More than a dozen family members and friends gathered to greet a young boy who was released from the hospital Sunday afternoon, following a vicious dog attack in North Idaho.

A pit bull attacked 5-year-old Hallah while he was playing in his aunt’s front yard Friday in Desmet. His father, Vince Peone, said he received a startling call from his daughters at about 6:30 p.m.

“The dog did a lot of damage in a very short amount of time,” he said. “Nobody even heard it.”

Family members said the dog owner was “rough housing” with the animal across the street when it suddenly charged and attacked the boy.  Peone’s niece said she ran outside to find the dog owner lying over the boy’s body.

“She was in shock because his whole body was covered in blood,” Peone explained. “He actually put his body over my son and I believe saved my son’s life.”

Hallah lost part half of his right ear and sustained gruesome head wounds.  He was treated at Kootenai Health and released on Sunday.

“He’s never going to forget,” his father said. “He’s going to suffer psychological reminders every day when he looks in the mirror.”

Peone said he wanted to share his son’s story to remind dog owners what their pets are capable of and to possibly prevent another child from a similar dog attack.

“All the big breed dogs can do this kind of damage and it can kill children,” Peone said.

Peone said he was not angry at the dog owner, but rather grateful that the attack was not worse.

“We don’t understand why it happened, but we’re just very blessed that our child is still with us,” he said.

Family members said the dog that was responsible for the attack was euthanized in the days following.  Members of the Coeur d’Alene Tribal Police said the dog’s owner was not arrested, but could still face charges.