Pitbulls kill woman

A QUIET East London suburb is reeling in shock after a 45-year-old woman was mauled to death by pitbull terriers.

The attack took place in Baysville when Heidi Pook from Beacon Bay visited the home of a friend. She was with two male friends, one the homeowner, when the dogs attacked her shortly after midnight on Thursday.

The incident happened at the back of the property. East London police spokesman Captain Stephen Marais said an inquest docket has since been opened.

“It is alleged the deceased and two of her male friends arrived at the house that belonged to one of the male friends. The deceased was then attacked by the dog and it cannot be confirmed how many dogs attacked her as there was two full grown and two small pitbulls in the yard,” said Marais.

Pook was declared dead on the scene.

Paramedic Paul Fick was one of the first to arrive at the house after the attack.

“She lost a lot of blood and she had a severe neck injury with bites in the stomach and waist,” said Fick.

“She was badly mauled by those dogs and there were signs of internal bleeding but when we arrived at the scene, we found her at the back of the vehicle but she was already dead.”

Fick said the two men had to be rushed to hospital.

“The men were emotional and one was breaking everything. Police had to take them to hospital as one was in a very bad state after he saw what happened.”

The Saturday Dispatch visited the Baysville house where the attack happened but the dog owners were too distraught to comment.

“We are shocked. Our thoughts are with her family,” said a woman outside the house.

The Saturday Dispatch also visited the home of the deceased in Beacon Bay, but her father said he was not ready to speak to the media.

Neighbours in Baysville said they were shocked to hear the noise in the early hours of the morning.

One resident said: “The people from that house were swearing and dogs barking for an hour or so.

“We didn’t know what was happening until we saw police lights outside the house. We are still shocked in this quiet area. Baysville is a lovely peaceful neighbourhood.”

One of the neighbours said the dogs managed to get out of the property a few weeks ago. “The owner chased them and found them down the road. We are always scared of these dogs and look at what happened now.”

Marais said the SPCA was called and the dogs were removed. The SPCA’s Lionel Taylor confirmed the removal of three pitbulls.

“They are here with us and they will be kept here until a decision is taken by the courts as to what to do with them,” said Taylor.

Pitbull breeder Gawie Grobler of Manjaro Kennels in Fort Beaufort, who has been breeding pitbull terriers since 1963, said people usually trained their pitbulls to be vicious.

“Pitbulls are humanly dogs and if you tease them and train them to be aggressive they become vicious,” said Grobler. — bonganif@dispatch.co.za

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