The distraught father of a toddler mauled by the family dog said he turned his back for just seconds when the animal attacked.
Little Adelaide girl Scarlett Loffler, who is just 20-months-old, was rushed to the Women’s and Children’s Hospital with facial injuries after the family’s pet Staffordshire cross bit her on the face.
Scarlett was playing with her older brother at their Elizabeth East home when her dad let the dog inside.
Lashing out, the dog sunk its teeth into her face.
“My partner’s just come over to me to say the poor little girl next door has just been attacked by the family dog, which is really horrific,” neighbour Emma Burton told 7 News.
As Scarlett was rushed to hospital, family members raced to the home to comfort the distraught father.
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Moments later, a council worker arrived to seize the dog, which was put down on Thursday afternoon.
The family said this was the first time their beloved pet had ever shown any signs of aggression.
“If a pet attacks a child then it should be destroyed, because it’s just not on,” neighbour Gavan Van Dyke said.
Scarlett’s father told 7 News he had looked away from his children for only seconds when the dog attacked.
The toddler was treated for a puncture wound to her cheek and a gash to her lip.
“Dogs are very unpredictable, you just don’t know what’s going to happen,” Ms Burton said.