A woman mauled by a dog in an attack in Australia has had her arm amputated, and is at risk of losing another.
Ambulance crews arrived to a property in Palmerston, Darwin, in Northern Territory, at 1:50 a.m. local time on Sunday morning to find the 50-year-old woman with “significant injuries,” said a St John Ambulance Australia spokesperson in a statement Newsweek. Local media mentioned a 61-year-old woman. Newsweek has contacted St John Ambulance Australia to seek clarification.
The woman was transported to Royal Darwin Hospital as a priority patient and remains in critical condition. So far the woman has had one arm amputated and doctors are trying to save her other arm, the spokesperson said.
When ambulance crews arrived to the scene, bystanders were attempting to subside the woman’s bleeding, ABC Australia reported.
St John Ambulance NT operations manager Craig Garraway told ABC Australia that the reports they had of the attack were “quite horrific.”
He told the news outlet that photographs of the woman’s injuries had “shocked him.” He said the injuries had been a lot worse than he imagined.
“‘Injuries that obviously those first responders, family and friends and police had to endure prior to paramedics arriving,” he told the news outlet.
Northern Territory police told ABC Australia they arrived to find an “aggressive dog” on the scene. The dog responsible for the attack was surrendered by the owner and seized. It is not clear what breed the dog was.
There was also another dog at the property, which was also acting aggressively, ABC Australia reported. The police also seized this dog and confirmed to ABC Australia that they are no longer within the community or posing a danger to anyone.
Northern Territory police told ABC Australia that it was looking into the attack. Nobody has been charged yet however Commander Sachin Sharma told ABC that police “implore all dog owners to make sure their animals are properly trained, controlled and restrained.”
Sharma told ABC it was “a terrible incident” and the woman has “suffered life-altering injuries.”
The owners of dogs that attack people could face prosecution and warnings, according to the Palmerston Council website. In cases of severe attacks, the council said the dogs must be removed from the area, and court orders can even be sought to have the dog euthanized.
The council is currently working with the police to investigate the attack.
Chief executive at the council, Luccio Cercarelli told Mail Online: “Our thoughts are with the victim and the victim’s family, and all others that have been impacted by the incident, including our staff, NT Police and St John Ambulance…This is an ongoing police matter and City of Palmerston will continue to work with NT Police during this investigation.”