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Young Brain Cancer Patient In N.J. Loses Service Dog

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Molly Kimball And Ava (credit: CBS 2)

Molly Kimball And Ava (credit: CBS 2)

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RIVER VALE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Two families came to terms on a heartbreaking decision involving two little girls and a service dog.

Nine-year-old Molly Kimball of River Vale is battling brain cancer.  In March, her German Shepherd Ava bit the 6-year-old girl next door.

WCBS 880’s Levon Putney: Molly Will Get A New Service Dog

Isabelle Gernhardt needed 100 stitches to close the gash on her face.

Molly’s parents said it was an accidental collision between the leashed dog and the child.

“It wasn’t the dog snarling and me jumping and dragging it away. That didn’t happen. It was very quick,” said Paul Kimball, Molly’s father.

The injured girl’s parents disagree.

“It was a dog attacking a child point blank,” said Liz Gernhardt, the victim’s mother.

She said the dog ripped skin off her daughter’s nose.

“And to be there and have them tie her down so they could perform the surgery and to hear her scream, I never want to hear anyone scream like that. And this could have been prevented,” she said.

Gernhardt said Ava nipped her son last year. She’s worried that the incidents will be repeated.

“I just want my children to feel safe and be safe while outside. That’s the bottom line,” she said.

A judge was supposed to decide the fate of the dog Tuesday, but the parents of both girls agreed to have the dog moved to Edgewater. The decision spared Ava’s life, but cost Molly her beloved companion.

“She was always with me, by my side,” she said.

“When Ava goes and wakes Molly up, she rolls out of bed with a smile on her face and comes down and takes her medication,” Paul Kimball said.

“We didn’t want the dog put down. We wanted it to go somewhere it could be of use. We just didn’t want it back in the neighborhood,” said Mike Gernhardt, Isabelle’s father.

Molly will likely get another service dog, but one that is safe and can provide companionship.

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