Boy, 2, suffered horrific facial injuries after dog attack by ‘best friend’ Staffordshire Bull Terrier



A mother has shared graphic images of how their beloved family dog ​​almost tore off their the toddler son’s face despite them being “best friends” as she warned even ‘trusted’ pets can maim children.

Jodie Griffiths, 35, was at work when she received the heart-stopping call from her partner, their two-year-old son Romy had been seriously bitten.

The youngster and his siblings had been playing in the living room with new flying helicopters toys while eight-year-old family dog ​​Blizzard slept on the couch nearby.

Romy’s dad, Daniel Griffiths, 32, had only looked away for a second before the boy screamed out in agony and he turned back to find him covered in blood after a single bite tore through his nose.

Distressing photos show how little Romy was left with deep lacerations across his nose and face, a fractured jaw and even missing teeth from the attack on 27 December.

The parents said the dog was their son’s “best friend” and had never been aggressive before, leaving them convinced he had been startled awake by the flying toy and lunged at the boy’s face in shock. Since the attack was put down to an accident the couple were allowed to keep Blizzard. But Jodie admitted she would never “trust” him again so they were forced to give up their beloved family pet.

Romy Griffiths, 2, with his beloved family dog ​​Blizzard the Staffie, 8

(KennedyNews and Media)

The ultrasound assistant has now shared shocking photos of her son’s injuries to warn other parents about the risk of dog attacks.

Ms Griffiths, from Walsall, West Midlands, said: “The kids were playing in the front room with their flying helicopters and the dog was asleep on the chair.

“My partner had got up to go to the kitchen but didn’t even get to the kitchen – he heard Romy scream and turned around and that was just how fast it happened.

“I think the dog was startled awake by one of the flying helicopters and Romy’s face must just have been right there.”

Ms Griffiths was at work and got a call from her partner saying the dog had bitten their child.

“When I got home Romy was covered in blood and my partner was covered in his blood as well,” she said.

“He was screaming and then he started dozing off to sleep – the doctors said it was because of the shock. Then they gave him morphine until he went to theater.”

The mother said she did not quite realize how bad it was until after his surgery because he wouldn’t let anyone look at his face.

She added: “It fractured his jaw, ripped all of his nose, ripped out three teeth from the root – he had to have hundreds and hundreds of stitches, they lost count of how many.

“The damage was really bad on the inside of his nose and they said if the dog had bit down a little bit more his whole nose would have been bitten off.”

After the terrifying phone call, Ms Griffiths rushed home and the parents took her son to New Croft Hospital in Wolverhampton.

From there, Romy was transferred to Birmingham Children’s Hospital where he underwent surgery the following day to stitch his nose back together.

What was meant to be a two-hour operation ended up taking five hours due to the extensive damage to the boy’s face, followed by two nights in hospital recovering.

The beloved mutt Blizzard had been part of the family for the majority of his eight-year life since being a puppy and had never shown any signs of aggression before.

Jodie said that police officers attended their home the same day and agreed that what happened was an ‘accident’, meaning Blizzard could stay with the family if they wished.

But the mother of eight admits she would never be able to trust the dog around her children again and so they decided to surrender him to the police to be rehomed.

Jodie said: “Blizzard has always been a family dog ​​who loved to play, loved a fuss and wanted to get involved with everything.

“He was a soft dog and the kids loved him to death. He was Romy’s best friend of her.

“I don’t think it was a planned attack. He’s not continued the attack or ragged him about or anything, all that damage was just from one bite.

“At the end of the day I will always put my kids first and it was the best thing for the dog to go and hopefully be rehomed.

“I would never have trusted him around my kids again, I don’t trust any dog ​​anymore.

“One came up to Romy in the street when he was in the pram and I spun the pram round and started screaming hysterically to get it away from him.”

Romy, who has been left with scarring on his face, has to have checkups at the hospital as he grows due to concerns that the amount of stitching done to his nose will prevent it from growing with him.

Doctors have warned that he may need another operation by the time he is four and further surgery when he is a teenager to reshape his nose and nostrils to his growing face.

The mother now hopes to warn other parents about the risks of having a dog around children, after being forced to rehome the pet she thought she could trust with her children.

Ms Griffiths said: “Even looking at him now I can’t believe he’s got to live with this scar but he is healing beautifully.

“I want to raise awareness and I wouldn’t advise anyone with kids to have a dog because even if it’s an accident it can still happen.

“People love their dogs and say ‘my dog ​​would never do that’ but we used to say the same.”

After surrendering Blizzard to the police to be rehomed, the dog was given a “thorough assessment.” But it was determined he could not be rehomed due to the nature of the incident and he humanely destroyed.

A West Midlands Police spokesperson said: “We were called to an address in Wolverhampton on 27 December 2021 to reports a child had been bitten by a dog.

“The two-year-old was taken to hospital and treated for serious injuries to his face.

“The dog, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier Cross was seized under Section 3 of the Dangerous Dog Act.

“The ownership of the dog was transferred to the police. Following a thorough assessment it was established the dog could never be rehomed due to the violent act and they were humanely destroyed.”


www.independent.co.uk

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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