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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 September 2006, 14:51 GMT 15:51 UK
Bull terrier mauls four-year-old
Shannon Hills
Shannon's grandmother pulled her away from the dog
A four-year-old girl is recovering after being savaged by a family dog while visiting her grandmother.

Shannon Hills' face, head and neck were mauled by the Irish Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross in Christchurch, Dorset, on Saturday night.

Shannon's parents, Belinda and Duane, from New Milton, Hampshire, are furious the dog has not been put down and have asked the police to have it destroyed.

"God forbid this should happen to another child," said Mr Hill.

She has started having nightmares
Duane Hills

Bronson, the dog that attacked Shannon, belongs to Mr Hills' brother, Calvin.

It had had its muzzle removed to be fed when it savaged the little girl.

Her grandmother, Christine Hills, separated the child from the dog and she was taken to Poole Hospital.

Her injuries were stitched and she was kept in for two nights.

A South Western Ambulance Service spokesman said: "The injuries weren't life threatening but obviously a four-year-old with dog bites to the face is relatively serious."

Shannon Hills
The bites were so deep they damaged muscles on her face

Shannon's mother Belinda, 26, has demanded the dog be destroyed.

Shannon's father, Duane Hills, 31, said: "We are continuing to fight to have the dog destroyed.

"We have passed it on to the police and have left it to them to deal with."

"We couldn't live with ourselves if another child was injured or, God forbid, killed. We couldn't forgive ourselves."

The car valeter added: "The surgeon said because she is young she will heal well but the scars are always going to be there."

"She has started having nightmares. She was screaming 'Don't hurt me, help me.' Apart from that, we can't believe how well she is coping with it. She is a fighter."

Dorset Police said: "We have made inquiries on the family's behalf to the dog warden."

Dog bite boy's parents 'positive'
28 Sep 06 |  Southern Counties
Dog attack boy stable in hospital
27 Sep 06 |  Southern Counties
Boy seriously hurt in dog attack
26 Sep 06 |  Southern Counties

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