Dog pack mauls child

2011-12-10 00:00

A PACK of four dogs attacked a six-year-old girl after she had bought a packet of chips at a tuckshop in Mkondeni, Pietermaritzburg.

Bloody pants with bits of flesh clinging to the ripped fabric are are a reminder of how close Olwethu Mbotho came to death.

The young girl, who is recovering at home in Mkondeni, was on her way home from a nearby tuckshop when she was attacked by the tuckshop owner’s dogs.

Her mother, Nomvelo Mbotho, tearfully related how the incident happened. “My neighbour came knocking on my door at 1 pm screaming that my daughter was mauled by dogs at the tuckshop. When I got there she was crying uncontrollably because of the pain. There was a gaping wound on her left thigh and at the back of her head.

“We asked the shop owner to take her to hospital but he refused and told us that he did not send the dogs to attack her.

“We then decided to call a meter taxi at our own expense to take the child to hospital,” said Mbotho.

Hearing her mother retell the story brought Olwethu to tears and she repeatedly complained of the pain.

Eyewitness Zimele Sikhakhane claimed that community members have complained several times to the dog owner, Ray Lulakhraj, about the dogs not being on a leash.

“When we saw the dogs dragging the little girl into the bush with their teeth ripping into her head we thought she was dead.

“We tried chase the dogs away, but they would not let go. We had to throw bottles at them. These dogs are dangerous and always steal our chickens,” said Sikhakhane.

When Weekend Witness went to the area yesterday the dogs were still roaming around unleashed with residents cautiously entering the shop. Lulakhraj said he has owned the dogs for years and they have never been violent.

“The dogs must have been provoked because if they went around attacking people I would be out of business by now,” he said.

For the SPCA to confiscate the dogs, it would need permission from the municipality, said spokesperson Maureen Vida. Municipality spokesperson Brian Zuma was not available for comment at the time of going to print.

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