I was savaged by bull terrier… its jaws were millimetres from ripping my eye out – 3 chilling signs a dog may attack | The Sun

A DOG attack victim has revealed how she was savaged by a bull terrier and left millimetres from having her eye ripped out.

Lily-Blue Whitehurst, then 17, was left with devastating facial injuries after her friend's pet launched at her in September 2021.

She had been stroking the bull terrier in her lap at the time, before the dog sprung into the attack when she moved forward in her seat.

Lily told MailOnline: "The bite was millimetres from my eyes. One cut was across my eyelid.

"I couldn't open one eye for about two weeks and my forehead swelled up."

She was left with a broken nose and requiring 28 stitches.

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Victims fortunate to have survived such horrific attacks have come forward to reveal how they are now so terrified of aggressive dogs they are purchasing "doggy armour" for their own pets.

It comes as dog attacks have hit a record high, with hospital admissions rising six per cent last year to 9,336.

NHS Digital data shows the number of attacks have almost doubled from 4,699 since 2007/08.

The following year, 2019/20 saw 8,933 recorded cases.

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Admissions then dropped to 7,424 during Covid lockdowns in 2020/21 but they rose again to 2021/22 to 8,819 before hitting a record high of 9,366 between 2022/23.

Of those cases 3,743 victims required reconstructive surgery, and the majority of those undergoing surgery were children.

The number of fatal dog attacks in England and Wales remained around three per year across 2001 to 2021, but rose to ten in 2022 and seven have already been recorded so far this year.

Natasha Johnston, 28, was was walking eight dogs in Caterham, Surrey, when she was attacked on January 23.

An inquest into her death heard how Natasha died from "multiple penetrating dog bites to the neck".

A further five fatal attacks have taken place since.

Four-year-old Alice Stones was killed when the family dog attacked her in the back garden of their home; Wayne Stevens, 51, was killed in April by a dog owned by his brother at his Derby home; and dad-of-five Jonathan Hogg died from injuries caused by an out of control dog in Leigh.

In other attacks during the current spate in Caerphilly, Jack Lis, 10, died after being mauled by an American or XL Bully dog – a legal breed – in November 2021.

Louise Hart, a prevention and community manager at Dogs Trust, warned of three signs to be wary of when a dog is about to lunge into an attack.

She told MailOnline: "They don't have words, so their way of showing conflict is to bark or snap to create space, to feel more comfortable."

"A lot of bites to children are generally on their face and hands — and that's because they're leaning over the dog, getting in close.'

Last month, The Sun revealed Britain's most dangerous spots for dog attacks.

Skin consultant Vanessa Jane Davies said: "I have seen a significant rise in referrals for children and adults who have been bitten or struck by a dog.

"I treat men and women on a monthly basis for dog attacks, however, it’s often the young children who are at the highest risk of dog attack injuries and they are particularly vulnerable to bites to the face and neck.

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"Every case is different, but typically the injuries are permanent and potentially life changing which requires long term care both medically and psychologically, often resulting in a fear of dogs, losing confidence to be out."

The RSPCA advises anyone who is concerned about their dog’s behaviour to speak to their vet and a clinical animal behaviourist for advice.

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