Cape Town - A teenage girl from Bonnievale who fought off pit bulls to protect her siblings was left severely injured.
Vuyiswa Mase, 14, pictured, was attacked while she and her siblings aged 11 and 8 were collecting wood.
When she saw the dogs she told the others to go and call for help.
The three blood-thirsty dogs mauled her; the arrival of her grandmother Gladys Xanywa didn’t stop the hounds.
“It took an hour to fight the dogs off us. I was bitten on my arms and legs, I have deep wounds and my left ring finger doesn’t work anymore.
“Vuyiswa’s arms and legs were also injured, she managed to cover her face.
“She is still in hospital, I could say that she is in a stable condition.”
Xanywa told the Cape Argus the teenager ended up in a mud pool.
“I managed to get her out of the pool. She then grabbed a stick and tried to hit the dogs; they ran away.
“A farmworker came and I told him to go and call the dog owner, other people came around and protected us from the relentless dogs.
“The owner came with bandages and called the ambulance and that was the last time I saw him. We have since opened a case with the Bonnievale police.”
The Rural and Farmworkers Development Organisation executive director, Billy Claasen, said they were planning to take civil action against the dog owner.
“We take note and are shocked by the brutal attack by pit bull dogs on children and their grandmother on a farm nearby Bonnievale.
“It is reported that on Sunday August 20, three minor children aged 14, 11 and 8 went to look for some firewood when the attack happened.
“They were admitted to hospital on August 20, and the grandmother was discharged on August 25. Her 14-year-old grandchild is still in the hospital.
“We will assist the family with laying criminal charges against the owner of the dogs and will also assist them further with civil action. We will also send a nomination letter to the Office of the President to nominate the 14-year-old for bravery.”
We are of the view that dogs like these should have been behind proper fencing. Claasen said Vuyiswa and Xanywa could have been killed by the dogs.
“The farmer goes on as if it is nothing. He does not care about the trauma the family went through because he took the dogs for a drive and let them run in front of his bakkie, close to the house of this family.
“This is the same farmer who dumped kraal manure in front of this family’s home and tried to evict them several times. In the past they have opened several cases at the Bonnievale police station and nothing happened.”
Police spokesperson Joseph Swartbooi said the circumstances surrounding the incident were still under investigation.
“Two victims were transported to a nearby hospital for medical treatment. A criminal case was registered on Friday when the elderly person informed Bonnievale SAPS. “Bonnievale SAPS registered an inquiry for further investigation.” Anyone with information or who witnessed the incident can call Crime Stop at 08600 10111.