LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A deaf and mute Cloverport, Ky., woman lies in fair condition at a Louisville hospital, recovering from an attack by a pit bull dog on Saturday, police said.

The dog severely mauled the right arm of Shirley Sturgeon, 59, as she walked to the home of friends in Cloverport, in Breckenridge County, said Cloverport police chief Jeff Hendrick.

Medics flew Sturgeon to University of Louisville for treatment. Sturgeon likely will need several more surgeries to save her arm, Hendrick said.

It was not clear what might have prompted the dog to attack the woman. A neighbor heard a scream and saw the dog dragging the woman along Cherry Lane. Other neighbors then hit the dog with a baseball bat and a machete to force it to let go of the woman, Hendrick said.

Police cited the dog's owner, Jerry Sanders, 46, of Beaver Dam, Ky. He was charged with harboring a vicious animal and allowing a vicious animal to run at large. Sanders was scheduled to appear in Breckinridge District Court at Hardinsburg on Tuesday.

The dog, described as a 2-year-old pit bull, is caged at the Breckinridge County animal services shelter as an investigation continues.

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