Girl "recovering" after dog attack

They were called to a house in Bellinge on Sunday night after reports that two people had been injured.

A five year old girl had been bitten in the face and her stepfather had suffered wounds to his arm as he'd tried to free her from the jaws of family pet.

The large American bulldog, a breed not banned under the Dangerous Dogs Act, was contained and left in the house in Hanemill Court before being taken away by a specialist animal handler on Monday.  It has since been humanely destroyed.

The girl has been named locally as Tanisha Hall and police say she is recovering well in hospital. Heart understands she may be released from hospital on Wednesday.

It's been reported the dog had been taken in by the family from a home and may have been ill-treated in the past. 

John Cromwell lives near the house and told us: "I've seen the little girl many times in the garden, playing with her toys and I've seen her in the garden with the dog as well, you know, not a problem.  But I believe she went to kiss the dog and that's when it went for her."

"I'd seen the dog before and it just seemed like a placid sort of dog really I didn't think it had any aggressive tendencies or anything.  I was quite surprised, it was a bit of a shock."

Another neighbour, a 50-year-old woman who did not want to be named, said: "I've seen her playing out in the court. She's a typical little girl, whizzing around on her bike. She's very playful.''

Police said the girl's family did not wish to make any comment.<