A MAN has died three days after a “giant teddy bear” dog bit his arm – passing on deadly infection.
Pauline Day, 62, said her family had been torn apart by the tragedy that killed her brother and left her husband with multiple amputations.
Pauline’s brother, Barry Harris, 46, purchased the Japanese Akita – named Ted – for £1500, described as a ‘giant teddy bear’.
But in July, the dog snapped at Barry’s arm – leaving him with a badly infected wound that developed for three days before causing cardiac arrest.
One month later, on the day of Barry’s funeral, Pauline’s husband Mark, 61, was walking the dog when he was bitten by Ted.
Mark was hospitalised shortly after, had all left-hand fingers amputated, and is planning to have both legs amputated next week due to sepsis caused by Ted’s toxic bite.
The family said they had no idea that Ted was a silent killer with deadly bacteria crawling inside his mouth.
Pauline, from Colchester, Essex, said: “They weren’t even attacked. Ted literally just broke the skin on my husband and my brother.”
She said: “It was the softest dog but it had food issues. Whenever it was near food it was so aggressive.
“We think it was mistreated as a puppy.”
Barry bought Ted through a private Facebook seller in a London flat in May this year for some “good company” following a break-up.
After less than six weeks together – Ted bit Barry as he was trying to remove an animal bone from his mouth and his arm soon swelled up and he fell ill with cold sweats and headaches.
A month later, Mark described his legs feeling “like blocks of ice” following the bite but put it down to a hangover.
He was rushed to hospital 3 days later with a 39C temperature before he went into cardiac arrest and suffered multiple organ failures.
WHAT IS SEPSIS?
Sepsis is life-threatening and is the primary cause of death from infection around the world.
Sepsis is the body’s extreme reaction to infection that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death.
It’s the primary cause of death from infection around the world – that’s more than bowel, breast and prostate cancer combined.
The condition is not contagious and cannot be passes from person to person.
When a person suffers a minor cut, the surrounding tissue will become red, swollen, and warm to touch – which is the body’s immune response to kill off the bacteria that cause infection.
When sepsis happens, this system goes into overdrive.
– Loss of appetite
– Fever and chills
– Difficult or rapid breathing
– Rapid heart rate
– Low blood pressure
– Low urine output
If you suspect you, or a loved one, are suffering sepsis it must be treated as a medical emergency and you should call 999 immediately.
Pauline said: “It’s like something out of a nightmare. You just don’t believe this has happened.
“The shock of my brother was one thing and then my husband. It’s just surreal.”
Doctors told Pauline that Mark’s condition was “100 per cent” due to a bacterial infection from a dog.
Pauline had Ted put down on the same day.
Afterward, Pauline checked the paperwork that Ted’s previous owner gave to Barry and found that he had no vaccination history, reporting that they gave Barry “a false history”