A grandma has been mauled to death by an out-of-control, banned breed of dog while she lay sunbathing in the garden.
The horror savaging – the latest in a wave of fatal dog attacks across the country – happened while the woman in her 70s was lying on a sun lounger at home in Bedworth, Warwickshire, at 3.50pm on Friday.
The victim’s daughter, 49, desperately tried to fight off the animal as it pounced on her mother, a local said.
She was bitten as she tried in vain to save her mother and was later taken to hospital with non life-threatening injuries.
Both she and her husband, 52, were arrested on suspicion of possessing a banned breed of dog and owning a dog dangerously out of control.
The horror savaging – the latest in a wave of fatal dog attacks across the country – happened while the woman in her 70s was lying on a sun lounger at home in Bedworth, Warwickshire, at 3.50pm on Friday
The victim’s daughter, 49, desperately tried to fight off the animal as it pounced on her mother, a local said
As their semi detached home in a quiet cul-de-sac remains sealed off by police today with a number of detectives and forensic experts visiting the property, neighbours have told of their shock.
A householder, who lives opposite, said: ‘They are a lovely family, three generations live in the house, and it is a terrible thing to have happened.’
The man, who declined to be named, told how he spoken briefly to the dog owner after he was freed on police bail.
Speaking to MailOnline, he said: ‘The dog attacked his mum-in-law while she was in the back garden lying on a sun lounger.
‘He is very shocked and shaken and said he had no idea why the dog suddenly turned and described it as an awful tragedy.
‘He was at work at the time so didn’t see the attack but [his wife] tried to get the dog off.
‘Police say it was a banned breed but I’m not sure. I don’t know what it was – quite a size with a big head, a bulldog Mastiff type.
‘When he got it he said it was a rare breed and there were only six in the country.
‘It was kept in the back garden and whenever I saw it being walked which was not very often because he was always busy at work in the building industry it never showed any aggression.
‘No one knows why it attacked and killed the poor woman, it could have gone crazy after being stung by a bee orbit could have had something wrong with its brain. It could be anything.’
The neighbour was alerted to an incident at around 3.50pm yesterday after seeing an ambulance pull up at the house.
He explained: ‘Suddenly all these cops cars were there, at least seven, a dog van, three ambulances and an air ambulance.
‘When we heard the gran had died I was shocked.’
She was bitten as she tried in vain to save her mother and was later taken to hospital with non life-threatening injuries
Another resident said: ‘They are very nice and always very friendly and have lived here for over 20 years, longer than us.
‘We live right opposite and it is a shock for all the neighbours.
‘The gran was a nice old lady and would always give you a wave’
The man, who also refused to be named, said: ‘She appeared fit and healthy and I’d often see her going to the mosque to pray.
‘I heard the air ambulance coming over and then saw all the other emergency services turn up.
‘I have no idea of the breed of dog but it was big one and lived outside.’
The man added: ‘There’s been a lot of fatal dog attacks recently. I’m a dog owner and have an Akita, an American version. He’s big but as soft as a brush.
‘It’s horrible to find out that your neighbour has been killed by the family dog. My heart goes out to them.’
The victim had not yet been named by police.
The dog has been seized and placed in secure kennels.
Both she and builder husband, 52 were arrested on suspicion of possessing a banned breed of dog and owning a dog dangerously out of control
Superintendent Sutherland Lane of Warwickshire Police said: ‘This was a tragic isolated incident, and a full investigation is now underway to establish the circumstances surrounding it.
‘Thankfully dog attacks of this nature are exceedingly rare, but I recognise this will be deeply upsetting for the local community.
‘The public can expect to see a heightened police presence in and around the area while we conduct our enquiries. Please do come and speak to one of our officers if you have any information that could help with our investigation.’
Ten people were killed by dogs in the UK in 2022, with another five deaths already this year.
The Dangerous Dog Act 1991 bans owning, breeding, selling, giving away, or abandoning four dog breeds, as well as banning any dog which is dangerously out of control.
This legislation makes four breeds of dog originally bred for fighting illegal in the UK: American Pitbull terriers, Japanese Tosas, Dogo Argentinos, and Fila Brazileiro.
Crossbreeds of those four are also prohibited, depending on a judgement of their physical characteristics and how well they match a ‘typical’ description.
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