1. ITV Report

'I thought I could be dead but I tried to be strong' - boy attacked by dogs relives his trauma

Sorry, this content isn't available on your device.

A mother is calling for tougher penalties for dog owners after her son was mauled by two dogs as he walked home from the park.

Maaza Hafiz says her 11-year-old son Abdul owes his life to his neighbours who wrestled the dogs to the floor. Abdul had to undergo hours of surgery and will be scarred for life.

Abdul Khaled says he's lucky to be alive.

He and his brother had been walking home from the park in Frenchay near Bristol last week when his nightmare began.

We heard footsteps so we looked behind us and there was what I thought was a bulldog I think. We tried to run and I tripped and then I fell unconscious when I tripped so I didn't really feel anything.

When I woke up I was in my mum's close close friend's lap. My arm was really hurting so I asked her if my arm was gone.

She was asking my brother to call the ambulance and stuff. At that point I thought that I could be dead if the ambulance didn't come in time but I tried to be strong.

– Abdul Khaled
Maaze Hafiz is calling for tougher penalties for dog owners after her son was attacked. Credit: ITV West Country

Abdul had to undergo reconstructive surgery and will be scarred for life. But his mother, who was at work at the time, says his injuries would be much worse if not for the actions of her neighbours.

Tayba Limon and her husband rushed to the rescue after hearing Abdul's screams. As her husband prized the dogs away from Abdul's body, Tayba did what she could to stem the bleeding.

I had my hands on his wounds, trying to stop the blood. It's horrifying, very traumatising. Seeing and witnessing something like that, it's really hard to get over something like that. Especially knowing that it happened on our road.

It's scary thinking that it could have happened to anyone's child. I'm just happy that he's ok. He's recovering and he's happy and he's ok. It's going to take him a while to get over it but we'll be there for him.

– Tayba Limon, Neighbour
Abdul's injuries will heal but he's also deeply scarred emotionally. Credit: ITV West Country

But while his injuries heal, Abdul's mental scars will take far longer to recover from. He wakes up crying in the night and says he doesn't like going out any more: "I like to stay near my house now, I wouldn't go around the streets now any more."

Police say a dog has been seized and a man was voluntarily interviewed but that their enquiries are ongoing. Maaza Hafiz says the attack has had an effect on the whole community and children are being kept indoors. She wants to see tougher penalties for the owners of dogs who attack.

We're going to get through this but something should be done. I don't want to see a mum or a family being in the same situation I've faced. It's just you feel unsafe, that feeling I am just carrying with me all the time now.

– Maaza Hafiz, Abdul's mother

Maaza says she doesn't know when her family will feel safe again but says something needs to change to stop any other family suffering in the same way.