A dog has attacked a six-year-old girl as she played on a sports field in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, leaving her needing surgery for a serious arm injury, police said.
The girl had asked to stroke the Japanese Akita when it set upon her, inflicting bite wounds that penetrated two-thirds of the way into her arm, her mother said.
The child, who is now recovering at home, also needed six stitches to a wound on the chin at the Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham.
Her mother, who did not want to be named, said: "The owner had the dog on the lead and he walked towards where the children were playing."
She added: "I think it's devastating, obviously, for anything like this to happen to your daughter, but he shouldn't have been there in the first place with such a huge dog."
Leicestershire Police have appealed for witnesses to the attack, which happened at around 11.30am on Sunday at King Edward School in Burton Road, during a rugby match.
A 19-year-old man has been reported for offences under the Dangerous Dogs Act.
The dog alleged to have been involved in the attack has been recovered by police pending the completion of the investigation and any subsequent court proceedings.
Copyright © Press Association 2009
Katrina Elsey from law firm Irwin Mitchell said: "This case demonstrates the need for dogs to be kept under control at all times. Owners are liable for negligent harm caused by their dogs. Even if a dog is on a lead and attacks, the owner or person in control of the dog at the time can still be found to be negligent.
"We represent many people who have been attacked by dogs and the injuries inflicted can be serious and sometimes fatal."