by new undisclosed owners.

"She's happy, and the owner's just love her to pieces," Smith said.

Michael says now it's about moving forward with their family.

"(A.J.) made it through, and there was a reason he made it through, and I'm just fortunate and thankful for that," he said.

Smith's book is available on Amazon.com, and is titled Could it Happen to You? Baby AJ's story of being taken from his crib by the family dog, Dakota.

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