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Girl died as a result of dog attack, coroner rules

A four-year-old girl died when she was mauled to death at home in Leicestershire by the family's pet bulldog, a coroner has recorded in a narrative verdict.

The coroner said he would make recommendations to avoid similar deaths in future, drawing attention to the lack of national standards for rehoming dogs in kennels.

The Aylestone bulldog-type family pet killed Lexi Branson after attacking her in the lounge of their two-bedroom flat in November 2013.

Lexi's mother told the inquest at Rutland and North Leicestershire Coroner's Court that the animal had gone straight for the four-year-old's throat.

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Lexi Branson's mother 'not warned over bulldog'

Willow Tree Rehoming Centre in Barrow upon Soar, Leicestershire Credit: PA Wire

By Ben Chapman, ITV News Correspondent

The mother of a four-year-old girl mauled to death by the family bulldog was not told the animal was aggressive by the rehoming centre, an inquest has heard.

Jodi Hudson told the hearing an advert at the Willow Tree Rehoming Centre in Barrow upon Soar, Leicestershire, said the Aylestone bulldog was not suitable to be around young children but staff told her that was due to its size rather than because it was aggressive.

She said no one from the centre visited her home in Mountsorrell, Leicestershire, before she collected the dog.

But Ms Hudson told the inquest there was "no sign of aggression" from the animal in the weeks leading up to the attack.

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