The family of a 14-month-old girl fatally mauled by a dog in country Victoria had only been in the township for a few months before her death.
The toddler was set upon in the kitchen of a rural property at Neerim Junction, more than 120km east of Melbourne in the Gippsland region, early on Thursday morning.
The little girl died at the scene despite treatment by paramedics.
Baw Baw Shire mayor Joe Gauci said the family’s pet German Wirehaired Pointer had been seized by the council and the family had consented for it to be destroyed.
Counselling services for the community had been set up at the local hall, he said.
“When it’s a young child, I think it’s even harder for the community to take,” he told reporters.
“It’s tragic. It’s a new family that’s moved into our local area and I don’t know how you put words to it. It’s just a tragic event that’s happened. And we’ll just work through it.”
The shire’s chief executive officer Alison Leighton said the girl’s death would “shake” the community.
“Neerim Junction… is a tight-knit community and we certainly want to make sure that they feel council’s support in a tragedy such as this,” Ms Leighton said.
Police are investigating the circumstances of the attack and will prepare a report for the coroner.