Pictured: American bulldog that launched savage attack on four-year-old girl who needed 40 stitches in her face
- Little Luna-Ann Forsyth, four, was attacked by the dog at a friend’s home nearby
- She was rushed to hospital and needed to have 40 stitches on her face wounds
A picture of the American Bulldog who mauled a four-year-old girl, requiring her to have 40 stitches in her face, has been released.
Tiny Luna-Ann Forsyth was pinned to the ground by the large white dog, which had to be punched by mother Amy Hobson, 32, to get it to relinquish its grip.
The nightmare unfolded at a friend’s home Nuneaton, Warwickshire, on Thursday afternoon.
Ms Hobson had to take Luna to hospital by taxi after call handlers said an ambulance would take several hours.
When they arrived, Luna was rushed for treatment and suffered the ordeal of 40 stitches in her face from the wounds.
Police say an investigation has been launched and the dog has been seized and destroyed.
Pictured: The American Bulldog who mauled a four-year-old girl, requiring her to have 40 stitches in her face
Luna-Ann Forsyth, four, was attacked by the dog at a friend’s home nearby last week
Surgeons toiled for two hours on her and have warned her mother she will have permanent scarring.
Read more: Police hunt dogwalker after mastiff cross attacks dog in Asda car park in town where two have been killed by XL Bully breeds
Ms Hobson said the dog had been in a room upstairs but managed to open the door and came down.
She told the Mirror: ‘The dog came up to me so I gave him a fuss like I always have done, my daughter Luna shouted the dog’s name so she could fuss him just like she always has done.
‘He got hold of her face and got her to the ground.
‘I was kicking and punching the dog to get him off her and I got my little girl off the floor, and called 999 straight away.
‘They said they couldn’t get an ambulance out to me, it was going to be a few hours for them to get to me, so I got a taxi to A&E.
‘There was loads of blood. Luna was calm and brave, it was me that was panicking and crying.’
Ms Hobson had to take Luna for the hospital by taxi after call handlers said an ambulance would take several hours
How to spot aggression in a dog – and its cause
Aggression in dogs is almost always a case of fear – using their bite as a last resort method of self-defence or to get a frightening or unpleasant experience to stop.
Such fears can arise due to early years puppy socialisation or past experiences.
Owners need to be able to recognise and establish how a dog is feeling, with many giving off warning signals before an attack.
There are several signals that your dog may give to indicate they are worried, fearful or feeling stressed and these include: yawning or licking lips, crouching with their tail between their legs, wagging tails and growling.
If a dog is showing any signs of aggression, a vet should be consulted to determine if there is a medical cause, such as pain or discomfort.
Failing that, speaking to a behavioural expert could help tame a more aggressive animal.
Source: Merseyside Dog Safety Partnership
Dr John Tulloch, a veterinary public health expert at the University of Liverpool authored a 2021 research paper that revealed a startling rise in the number of dog bite incidents over the past 20 years.
He told MailOnline that although wider research into the cause of this explosion in these attacks was limited, there had been an emergence of ‘worrying’ trends that he has witnessed in more recent dog ownership.
Possible explanations include broader changes in society, with more dogs now being bought from unregulated or overseas breeders, or the way in which people interact with their pets – fuelled by TikTok trends or videos hoping to garner likes online.
Dr Tulloch told MailOnline: ‘In the last 20 years or so there’s been a definite rise in cases of severe dog attacks, it has been creeping up and up and up and we should be calling it what it is: a growing public health problem.
‘In most cases, it’s a dog that is known to the victim as these events are occurring behind closed doors.
‘Children still account for around 25 per cent of hospital admissions due to dog bites, but we need to understand why adults are being attacked more now. It’s a striking problem.’
The issue of violent dogs has caused problems in the town of Caerphilly, south Wales.
In the past year and a half, great-great grandmother Shirley Patrick, 83, and schoolboy Jack Lis, 10, were killed by XL Bully breeds and at least 13 dangerous dogs have been seized.
Mrs Patrick died in hospital 17 days after suffering ‘life-threatening injuries’ to her head, body, face and arms by a black XL Bully cross Cane Corso breed.
Jack had been playing with a friend after school when they went to the house where Beast was roaming around downstairs and then bit his face, head and neck.
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