Dubbo woman, 87, attacked by dog in Queen Street

BATTERED AND BRUISED: Dubbo resident Ilma Murphy, 87, has reported of being attacked by a dog in Queen Street on Thursday morning. Photo: BELINDA SOOLE
BATTERED AND BRUISED: Dubbo resident Ilma Murphy, 87, has reported of being attacked by a dog in Queen Street on Thursday morning. Photo: BELINDA SOOLE

An 87-year-old grandmother was performing a good deed for a neighbour when a “ginger cattle dog” charged at her in Queen Street Dubbo on Thursday morning.

The experience has left Ilma Murphy battered and bruised, but certain that the “dog has to go”.

She reports seeing it harass others in the street, including a “postie” and a mother pushing a baby in a stroller. “It’s out of its yard everyday,” said the elderly woman now “terrified to go outside”.

Devastating dog attacks in NSW have exacerbated Mrs Murphy’s concern for others. “Imagine if it had been a child,” she said.

Despite the trauma, she is grateful not to have broken a bone. “I say I couldn’t win a train fare to the Gap, but I was lucky this time,” Mrs Murphy said.

The Queen Street resident told the Daily Liberal she didn’t see the dog when crossing it to get to a neighbour’s property. “It came from behind and went for the back of my heel,” Mrs Murphy said. “It must have put me off balance and down I went.” 

Mrs Murphy said two men working nearby came to her aid along with a neighbour who rushed outside barefoot. “Only for them, goodness knows what would have happened,” she said. “I was absolutely terrified. I started to shake and couldn’t stop.” 

Mrs Murphy, who understands the dog “went for one of the men” after attacking her, declined an offer to call an ambulance and was escorted back to her home by her neighbour. “My neighbour stayed with me for some time until I settled down,” she said.

On Thursday afternoon she was nursing a “shocking headache” and bruises to her hands and other parts of her body. A community nurse, who calls on the ailing woman daily, had provided support and comfort.

Mrs Murphy called Dubbo Regional Council after the incident, with a ranger later interviewing her. A council spokesman has told the Daily Liberal that it takes “all reports of dangerous dogs seriously”.

Office of Local Government data shows the number of reported dog attacks in Dubbo rose from 14 between  April 1 and June 30 of  2017 to 34 between July 1 and September 30 the same year.

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