Pets

Toddler Dies after Dog Attack at NSW Motel

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A family is left without their little boy after a horrific dog attack at a motel in Cowra, New South Wales. The little boy, Jyedon Pollard, aged just 2, was attacked on Tuesday morning by two dogs – a rottweiler and a cattle dog.

He later died in the hospital due to his injuries.

What happened

Jyedon Pollard was staying at the Country Gardens Motel with his mother and his two siblings, waiting for permanent accommodation. The hotel isn’t described as pet-friendly but the two dogs were kept in an enclosure at the rear of the motel.

dog attack Cowra NSW

While the specific details surrounding the dog attack remain unknown at this stage, it is alleged that somehow, Jyedon got into the enclosure. Allegedly his two older sisters witnessed the attack. It’s unclear if both the dog attack involved both the dogs or just one.

A witness told 9 News:

“I heard a bit of screaming and when the screaming got louder, I saw the kids screaming, I looked out the window across the road and I saw some guy carrying a little kid who was absolutely screaming and people were panicked.”

The man who discovered Jyedon was the owner of the NSW motel Matt McIIIhatton.

He freed the injured toddler, who suffered serious injuries to the neck and the face and then rendered first aid. The motel owner then took Jyedon and his mother to the Cowra Hospital.

Toddler dies from his injuries 

Jyedon was then flown to Westmead Hospital in Sydney in a critical condition. He sadly died after arriving.

Chifley police superintendent Bob Noble told media on Tuesday,

“It would be a horrific situation to be confronted by but he [Matt] acted very bravely and very concisely. Everyone is devastated, when a child so young dies in such terrible fashion, it’s upsetting to a lot of people.”

When asked for a statement, Matt was clearly devastated before managing, “Sorry … It’s all too much.”

What happened to the dogs?

The two dogs have been seized by the local council and it is unknown what will happen to them at this stage. However, according to The Daily Telegraph, the dogs are owned by hotel staff and had always been friendly towards children.

mum central
Jyedon and his mum. Source: Facebook

Our hearts go out to Jyedon’s family as they come to terms with this terrible loss. Tributes are being posted to Takisha Pollard, Jyedon’s mum, on social media.

The distraught mum described Jyedon as “the most sweet little boy”.

One family member wrote: “I know you only [had] two years to live, but you’re gonna spend the rest of your life in heaven. [The] family [will] miss you so much, and I will miss you more. Rest in peace bubba love you so much.”


Be dog aware

We don’t share these stories to scare but to help families be aware that things like this can happen. We often hear stories about rogue dogs who do attack and, as hard as they are to read, we need to remember that these things do happen.

The Royal Children’s Hospital has produced a resource kit to help promote dog bite prevention. This is what they recommend:

  • Supervision. Always: A baby or young child should never, ever be left alone with a dog. If constant supervision isn’t possible, the best idea is to separate dog and child into different areas of the house/yard to minimise risk.
  • The ‘gentle’ rule: Teaching kids to be gentle from a young age helps them to establish the right kind of contact with their puppy pal.
  • Establish no-go zone: When a dog is eating or sleeping, it’s likely that it won’t want to be disturbed. Teach children from a young age to leave the family pet alone at these times.
  • Understand dog body language: A dog should be avoided and left alone if it growls, backs away, lifts its lips, stares at you or raises the hair on its back.
  • Permission: Whether the dog is well known to your child or not, always get permission from both you and the dog owner first.

How to handle an unknown dog

If approached, even by a dog that seems friendly, children should stand still like a statue with their arms by their sides and hands in a fist or hands tucked into their armpits, avoid making eye contact and importantly, not scream or panic.

Most dogs will lose interest very quickly. If the dog remains interested or knocks your child over, teach children to curl into a ball, stay quiet and wait it out. Dogs are more likely to be attracted to loud noise and lots of movement so doing the opposite often causes them to get bored and run away.

The most important things to remember are supervision, prevention and respect for our canine pals.

For more information on dogs and kids, visit Royal Children’s Hospital. You can also check out our expert tips for introducing a dog to the family.

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Avatar of Jenna Galley

Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe. When the mum-of-three is not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach, bouncing her baby to sleep or nagging her older kids to put on their pants.

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