Pregnant Mother Left With 'Face Hanging Off' After Akita Attack
Laura Holmes, 21, feared her unborn baby would die after being attacked by an Akita at a friends house - leaving her with life changing injuries.
The young mother was upstairs and saw the dog looking out of the window. She was sitting on the bed sending a text when the 7 stone canine attacked her without warning.
''I looked up from my phone and then I saw this dog launching itself at me - and before I knew it I was in the worst pain I'd ever felt in my life,' said Miss Holmes, from Nottingham, 'My first thought was for my baby - I was terrified the attack would mean I would lose him. I was trying to scream and tear the dog off my face but he wouldn't let go.'
Miss Holmes' friends then tried to pull the pet off her, and resorted to kicking the dog to halt the attack. She then ran to the bathroom and leant over the sink. Looking down, she was horrified to see that her own flesh had fallen into the sink.
Miss Holmes was rushed to hospital, where it was decided that she have a C-section to maximise the chances of saving her unborn child. Fortunately, despite her horrific injuries, her son Nathaniel - now 15 weeks old - was born without any other complications. Miss Holmes required 60 stitches and was told by doctors that she was lucky to be alive. However, the attack has left her with bad facial scarring, which requires further surgery.
'I'm too upset to even look in the mirror now,' she added.
The Akita, Koda, had bitten someone 4 years previously but his owner Tracie Taylor was not prosecuted at the time. Taylor surrendered the dog to police after the attack and he was destroyed. Changes in the law now means that punishments for owners who fail to control their dogs are more severe, with fatal dog attacks carrying a maximum of 14 years (up from 2 years) imprisonment.
Taylor recieved a 16-week jail sentence suspended for a year and was ordered to pay Miss Holmes £1000 - she has also been banned from keeping animals in the future.
Police Constable Steve Feary said the conviction was the first of its kind it Nottingham under the new laws, and served as an example of how pet owners will be held accountable for their pets from now on.
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