HAILSHAM: Tot home after pet dog attack

A TWO-YEAR-OLD is recovering at home after being mauled by a family dog in a ‘freak incident’.

Little Lewis Oliver, from Hailsham, needed stitches to his face after one of the family’s two pet Japanese akita dogs suddenly turned on the tot at his home in Butts Field on Hailsham’s Town Farm estate on Wednesday night (January 19).

It is believed the toddler was playing with the dog, called Kona, when it turned around and bit him in the face.

His horrified parents, Reme Keightley, 30, and Dean Oliver, a builder, called 999 and the boy was rushed to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton where he was treated for facial injuries.

Lewis is now recovering at home after being discharged from hospital.

Police described the attack as an “isolated incident,” and said there would be no criminal investigation.

The boy’s parents voluntarily handed Kona to police and the dog was destroyed. They plan to give up their second akita, Patchie, for re-homing. Lewis’s great aunt, Jane Keightley, from Hailsham, said, “We are all devastated at what has happened but relieved Lewis is alive and doing well, considering.

“He was bitten in the cheek and a flap of skin was hanging open and he was bitten on the arm. It sounds like the dog went for him while he was patting him. They have had the dogs since they were puppies, before Lewis was born, and they have always played beautifully with the children. They were used to them and have never shown any violence or aggression so we don’t understand what happened.

“This was just a freak incident. Kona has been with Lewis since he was born. Lewis plays with him and pats him and pulls at him and he is always fine. He is normally not like this at all. It is horrible.”