Two pet rottweilers which mauled an 8-year-old Christchurch
boy at the weekend had attacked a 4-year-old boy in the same
park just weeks before.
Mason Bennett, 8, requires plastic surgery for head, face and
leg injuries after being tossed in the air during the attack,
witnessed by his stepsister about 8am on Saturday.
The youngster had taken the two pet dogs to nearby Linfield
Park in Bromley when they suddenly turned on him.
The girl raised the alarm and a family member ran into the
park to rescue him.
He was taken to hospital, where he has already undergone
surgery, and will require more operations.
The dogs will be destroyed on the orders from the family.
But today it's emerged that the two dogs had attacked at the
Roy Wilson, 4, was set upon on August 3 while his dad Walt
A witness to the first attack, Leon van Wyk, heard dogs
barking and turned round to see them pounce on the youngster.
"They pinned him to the ground and, seriously, dragged him
along the ground like a doll,'' Mr van Wyk said.
"The were ganging up on him and obviously had the feeling
they were bigger than the boy and could take him.''
Roy was saved from severe injuries by wearing a thick jersey
He's now terrified of dogs, and his parents, Roy and Jennifer
Wilson, are angry the near miss didn't serve as a stark
warning the dogs' owners.
"We keep thinking, 'Oh my God, that could've been our son',''
Mrs Wilson said today.
Mr Wilson, 37, knew about the incident but was unaware until
today the dogs had grabbed hold of his son.
On the day it happened he approached the owners, who live at
Mr Wilson said they were apologetic at the time and accepted
they should have a padlock on their gate to stop the dogs
from getting into the park.
But if he'd known exactly how close his son had come to
injury, he says he'd have pushed them harder _ and possibly
even phoned police.
"If my son had been put in hospital, I'd be facing charges
for killing two dogs and I'd have save that boy from being
mauled,'' he says.
"I'm so angry. I called dog control and told them it wasn't
the last they'd hear from me, and now their kid is in
When Mr van Wyk heard of Saturday's attack, he was "shocked,
but not surprised, having seen how the dogs reacted''.
"When Walt approached the dog owners, I was standing outside,
and even as a grown man, I was petrified of them,'' Mr van
Wyk, 34, said.
"They didn't look shaggy, they were well looked after, but
not good to be on the loose on their own.''
Police say they have "concerns'' over Mason's scalp and face
"It was a vicious attack. His sister says the dogs had been
throwing the boy in the air,'' Inspector Derek Erasmus said
The family are assisting police with their ongoing
investigation, he said, which will determine whether the
owners will be charged.
A spokeswoman for Canterbury District Health Board said they
could not provide a condition update because the boy's family
had asked for "complete privacy''.
The attack comes after Chloe Jane Mathewson, 31, was mauled
to death by two large rottweilers in Redvale near Auckland in
It's believed there have been six recorded fatal dog attacks
in New Zealand.