Emergency op for child bitten by dog

2012-01-12 10:52

Cape Town - A 2-year-old child has had plastic surgery to her back and leg after she was bitten by a dog on Clifton beach on Wednesday afternoon.

Meeka Riley Lackay from Bridgetown, Athlone, was with her aunt on Clifton’s main beach when she was attacked by a Rottweiler. Her right leg and back were injured and she had an emergency operation at Cape Town MediClinic at 18:00.

Meeka was attacked from behind and fell on a rock.

“We went to the beach with some friends at about 10:00,” Meeka's aunt Liska October said at the hospital on Wednesday afternoon.

She and her boyfriend were with Meeka on the beach when they saw four dogs.

Dog grabbed her leg

“There were a few dogs on the beach but they were on leashes. I was not far from her. There was a small rock between us but I could see her.

“When I turned around to look at her, I saw how a dog suddenly jumped on her.

“There were more dogs in the area and I tried to stop them from attacking her as well. The dog grabbed her leg,” said an emotional October.

The owner of the dog came and pulled the dog away. “I don’t know what he did but the dog let go of her.”

The parents are planning to lay a charge against the dog's owner.

Wilfred Solomons-Johannes, acting head of the City of Cape Town's disaster risk management centre, said Clifton was a blue flag beach and dogs were not allowed on it.

The city council’s law enforcement and specialised services unit would investigate the incident.

- Were you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts.

  • geejaybee - 2012-01-12 11:08

    The little girl is out surgery and doing well.

      CapeChappy - 2012-01-12 11:52

      Great to hear. I can't imagine how terrified she must have been at only 2 years old. These inconsiderate dog owner p*ss me off so much. I have had so many run ins with owners of aggressive dogs. If your dog can't behave, keep it at home. I don't blame the dog, I blame the idiotic owner who didn't train the dog properly or control it on the beach. If you choose to buy a dog that is bred to be aggressive, then you must be prepared to have them trained or keep them out of the public. I hope she does sue the owner.

      nicolene.scheepers3 - 2012-01-12 12:00

      If I said it once, I've said it a million times, keep your dog on a leash! Not to mention the ignorant owners that keeps their front gates at home open for their dogs to trot in the streets as they wish attacking pedestrians or cyclists.

      bella.masterton - 2012-01-12 12:03

      .. and that should be relif for her parents and her? Parents are traumatized and will live with d guilt 4ever. The girl will never be d same, physically and psychologicaly. As long as theres no penalty 4 owners - things wont change! Killing d dog? They will buy a new 1. But if they pay compensation or spend some quality time behind the bars - thinking What If - they would never do it again. But again ... its the legal system that allows this behaviour.

      Lanfear - 2012-01-12 13:44

      Agreed Nicolene! I frequently have that problem when walking my [leashed] dog. I carry pepper spray now mostly because of this and will spray any attacking dog and its owner for good measure!

      unevenaxe - 2012-01-12 17:07

      Rottweilers are not aggressive but it is the way people treat them! Dogs need to be socialized from when they are puppies. People are just ignorant when it comes to dogs! I have big dogs that are very friendly to all people and other dogs. People need to do there home work before getting a dog. I had a rottweiler and it was the most chilled out dog ever! Again it comes down to how you raise your dog!

  • Gareth - 2012-01-12 11:11

    Stupid F&^%$$& dog owner.

      Karen - 2012-01-12 12:17

      @northsgn: your comment is a reflection of your profile activities and interests which is 'and sitting on my ass' and 'drinking the pub'. If people were judged by their command of the English language, you'd be shot.

      Lanfear - 2012-01-12 13:10

      @ northsgn - its not the dog that's rubbish, its the owner.

  • Lionel - 2012-01-12 11:11

    What kind of moron takes a dog to a very public beach? I have dogs, and always take them for a run on isolated spots, and if there are people or other dogs around, they get leashed. Naturally I take a plastic bag for the poop!

      zanfre - 2012-01-12 11:30

      Yay! A responsible dog owner!! Wish there were more of us....

      Bryan - 2012-01-12 11:59

      Big up to you Lionel.., some dog owners have no respect for the safety and well-being of others! Not the dogs fault?? I disagree.., We often hear of attacks by Rottweillers, bull terriers etc which are, generally speaking, very aggresive animals. Sorry, but I agree that the dog should be put down and the owner should feel the long arm of the law to the full extent.. Hope the little girl recovers fully!!

      nathan.blows - 2012-01-12 12:01

      I feel the same way. We have two dogs, one medium- and one large-breed (a 32 kg boxer and a 50 kg boerboel/mastiff cross, who we walk regularly. They also get taken to beaches (those that do allow dogs). In rare cases, where no-one is around for miles, they go off-leash - but for a short while only, and always under our supervision. We also carry plastic bags with us, so if they do need to do a number 2, we can pick up after them. This gets discarded in the nearest suitable bin when we have the chance. I can't stand people who let their dogs mess where they will and don't clean up afterwards - I'm sure there are laws against that type of thing. They are definitely not allowed near any child (we have 5 godchildren and a few friends with kids, too) unless we are in the immediate vicinity. Owning dogs is a responsibility - particularly when it comes to the larger breeds. If people can't be responsible they shouldn't get dogs.

      judith.piek - 2012-01-12 12:14

      I’m also the lucky owner of 2 gorgeous dogs and I only take them to dog friendly areas with poopscoop and bag in hand. It makes me furious when I spot people with their dogs on public beaches where dogs are prohibited; it takes only 1 idiot to sour the public to all dog owners and to revoke our already limited privileges. I wish this poor girl a speedy recovery…

      TJ - 2012-01-12 13:28

      I live in a small town and have 3 dogs. One is a boerboel/labrador who is only 5 months old but already very big and strong. The other two are the size of rats or maybe just slightly smaller. We like to take them for walks on the quieter country roads and always on leashes. However, up the road from us is an idiot who has 2 big dogs and leaves his gates open. Those dogs love to come running out to chase our dogs so my son always has to carry a big stick or something with him. Further on is another big boerboel who is always wondering the streets and will swallow the two little ones whole in one mouthfull. I don't even want to think of what our pup would try do to defend his 'family'. He will end up being mauled as well. Please guys, think of others in public places too. Stop being selfish. keep your dogs in your yards or on leashes so that they are not a threat to anyone else.

      Michelle - 2012-01-12 13:45

      I wish the owners of dogs on Cape St Francis beaches would take plastic bags with them. You can't put your foot down without stepping in dog poop!!

      unevenaxe - 2012-01-12 17:09

      Ja it's the worst thing when people don't clean up after their pets. I also always take poop bags with!

  • Gaby - 2012-01-12 11:16

    No doubt the dog owner was not planning on picking up the poo either. What is it about us South Africans that we think we can get away with it?

  • Ambi - 2012-01-12 11:18

    These pathetic animal owners who treat their pets like humans irritate the sh*t out of me...I hope they sue those people for milliona

      TheWatcher - 2012-01-12 11:46

      For many people pets are a member of the family (mine are). Where a lot of people go wrong is they don't train and socialize their pets properly. In addition unfortunately sometimes you just get a bad egg, some dogs are just too aggressive to keep.

      Wall - 2012-01-12 13:20

      My pets are my children... but I have respect for the fact that other people don't feel the same way about them.

      Heiku - 2012-01-12 13:31

      100% in agreement with you Ambi. Certain breeds of dogs are bred to be aggressive. You can't have some fake little emotional attachment to the thing and then think it wont ever attack.

  • reinhard.pettenburger - 2012-01-12 11:27

    Regardless of the fact the dog was not on a leash poorly trained and the owners should be sued as well as having the dog put down! This is yet another typical example of useless pet owners causing the suffering of others and their dog (Shame on the owners you are a disgrace to animal lovers, If you intend owning a dog, look after it, train it etc.).

      Moi - 2012-01-12 11:35

      Why should the poor dog have to suffer for the actions of an incompetent owner? You don't know how old the dog is: could possibly be given to caring owners that will train and look after him properly.

      Shadipity - 2012-01-12 11:57

      Moi1980 - when it comes to cases like this you can not say for sure that the dog will never attack an innocent person again. What people tend to forget that once upon a time dogs were wild and just because they are now domesticated does not mean they do not still have their wild insticnted

      Jods - 2012-01-12 12:12

      I agree with Moi1980 - why punish the dog? Its not his fault, aggressive dogs are 100% the owners fault.

      Lanfear - 2012-01-12 13:19

      Why should the dog be put down? If it is too aggressive to train, give it to the police or correctional services to use as guard.

      Moi - 2012-01-12 13:31

      @Shadipity - I get that. But before going with the knee-jerk reaction of having the dog put down, they should first see if there is a possibilty of having the dog "rehabilitated", if that's the correct term.

      reinhard.pettenburger - 2012-01-12 14:11

      Moi1980 I am all for trying to save the dog and agree its not the dogs fault but Rottweilers are extremely powerful dogs and left in the wrong hands become vicious and unpredictable. If you can save the dog fine but as the law is at the moment they will be forced to have the dog put down (this is what I was trying to get accross the dog must die because the owners have not done their job)

      Moi - 2012-01-12 14:14

      Thanks Reinhard, I wasn't aware that there was such a law in place. If that's the case, I don't think it's enough that the owners just get sued: they should not be allowed any pets.

  • jacques.buckle - 2012-01-12 11:29

    big dogs are useless

      TheWatcher - 2012-01-12 11:43

      Actually they are a great deterrent to burglars and muggers. That alone is reason enough to have one given the current crime levels in SA

      Ryan - 2012-01-12 13:12

      So Jacques, you're implying that a small dog is useful then?

      Ken - 2012-01-12 15:24

      jacques I would not say they are useless as it depends on what the dog has to do. I've owned both over a period of 40 years. As far as security in the city is concerned I would rather have a small dog as they seem to have better hearing and quickly pick up on any strange sounds. When I've cared for both a big dog and a small dog, both around the same age and both were sleeping, the small dogs were always much quicker at alerting us whilst the big dog slept on. Small dogs cost less (food, vets etc) and tend to outlive their bigger friends by a multiple of twice. I regularly take my small dog to friends (some who own cats) when visiting as they are no hassle.

      jacques.buckle - 2012-01-12 17:13

      they poison the big ones cause they sleep outside

  • TheWatcher - 2012-01-12 11:32

    Ok so no indication the dog was provoked, it needs to be put down and the owner cover the medical bills of the child.

      Sonja - 2012-01-12 11:41

      Instead of always blaming the dog for acting on instinct (which is natural..)... Why can't we put the people down? It aint the dogs fault...

      Shadipity - 2012-01-12 12:02

      Sonja - If attacking a person which is smaller than it(dog) without provication is natural (and its instinct) then it would be best for mankind to put down all the dogs in the work or everyone is at risk of being attacked multiple times per day!

      karen.glautier - 2012-01-12 12:06

      I love animals, but have to agree with you on this one. It appears the animal wan't provoked (and for those of you who will ask how I can say this - a 2 year old is not yet able to comprehend the task of teasing an animal) therefore perhaps the dogs instinct kicked in.... he saw a weaker and smaller animal and decided to 'hunt' it. There is no way he was threatened by her, she is probably a tiny little thing.

      Lanfear - 2012-01-12 13:20

      Agree Sonja. So the dog should be put down and the owner pays a little financial pay-off? Unfair, it was the owner's fault, not the dog's.

      TheWatcher - 2012-01-12 16:07

      @sonja regardless of whether it is the dogs fault or the owners the fact of the matter is that this animal attacked a small child for no apparent reason and if it's done it once it is more than likely going to do so again. I love dogs but unless there is some extenuating circumstance not present in the article (e.g dog was trying to help and the surgery was for the fall not the bite and the whole thing was a misunderstanding - however unlikely) then this dog is a danger to others and needs to be put down in case this ends up not being a one off incident.

  • Lee-Ann - 2012-01-12 11:36

    What an idiot...ruining any chance of responsible dog owners ever being able to take their dogs out in public

  • Klipkop - 2012-01-12 11:43

    While driving back to CPT on the N1 some weeks back I stopped in Towsriver at the Shell garage. Took my 2 Weimies out to stretch their legs and drink some water (they dont pee or poo while we are traveling). Just walked a few meters with them on their leashes. Some small kid came running to me to come and pet (or pull) my dogs ears.. I told her and her parents to f-off and not to touch my dogs. Maybe this kid did the same.. injure/harm my dog and I will tell my dog to bite you and I will kick you afterwards. This is only in the media because it was a Rottie! But dogs should always be on a leash in a public area. Always!

      Shadipity - 2012-01-12 12:05

      And when your dog kills said child we will all visit you in jial. What people tend to forget is that animals in SA are not sanctioned beings but property, therefore you are responcible for your properties actions. On a side note: as an animal lover and pet owner don't you think that taking the minute or two to explain to the child how to pet your dog might have done a long way to teaching the kid respect for animals. Shame on you for being so selfish with your knowledge!

      Daniël - 2012-01-12 12:47


      Lanfear - 2012-01-12 13:23

      I agree that dogs should be leashed when out in public. It seriously makes me furious when people leave their gates open and their dogs run out to attack my leashed dog as I walk her. Or when people just leave dogs such as Rotties off the leash trusting that the dog will listen when instict takes over and it attacks. Kids are often not taught to behave properly around dogs which result in biting because that is the dog's instinct and nature.

      Sharon - 2012-01-12 13:34

      @ klipkop ur name says it all brains only klippe .....stupid fool

  • Justine - 2012-01-12 11:46

    Here in France we have a law that any Category 1/2/3 dogs (Rotweiller being a category 2 dog, needs to be on leashes and needs to have a mouthguard whenever they go out in public places. With reason. The owner is responsable for the dog's acts. Point.

      TamaraSays - 2012-01-12 22:03

      So true - a muzzle would make all the difference here. I worked with dogs for nine years, during high school etc, and even I am scared of some of the dogs I see out there!

  • lmnci - 2012-01-12 11:46

    why did this all of a sudden be about 'colour',a little girl was bitten by a dog and had to have plastic surgery. lets not deviate from the issue @ hand plz.

  • Jodie - 2012-01-12 11:56

    FYI she is coloured as I know her parents, it shudnt be a racist issue let just pray she can overcome this traumatic ordeal

      karen.glautier - 2012-01-12 12:10

      Best wishes to the family and prayers for her recovery.

      Shadipity - 2012-01-12 12:22

      Pls give her a big hug from me. Such a little thing should never have to go through such pain! Sending all my positive thoughts for a speedy recovery!

      Sharon - 2012-01-12 13:38

      Everything of the best for the lil one, please send regards to the family xxxx

  • Gilad - 2012-01-12 12:09

    You not allowed dogs there until 6 pm as far as I know.

  • mishymoo - 2012-01-12 12:26

    I was bitten on the leg by a jack russel last year. Nothing compared to what this little girl experienced but I have to say my experience was terrifying and the pain excruciating!

  • Tracey-Lee - 2012-01-12 12:27

    Rottweilers/any vicious dogs should be kept on leashes in public places Idiots !!!!!!!!!

      Daniël - 2012-01-12 12:43


      Lanfear - 2012-01-12 13:37

      Yes Daniël they are. But they should still be kept on a leash when out in public. In fact, ALL dogs should be kept on leashes when in public areas, being walked, etc. Even small dogs are annoying when they try to attack my dog when we are walking. I carry pepper spray with me these days, not only for some criminal trying to attack me but also for dogs attacking.

      Deon - 2012-01-12 13:41

      This owner is in big trouble as no dogs are allowed there (even on leashes).

      morneoosthuizen - 2012-01-12 14:00

      Not just rotties, or vicious dogs. ALL dogs. I have a rottie, that has never bitten anyone in the 7 years I own him, because I keep him on a leash. I'm the owner. Its my responsibility. This is NOT the dogs fault. In fact, when I go to the beach, and walk past other bigger dogs, we let them socialize. Its the little mutts, that are not on a leash, that show small man syndrome and start fighting. don't make this about rotties, or viscous dogs.

  • trev2 - 2012-01-12 12:40

    I am so glad that it was not her face that was bitten!

  • Daniël - 2012-01-12 12:42


  • Thumeka Ayandatum Tiwani - 2012-01-12 13:17

    What were dogs doing at Clifton in the first place? D owner shud pay for all d surgery and medication needed thereafter for Meeka.

  • Bonham - 2012-01-12 13:23

    Don't blame the dog. I am rottweiler and I am very placid, a direct result of the love i get at home. When I run free on the beach I would never attack anybody. Aggressive dogs are a direct result of poor upbringing, much like unruly children. And I see many of them on the beach.

      Heiku - 2012-01-12 13:38

      Absolute bull. You dont just 'love' away years and years of breeding.

      Brian - 2012-01-12 13:39

      Please you harbor a vicious nature. its a part of your nature

      Bonham - 2012-01-12 14:04

      Nonsense. We have chilren around our house often and I never do anything to them. Even when they ride me like a horse. In fact they are a lot worse behaved than me.

      Gcwabe-KaMavovo - 2012-01-12 14:06

      Give that man a bone.

      Brian - 2012-01-12 14:45

      sure Bonham till that fateful day you get a bee in your bonnet

  • Nabeel - 2012-01-12 13:26

    My daughter turns 2 tomorrow and if that were her i would make every effort to put the owner and dog in a bag filled with bricks and drop them in the ocean.

  • Brian - 2012-01-12 13:37

    Rottweilers are wild animals, wish people would stop owning dogs like this.

      Saffa - 2012-01-12 15:48 seems my comment is a little 'confusing'. Let me put it this way @Brian: Humans are wild animals, wish people would stop breeding hideous offspring that murder, rape and maim.

      Christopher - 2012-01-12 16:12

      "Rottweilers are wild animals, wish people would stop owning dogs like this." you are a "re - wait for it - tard".

  • thabelorale - 2012-01-12 13:40

    Dogs do not bite children, kill that monster.

  • thabelorale - 2012-01-12 13:49

    Animals have common sense. When I grew up, there was a dog which most elders feared because it inflicted so many injuries to many of them but to me and my age mates it was so friendly. Even if I tormented it, it will just roar to show me that it is not happy or go away from me but not to bite me, that was so wonderful. This one is a monster, period!

      Christopher - 2012-01-12 16:15!!!??? a dog with common sense that roars....really?

      budmoto - 2012-03-06 11:59

      Sorry... did you say, "Even if I tormented it,..." wow - it's idiots like YOU that should be mauled, not the 2yr old's who inevitably end up paying for your stupidity!!

  • Jo.Davies123 - 2012-01-12 14:13

    Another case where people want the dog to be put down, because of the owners lack of knowledge of the animal they own. We have a rehabilitated rotti and they are awesome dogs, full of love when loved back and very obediant. But I would never dream off taking him out without a leash (and yes, a bag for no. 2's!) Unfortunalty, there are very few programs available for rehabilitation of animals and very few people take these dogs into consideration when looking for a dog.

  • Daniel - 2012-01-12 14:15

    Shame poor little one, luckily doesnt sound deadly, but still, scars etc, wish her and her family all the best. Btw this dog can be happy the dog from this old News24 wasnt on holiday down here in the Cape and on Clifton yesterday, read this:

  • angelanell7 - 2012-01-12 14:21

    Another reason to not own a Rottweiler! I love dogs but rottweilers are unpredictable!

      Saffa - 2012-01-12 14:35

      And you are seriously misinformed.....I have been 'owned' by noble, loyal, well behaved and well socialised Rotties for over 18 years. In all those years - not ONE incident of aggression from ANY of my beautiful dogs (deceased and living). The sad thing is, over a period of 18 years I have been bitten, kicked, slapped, spat on and assaulted by OTHER people's HUMAN children..... So dear misinformed one let me say, I love humans, but children are unpredictable.......

      morneoosthuizen - 2012-01-12 15:39

      You need to spend a day with a well trained Rottie. Its not the dog, is the owner. In fact, no dog can be blamed for its behavior. Its the way its raised that matters. I bet you if any other dog attacked the child, we would not be having this conversation.

  • Virginia - 2012-01-12 14:31

    Yes once again the irrisponsible owners allowing their dogs to run around in an area which is not a dog free running area are spoiling it for all. I do not blame the dog, however, I believe the owner should be jailed. Stupid people!!! The parents of this child should sue the owner

  • Preshen - 2012-01-12 14:38

    who let the dogs out?

  • Caroline - 2012-01-12 14:41

    Poor child, many dog owners seem to think their dogs and them are entitled to be there. Everytime I go to a Cape Town beach I see dogs dumping in the sand- its SO gross. And while I'm here, people should also take their stompies with them- what if we allowed our kids to defecate on the beach, hit other people's dogs, kids, etc over the head with their buckets and leave their chewing gum as an unwelcome suprise in the sand? Also...Sonja, you need counselling, doll.

      Saffa - 2012-01-12 14:50

      What beaches do you go to 'doll'? I see children behaving in the way you describe regularly......Please let me know where this 'well behaved child' beach is......I doubt it exists. Children act in the most HIDEOUS ways on beaches and the parents seem to think it's CUTE - well guess what Caroline, I DON'T. Most of the time I feel it's the children who should be leashed in public, not the dogs.

  • Mona - 2012-01-12 14:59

    I hope they charge the owner that is so reckless to let a rottweiler loose in public!

  • Tony - 2012-01-12 15:01

    How selfish - taking your dog on a blueflag beach, which is not allowed in the first place, and then not being able to control it...I hope that you pay for that child your dog injured for the rest of your life!

  • Catharina - 2012-01-12 15:04

    Name and shame that dog owner, and ban him from Clifton for good!

      micellv - 2012-01-13 10:03

      Catharina, the owner is a self-proclaimed South African "Dog Whisperer". We were following the story on 5fm this also happens to be the second incident of attack by one of his pets.

  • frans.grobler3 - 2012-01-12 15:08


  • Catharina - 2012-01-12 15:09

    and put down the dog, because he has shown his nature - he might attack a child again.

  • carolyn.dewrance - 2012-01-12 16:53

    A child of 2 years old should not be out of reach of her parents or guardians, she should be in a harness made to keep her safe, so there are two sides to this story, not only is the owner of the dog to blame but so are the parents. Children should never be allowed to approach a strange dog or any animal for that matter, Dogs will bite, it is part of their protective nature, and a 2 year old does not know that, its up to the parents to control the child. Sorry she got bitten, but you cant throw all the blame on the dog, The back injury was most likely caused when the child fell on the rock.

      Deon - 2012-01-12 20:18

      Oh please, so now the child should've been harnassed?? What's the point of taking a child to the beach if it has to be leashed like an animal? ALL the blame here should go to the dog owner, none to the child's parents or the dog. The dog didn't walk itself onto a beach where dogs aren't allowed. And read the story properly. The child was attacked from behind, meaning that she probably hadn't approached the dog or provoked it in any way. So how can the parents or guardian share any blame?

  • unevenaxe - 2012-01-12 17:06

    Rottweilers are not aggressive but it is the way people treat them! Dogs need to be socialized from when they are puppies. People are just ignorant when it comes to dogs! I have big dogs that are very friendly to all people and other dogs. People need to do there home work before getting a dog. I had a rottweiler and it was the most chilled out dog ever! Again it comes down to how you raise your dog!

  • Linda - 2012-01-12 18:18

    Dog owners think they are above the law. On several occasion I have had words with people walking their dogs on Strand Main beach where the sign clearly states 'no dogs allowed' A couple of times the dog owners have sworn at me. I also have a neighbour who has 5 dogs on her premises that bark day and night. Dog owners are very quick to complain about fireworks disturbing their dogs and draw up petitions to have these stopped. As far as I am concerned walking dogs on public beaches should be banned for the health and safety of the public.

  • micellv - 2012-01-13 10:04

    The owner is a self-proclaimed South African "Dog Whisperer". We were following the story on 5fm this also happens to be the second incident of attack by one of his pets.

  • Janine - 2012-01-13 19:55

    Such a sad story. I pray that the girl will be ok. It is incidents like these that make it impossible to take dogs to beaches. We take our dogs for training and they are fully socialized to other dogs and people. We spent a lot of time and money to have well behaved dogs that we can take to the beach and other public places. We always have poo bags handy and they are happy to be on leash. Because of these irresponsible idiots there are so few beaches that allow dogs. What is more fun than running your dogs on an open beach. Now the responsible owners and their well behaved dogs have to pay the price.

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