Dog attack victim now wary of going outside her home

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SCARRED: The puncture wounds and bruising suffered by a woman who was attacked by a dog on Monday afternoon.
SCARRED: The puncture wounds and bruising suffered by a woman who was attacked by a dog on Monday afternoon.

A 50-year-old Kaitaia woman who was attacked by a large tan dog on Monday afternoon is now wary of leaving her home.

The woman, who did not wish to be identified, said she was walking on the track between Masters Street and Bonnetts Road, 100 metres from her home at around 3pm when she heard a "scuffling" noise behind her. As she turned to see what it was the dog launched itself at her, taking hold of her upper left arm, inflicting puncture wounds and extensive bruising.

She managed to shake it off but it bit her again, in the right hip, before she was able to kick it in the chest, at which point it ran off.

She believed she had only managed to keep her feet because she was turning as the dog attacked, spinning her around rather than knocking her to the ground. She had no doubt that the dog was a Rhodesian ridgeback, which she said she had not seen before.

Two police officers knocked on doors the length of the street shortly after the attack, but no one they spoke to was able to identify the dog or say where it lived.

Meanwhile the victim said the police, a St John ambulance and Far North District Council animal control officers arrived at her home very quickly after the attack. She had suffered a "bit of an epileptic turn" before the ambulance arrived, and a more significant one while it was there, but had been treated at home rather than going to hospital, at her request.

"I think I was in shock. I didn't want to move," she said.

"I'm OK now (on Tuesday), but I'm wary of going anywhere."

A Far North District Council spokesman said the attack had been reported to animal control by the police, Senior Sergeant Geoff Ryan saying on Tuesday that efforts to find the dog were continuing.

Neither the police nor the council knew of an alleged attack by a dog on two other dogs that were being walked by their owner in the same area a day or two before. The council spokesman said not all incidents were reported.

- Northland Age

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