Babysitter dragged like a ‘rag toy’ during terrifying 45-minute husky dog attack

A babysitter feared she would die during a 45-minute attack by her friend's Siberian husky.

Rachel Anderson, 39, said she was dragged around and left with her arm "ripped open" after the terrifying ordeal, which happened while she was babysitting her friend Adel Johnson's two children.

The mum-of-two said she was able to get free when one of the children stabbed the dog called Storm with a knife on the counter. She was then able to call the police, who shot the dog dead.

Rachel said she had ten operations to repair the gaping wounds after the attack last Boxing Day in the home in Rednal, Birmingham.

Surgeons even discussed amputating her arm, but it was saved after doctors sewed it inside her stomach for four weeks to get the skin to grow back.

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Police have dropped the case but Rachel, a former hairdresser, is still unable to work and to use her right hand properly.

Rachel, from Skegness, said: "There has to be some kind of recognition. If you have a guard dog, have a guard dog. This was supposed to be a pet.

"I could see blood everywhere. I could see my face out the corner of my eye. My arm was all ripped open. I could see skin and fat everywhere.

"I remember it dragging me side to side, by the arm. At one stage I thought it was going to release me, but it was treating me like a chew toy.

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"It was sinking its teeth in, pulling me around, releasing it a bit to get a full grip again, letting me go to bite again.

"It was like I was a rag toy, moving its head back and forth.

"At some point I let my arm go with it, and went down to the ground with it.

"The noise was horrendous. It was that low growl.

"At one point I had it round the neck with my legs.

"All I could see was this knife on the side, willing it to jump in to my hands. I tried to get towards it, to pull the dog with me. It wouldn't move.

"It was like a horror film."

Rachel met Adel while working in a convenience store. She had visited Adel's home before, but the dog had been shut in the garden.  

Recalling the events of last Boxing Day, she said her friend's massive dog attacked her when she went to get one of the children a drink at around midnight.

She said: "It stood up and wagged its tail and I presumed it was going to be fine.

"I opened the kitchen door and it came into the front room. I didn't feel scared.

"The boy was jumping up and down on the settee and that's the last thing I saw before it went for me.

"I heard it before I saw it really.

"It was on my face. I screamed. I put my arm out to protect the little boy and next thing I knew the dog got hold of my arm, and dragged me off the settee and into the kitchen where it attacked me for 45 minutes.

"I would sit up and it would pull me down, then I was laying down, then sitting up.

"It got to the point I thought 'I'm going to die here in this kitchen'.

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"The only thing that kept me going was my little boy in my head, saying 'don't die, we need you'.

"I didn't want anyone to come home to a dead babysitter. What if it turned on the kids?

"I was screaming for the kids to help me. In the end, it got to the point where I shouted, 'Do you want me to die here?'

"I told them, 'You need to come in and stab this dog'."

The dog finally released its grip after one of the children stabbed it in its back. It was then thrown out into the garden by the young girl.

Rachel then called emergency services and was taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham.

She said one paramedic was so horrified, he had to step out for air.

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She said: "I opened my hands and all this fat and blood and tissue fell on the floor. I had collected it in my hands."

Rachel spent nearly two months in hospital and had multiple operations to clean the wound, stitch it up and carry out skin grafts.

At one point, she caught an infection which "ate" her arm muscle.

The skin grafts from the top of her arm refused to take and in a last attempt to save Rachel's arm, surgeons cut a flap in her stomach and sewed the limb inside for four weeks.

She said: "It felt so weird. My balance was all off and people were staring at me. I also had this scar down my face. And if I moved too much it felt like it was going to rip open."

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She initially gave statements to the police but after 10 months was told the CPS didn't want to progress the case because the dog was killed, she said.

"I didn't want to keep going through it with the police because I wanted it to be over, but I did it because I wanted what had happened to be recognised," said Rachel, who has scarring on her stomach, arm and face.

"It's hard to take. I feel like I have been screwed over.

"I feel like everyone else is just getting on with their life, but I've got to live with this for the rest of my life."

Rachel, who is still receiving treatment for her injuries, continued: "I've had to pack up work.

"I've got to look after my kids without being able to work. I could have been dead.

"The nightmares – I have had nightmares since that day.

"I have been put on antidepressants to keep things at bay. My four-year-old daughter has anxiety about me going anywhere."

West Midlands Police confirmed the case was closed, with no further action.

A spokeswoman said the decision was made by the CPS who felt "there was insufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction".

Adel said she did not want to comment.

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