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By Citizen Reporter

Journalist


Toddler mauled to death by pit bull in Eastern Cape

The one-year-old was said to have died at Frere Hospital.


Another child has succumbed to injuries incurred after being mauled by a pit bull.

The 15-month-old reportedly died at Frere Hospital, a source told DispatchLive.

ALSO READ: Pit bull petition to protect humans and animals endorsed by NSPCA

Deadly attack

In a statement released on Thursday, Eastern Cape police confirmed the incident.

The attack took place on at Gonubie Farm in East London on Wednesday afternoon.

According to police, the boy was playing with the neighbour’s pit bull in a yard when a passerby walked past the property with their dog.

The pit bull began barking at the dog and tried to get out of the yard. He then reportedly turned around and bit the child in his upper body.

The boy was rushed to a nearby hospital, but succumbed to his injuries.

String of attacks

The toddler is the third child this month to die after being attacked by pit bulls.

On Sunday, three-year-old Keketso Saul was killed by a pit bull while playing in a neighbour’s yard.

The owner of the dog, 21-year-old Lebohang Pali, has since been arrested and charged with keeping dangerous dogs, in accordance with the Animals Amendment Act,  OFM News reported.

He was granted R300 bail and was due to appear in court again on Wednesday morning.

A week prior, eight-year-old Olebogeng Mosime was mauled to death by a pit bull in the Vista Park area in Bloemfontein.

The dog reportedly escaped by jumping over a fence and entering the yard where Mosime was playing.

A petition was launched by the Sizwe Kupelo Foundation last month to ban the ownership of pit bulls, in a bid to prevent further attacks and deaths.

This was spurred on by the mauling to death of 10-year-old Storm Nuku by two pit bulls at his home in Gelvandale, Gqeberha in September.

The SPCA has had its hands full over the past few weeks since the surge in tragic attacks. Many pit bulls have been surrendered to the SPCA by frightened owners.

Pit bulls have also been poisoned, stabbed, beaten and set alight by angry community members in response to the incidents.

ALSO READ: Angry residents, stab, stone and burn three pit bulls after they mauled a girl

Government action needed

In a statement released on Wednesday, the National Council of Societies for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) formally addressed the Department of Agriculture, Rural Development and Land Reform, imploring them to make their strategy to address the “national issue” known.

According to Section 10 of the Animal Protection Act no 71 of 1962, the department’s minister Thoko Didiza has the authority to promulgate new regulations in terms of the pit bull petition.

“There is an urgent need for government intervention with regard to this issue, failing which humans and animals could be harmed at an even greater scale,” NSPCA public relations officer Keshvi Nair said.

ALSO READ: Child killed by pitbull that jumped fence while playing outside

Compiled by Nica Richards.

The Citizen is awaiting comment from Dekeda. Updates on the latest attack to follow as more information is made available.