A dog attacked and bit a 15-month-old child in the face in a horrific incident in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, on Saturday. Local police were reported about the attack that took place along the 300 block of West Spruce Street in the city.

Officials said the child was bitten on the forehead and even inside his mouth. The toddler was rushed to a hospital and treated at a trauma center. The condition of the child remained unclear as of early Monday. 

The child's father told police he was watching the dog when the canine attacked his boy, following which he shot and killed the animal. According to Police Chief Jerry Speziale, no charges were filed at this time.

"We are praying for the safe recovery of the child at this time," Speziale said, adding that the child was seriously injured in the incident and probably would require surgery. But authorities believe the injuries are not life-threatening.

Officials with the Luzerne County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) told local media that it was unlikely that a dog would attack unprovoked.

"Most of them will show you stress signals, like tail tucking, yawning, lip-smacking. That's all signs that a dog is trying to show you they're stressed," Amber Reese, a veterinarian technician with Luzerne County SPCA, said. "If they're avoiding eye contact, if they are avoiding you altogether, these are all things that show you the dog is trying to get out of that situation."

Officials at the SPCA also said that while accidents such as the recent one can happen, there are ways to be proactive.

"Typically when you have a dog that you don't know off the top of your head, like it's not the dog that you're with all the time, we always suggest keeping them on harnesses and leashes at your house, just so in case things like this happen, you can pull them back and redirect them on something else," Lindsay Varneke, Luzerne County SPCA operations manager, said.

The dead dog was preserved for testing for rabies and other illnesses at the West Hazleton Veterinary Hospital. The Luzerne County district attorney's office and Hazleton police were investigating the incident.