Woman attacked by dog wants new stricter licenses for owners
Warning: graphic images
A woman who almost lost her arm after being attacked by a dog has called for tougher restrictions on owners.
Mum-of-two Rachel Anderson, 43, was babysitting for a friend in 2018 when her pet husky, Storm, smashed his teeth into her face before devastating her arm in a brutal 45-minute assault.
The Skegness housewife was left with gashes and required nearly a dozen surgeries to fix her arm.
Four years later, Rachel’s wounds have healed, but she still can’t use her hand properly and she says the psychological scars remain.
To this day, Rachel says she “cries with fear” when she hears a dog growl and wants stricter rules for dog owners.
Following the death of a woman in Surrey who was attacked by a pack of dogs last week, Rachel said she welcomes the suggestion that dog owners should have licences.
Rachel, a stay-at-home mum from Lincoln, Lincolnshire, said: “I think dog attacks are the fault of the owners, not the dogs. It’s the environment they live in.
“Dog licenses would make the country safer for everyone – they would prevent people from having too many dogs or for the wrong reasons.
“Any normal person who really cares about their dog wouldn’t mind getting a dog
“Dog licenses ensure that people who shouldn’t have dogs don’t.
“What’s stopping this woman who owned the dog that attacked me from buying another puppy?”
Rachel, who lives with husband Wayne Anderson, 46, was caring for her friend’s two children on December 26, 2018 when she was attacked.
Her friend’s Siberian Husky, who she said would normally be kept outside, closed its jaws on Rachel’s face before biting her on the arm.
Rachel said: “I could see blood everywhere. I could see my face out of the corner of my eye. My arm was all torn open. I could see skin and fat everywhere.
“I remember my arm being pulled from side to side. At one point I thought it would set me free, but it treated me like a chew toy.’
She was only able to free herself when one of the children stabbed the dog with a knife on the counter – and called the police, who she claims shot the dog.
Her penis was saved when medics stitched it into her abdomen for four weeks to allow new skin to grow.
Although Rachel’s physical wounds have since healed, the damage to her arm means she will likely never return to hairdressing.
She said: “I never take my own dog to the park in case other dogs want to come over and play. Whenever I hear a growl, I start crying.”
Following reports of a dog attack in Caterham, Surrey that left a 28-year-old woman dead in hospital and another woman injured, people are calling for the UK to reintroduce a licensing system for dog owners.
Rachel said: “This woman who died the other night would terrify me to think of what was going through her mind when she was attacked.”
Rachel says she supports a licensing system not seen for dog owners in the UK since 1987, when they were abolished.
She suggests that “most dogs naturally don’t want to attack – it’s either what they’re shown or they don’t know any better.”
“I don’t think it’s the dog, it’s the owners. With proper treatment, any breed can be good. It’s the owners and the environment it’s in.”
Rachel believes that a licensing system would allow this to be better monitored and owners held accountable for their dogs’ actions.
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https://metro.co.uk/2023/01/23/woman-savaged-by-dog-wants-new-stricter-licenses-for-owners-18153508/ Woman attacked by dog wants new stricter licenses for owners