Two men witnessed the death of a 37-year-old Port Alfred woman as she was mauled by dogs. Authorities are searching for the owners of the dogs, as well as the two eyewitnesses.
The South African Police Service (Saps) confirmed an inquest docket had been opened and the investigation continues.
Another dog attack
Port Alfred woman mauled to death
As confirmed by Colonel Priscilla Naidu, the woman was on her way to work when she was attacked by dogs of an unknown breed.
“The woman was walking in Alfred Road (Eastern Cape) when she was attacked. Two males who witnessed the attack, ran to a nearby security official and reported the incident”, Naidu said.
Naidu said the security guard informed the police. Officials found her at the side of the road – she “sustained serious injuries to her face and upper body”.
Search on for dogs, eyewitnesses
The dogs were “nowhere to be found”, and Naidu said the woman passed away at the scene before she could “receive any medical attention”.
The investigation continues and authorities in Port Alfred are searching for the owner of the dogs. Naidu said:
“The number and breed of the dogs are unknown at this stage and we believe the two men who witnessed the incident can provide crucial information”.
Anyone with information pertaining to the owner of the dogs, as well as the two eyewitnesses, is asked to contact Colonel Yogan Reddy on 046 604 2405 or 082 332 8794.
Recent dog attacks
A number of dog attacks have made headlines in South Africa recently, resulting in a petition to ban pit bulls specifically.
Earlier this week, a 15-month-old baby was mauled at Gonubie Farm in East London and reportedly died at Frere Hospital in the Eastern Cape.
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.
In a separate incident, a three-year-old toddler was killed in Free State.
The owner of the pit bulls, 21-year-old Lebohang Pali, was arrested and charged in accordance with the Animals Amendment Act.
Angry community members captured one of the pit bulls and burned it alive. The other dog was killed by police.
Regulations, not a pit bull ban
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) said it was not in support of the petition, but did call for the implementation of stronger regulations for owning the dogs.
SPCA spokesperson Keshvi Nair said imposing a ban would not necessarily reduce the number of pit bull attacks, as could be gleaned from similar bans in other countries.
Implementing regulation for compulsory sterilisation and castration of the animals would require accountability on the part of the owners, Nair said.
“So if you want this animal, there needs to be some form of accountability and responsibility with owners. Where did you get the dog from? What are you going to use the dog for? Where are you going to keep the dog? Is the property you have adequate for the dog”.
Additional reporting by Kgomotso Phooko.