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Tyersal dog attack victim speaks out over 'shocking' figures
11:00am Thursday 5th September 2013 in News
The victim of a sickening Bradford dog attack has expressed his shock at the number of similar incidents taking place in the city.
As the Telegraph & Argus revealed yesterday, 94 people were admitted to hospitals in the Bradford district with injuries from dog bites or strikes in the 12 months up to May this year, according to a Health and Social Care Information Centre report.
He has since undergone five operations on his injured limb.
“Those numbers are surprisingly high, it’s shocked me to be honest,” he said. “It goes to show that there are lots of incidents that you never hear about, just the high-profile ones.”
Figures showed that Yorkshire and the Humber had the second highest number of admissions in the country for dog attacks between June 2012 and May 2013, a total of 925, with 94 in Bradford placing the district as the eighth most dangerous local authority area in the country in terms of dog attack risk.
“These attacks can happen anywhere, but there do seem to be a lot of owners of so-called dangerous dogs here,” said Mr Hirst.
“They should be made to register them with the police, and if the dogs pose a risk they should either be inside or have a muzzle. I can’t understand how the owners don’t realise this.
“I’m recovering slowly but surely, but I’ll never get the use of my arm back properly.”
Another recent case involved a 13-year-old boy, named locally as Luca, who suffered neck injuries in an attack in Great Horton on August 18. He has since been discharged from hospital.
Currently attacks that take place on private property cannot be fully investigated by police, but new legislation could see irresponsible owners facing a ten-year jail term should their animals cause serious injury, regardless of where the incident takes place.
A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: “The law around dog bites states that if a person is bitten by a dog on private property then it is a civil matter and does not fall under police jurisdiction.
“If a person is bitten by a dog on public property, then potentially an offence of having a dangerous or out-of-control dog could be applied and officers would duly investigate.
“We always encourage responsible dog ownership and urge people to keep their dog under control at all times, whether on public or private property.”
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