Sophie Bateman (Newshub)
Auckland, January 8, 2018
A seven-year-old boy has been left with stitches in his face and mouth after he was attacked by an unregistered dog.
Hunter Baldwin and his family had just arrived at Stillwater Beach on Sunday (January 7) afternoon, when he saw a Rottweiler and asked to pat her.
Mum Angela Rowley told Newshub that she told him not to touch the dog, but her owner said she “loved children” and they could give her a pat.
“I turned my back for five seconds, then I heard a growl and my son scream.”
Hunter received deep wounds in his cheek and inside his mouth.
Ms Rowley said that the dog’s owner told her he would have the dog put down, before quickly leaving the beach.
“I was quite annoyed that he did not stick around or say sorry.”
She took her son to Silverdale Medical Centre and he was transferred to Starship, then Middlemore Hospital for surgery.
He received six stitches in his face, and more inside his mouth.
Ms Rowley said that Hunter is a “normal little boy” who loved dogs before yesterday’s incident, and that the attack has left him feeling insecure.
“He told me, ‘I don’t like dogs, they scare me.’
It has dented both his love of dogs and his self-confidence. He says, ‘I don’t want anyone to see me’.”
Ms Rowley said that other parents should be mindful of their children’s safety around dogs.
“I just want people to be aware, whether the dog looks nice or not. Don’t always trust your first instinct.”
Ms Rowley said that she was disappointed with a lack of action by the Police when she reported the attack, but the incident is currently being investigated by the Far North District Council.
The Council told ‘Newshub’ that the owner of the dog has been fined $300 for owning an unregistered dog.
Hunter Baldwin received seven stitches in his face and mouth after the dog attack
(Picture by Angela Rowley)
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