A WOMAN died in hospital on Saturday- five days after being attacked by two dogs that had escaped from their neighbour’s home in the Alguazas area of Murcia.
96-year-old Josefa Bravo suffered fatal bites from the two female dogs aged between six and eight months which were said to be crosses between an American Staffordshire Terrier and an American bully.
The animals are being kept at a specialist centre in Mazarron and had no micro-chips, insurance or any other documentation despite them being in the ‘dangerous dogs’ category.
Two other dogs- including their mother, were discovered to have no registration papers.
The attack happened a few metres from Josefa’s home last Tuesday afternoon when the dogs escaped from their property with the owner not present.
According to municipal sources, she was bit in several parts of her body- especially in her arm which was badly torn.
“The lady had gone out to feed the stray cats that hang around the door of her house, as she usually does, when she found the dogs, which apparently attacked her,” said neighbour Juan.
He told the La Verdad newspaper: “I heard the screams of her niece, who lives with her, and the Guardia Civil were called to try and free her from the clutches of the dogs.”
An ambulance crew could not initially treat Josefa due to the aggressive nature of the dogs and had to wait for relatives of the owner to take control of them.
She was admitted to Murcia’s Morales Meseguer Hospital but could not be operated on due to her advanced age, and died on Saturday.
The dog’s owner is a 24-year-old man who was working in Almeria when the fatal attack happened.
He faces a possible reckless homicide charge and fines of up to €500,000.
The man-named as Jesus- gave a detailed account to La Verdad after his father and girlfriend restrained the animals.
“The dogs escaped through a manhole, the cover of which I don’t know how they managed to open.”
“I have everything precisely fenced, so that there is no way for them to get out and I think that in that aspect I have done what I could,” he added.
“Surely the dogs got nervous when they saw the stray cats and they are almost puppies and tend to play.”
“I believe that the woman would not have died if it were not for her advanced age, because it is not only the injuries that the animals may have caused, which perhaps were not so serious, but also what you suffer when you fall,” speculated Jesus.
Jesus assessed that since he did not keep the dogs at home, he didn’t believe that he needed insurance and added that he prefers ‘not to see them again’.
Josefa Bravo’s funeral took place on Sunday and Alguazas council held a minute’s silence in her memory on the Town Hall steps on Monday.