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Norwich woman needed 47 stitches to her arm after dog attack

PUBLISHED: 08:47 01 September 2011

Marion Brown with her arm bandaged where she was bitten by a rottweiler, needing 47 stitches and leaving a 2 inch diameter open wound. Picture: Denise Bradley

Marion Brown with her arm bandaged where she was bitten by a rottweiler, needing 47 stitches and leaving a 2 inch diameter open wound. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant copyright 2011

A Norwich mother of two needed 47 stitches in her arm following an attack by a neighbour’s rottweiler crossbreed.

Marion Brown, 60, has spoken today of becoming the latest victim of a dangerous dog in the city, and called for owners to take more responsibility for their pets.

The dog that attacked her has since been put down, but police said they could not prosecute its owner because the incident happened on private land.

Mrs Brown has, however, pledged to take out a civil prosecution against the dog’s owner.

The 60-year-old, from Wreningham Road, Old Catton, said: “I’m sorry the dog has been put down as I love animals and I have a dog of my own.

“But it’s the irresponsibility of the dog owners that is to blame. I’m worried that this dog owner could get another pet and that could then attack someone else.

“We need responsible dog owners.

“They need to appreciate that dogs need to be trained, exercised, and fed properly, and that they are responsible for them. This dog could have attacked its owner or her children.This has left me terrified of dogs.”

It comes after a spate of dog attacks in the city.

Norwich South MP Simon Wright has raised the issue in a parliamentary debate on dangerous dogs, calling on local authorities and the government to take further action.

Mrs Brown was visiting her elderly father’s home in Elm Grove Lane, Old Catton, when the attack took place last month.

The neighbour’s dog had allegedly managed to get into her father’s garden and attacked him earlier that day, but he had managed to get between the wheelie bin and the car and avoid being injured.

But when Mrs Brown, who works as a business manager at Taverham High School, found out about the incident she went round to the neighbour’s house to tell them in courtesy that she would inform the police about what happened.

She said: “As soon as the neighbour opened the door, the dog, a rottweiler cross Rhodesian ridge back, jumped at me and nearly ripped my arm off. I was in terrible pain and shock, but we managed to get the dog off me.”

She was rushed to hospital by ambulance where a plastic surgeon stitched up her arm, but she was still left with a 2.5cm diameter hole in the arm.

She said: “I’ve been told that I’ve been scarred for life and that it will be up to a year before the arm is properly healed. There is also nerve damage.

“I still have to see a nurse and the bandage is dressed twice a week. I might also have to go back to my GP for more plastic surgery.”

She said the dog had got into her father’s garden about a month ago, and had also growled at her and her pet, and she had then warned the neighbour she would tell police if it happened again.

As it was her right arm that was bitten, she said she had ben unable to drive or play tennis or badminton. She returns to work next week and is hoping that she will be able to manage.

A Norwich police spokesman said: “Police were called to reports of a dog biting a woman at a property on Elm Grove Lane at 4.30pm on Tuesday, August 9. A woman had suffered wounds to her arm and went to the N&N for treatment.

“Officers spoke with both the injured lady and the owner of the dog. Whilst no criminal offences had been committed, the dog owner surrendered ownership of the dog which was taken away to be destroyed, and received strong words of advice.”

The dog’s owners did not want to comment.

Have you needed surgery after being attacked by a dog in Norwich? Call reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email david.bale2@archant.co.uk.


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