Fox attacks twin baby girls in UK

2010-06-07 14:34

London - Twin baby sisters were in hospital on Monday in a serious but stable condition after they were injured by a fox while they slept at their home in east London, police said.

Foxes have become common in urban areas but animal experts said it was extremely rare for them to attack humans.

The attack on the 9-month-old girls happened in Hackney on Saturday night while their parents were watching television, newspapers reported.

The fox is believed to have entered the house through patio doors which had been left open because of hot weather.

The parents of the twins called emergency services after chasing the fox out, papers said.

The girls were both reported to have suffered arm wounds and one a facial injury.

A fox was later caught in a trap set in the family's garden by pest controllers, police said. The animal was put down in the early hours of Monday morning after a vet said it was not safe to move it.

"Foxes are shy creatures and this sounds like an extremely rare occurrence," animal welfare group the RSPCA said.

Animal welfare consultant John Bryant told BBC radio he had never come across a fox attack in his business of dealing with them as urban pests.

"It's a freakish event" he said. "I've only heard of two cases in my 40 years of dealing with foxes - one of which turned out to be a German Shepherd (dog) and the other a cat."