‘It was a bit and run’: Shock dog attack on teenager
THE mother of a Gold Coast boy attacked by a dog on an Elanora street is pleading with pet owners not to "bite and run".
Julie Preston says her 16-year-old son Zeph was riding his bike along a path off Avocado Street on Saturday when a "big black dog" being walked by its owner jumped up and bit him on the back of the leg.
The bite caused puncture wounds and caused Zeph to miss two days of work, she said.
A dog owner herself, Ms Preston said she was disappointed that the dog's owner failed to contact her or leave any details with Zeph.
"I have three dogs, I love them and I understand owners are concerned about what an attack will mean for their dog - if they would be put down.
"But the fact is if my dog did that I would still look after the person first and make sure the kids are OK and contact their parents. Call their mum, not say 'all right see you later'."
Ms Preston said her son, an apprentice carpenter, was still suffering from the bite.
The owner allegedly told the boy that the dog hadn't bitten anyone before, but did not leave their details.
"I understand dogs are skittish but he was just riding his bike past when it jumped and bit him," Ms Preston said.
"What we need are rules around what is OK to do and what isn't when it comes to attacks.
"Just like a car crash, people should be obligated to leave their details and make a record of it.
"There also needs to be a better understanding of the process. Not every dog will be put down. I think that is why people fear coming forward.
"I don't want a witch hunt but if it happened to a toddler it would be a bigger issue.
"There needs to be some responsibility."
Under Gold Coast Council policy, a dog is not automatically destroyed once an attack is reported.
After collecting evidence council officers may declare a dog dangerous (if it is a serious attack) or menacing.
This declaration imposes higher registration fees and restrictions on the keeping of the animal. Penalties for the owner of a dog involved in an attack may also include fines, removal of the dog from the area, seizure or destruction.
Originally published as 'It was a bit and run': Shock dog attack on Gold Coast teen