S.C. Mom Brutally Mauled by 3 Dogs Faces New Health Challenges, Is 'No Longer Breathing on Her Own'

Kyleen Waltman, 38, continues fighting for her life after undergoing aggressive surgeries and multiple amputations stemming from a vicious March 21 dog attack

kyleen waltman
Kyleen Waltman. Photo: GoFundMe

Several days after a South Carolina mother was brutally mauled by a stranger's dogs, she still faces a long road to recovery.

Kyleen Waltman, 38, was walking toward her home in Honea Path on the morning of March 21 when three dogs attacked her. A passerby soon found her in a ditch beneath the dogs and was able to get them off her and call for help.

The past 10 days have put Waltman's family through a roller coaster of emotion, filled with equally prevalent moments of hope and fear. Shortly after Waltman was airlifted to a hospital, doctors were forced to amputate both of her arms up to the shoulder and remove part of her colon. Her esophagus and spine also suffered injury, and her left leg is at risk of amputation if it doesn't begin to improve, according to family members.

Waltman's sister, Amy Wynne, organized a GoFundMe page to help pay the mother of three's bills. As of Thursday afternoon, the campaign has received about 2,700 donations totaling more than $130,000.

"She has a long road ahead of her and will need medical and financial help. Every little bit would help greatly, but please do not feel obligated to donate," Wynn wrote, adding that prayers are what their family needs most.

On Monday, for the first time since her attack, Waltman was removed from life support and woken up, allowing her to talk to her daughters and mother who have stayed by her side, according to Wynne.

After a night without sedation, though, Waltman was put back on life support when her blood pressure and heartbeat suddenly spiked and her oxygen levels dipped. "She's no longer breathing on her own," Wynne noted in an update Tuesday. "They did a scan of her lungs and they're full of fluid."

Wynne wrote that doctors have been giving her different medications for the fluid and trying to determine if she has pneumonia.

The owner of the three dogs that attacked Waltman, two of which were pit bulls, was identified as Justin Minor and taken into custody, WYFF reported. Abbeville County Sheriff's Office said the man faces three counts of penalty for the owner of dangerous animal attacks, one count of rabies control chapter violation, and one count of dangerous animals not permitted beyond premises unless restrained.

A judge set Minor's bond at $15,000 and said he is due back in court in May.

According to WYFF, Abbeville Animal Control took possession of the dogs. The shelter did not immediately return PEOPLE's request for comment on how they were handled.

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