Fireman Mauled By Dog While Trying To Rescue A Cat

It’s the call a fireman’s wife dreads “Your husband has been injured at work”.

“You expect it to be fire or smoke or even a fall but not an aggressive attack by a pitbull.” said Merrill Fagan who’s husband Mark was savaged by dog yesterday while on duty.

Fireman Mark Fagan was responding to a call to rescue a cat on King Georges Road at Blakehurst, as he entered the back yard of the home the Staffy named “Cowboy” came straight for him latching onto his hand as he tried to protect himself.

Mark managed to drag his hand out of the dogs mouth but in the process caused severe injury that will require surgery today.

Photo: Steve Hart

“Cowboy” wasn’t done yet, he then went for Mark’s leg attacking his knee first before latching onto his foot for several minutes.

There was also a female dog and a litter of puppies also in the backyard.

It was lucky Mark’s brave colleagues risked their own safety and came to his rescue that helped get the dog off Mark or it may well have been much worse.

“Thank god for steel cap boots” said Merrill.

Photo: Steve Hart

Mark is in hospital awaiting surgery for a “severely mangled right hand with a very nasty open fracture at the base of his thumb. The biggest concern right now is the risk of infection”.

Mark has been a fireman for 31 years and has been in some tough situations including falling through a floor, but he said this was the 'worst' thing he had endured during his career.

Lyall who owns the dog was in tears as police took “Cowboy” away yesterday.

Mark will be off work for at  least three months to heal.

Tune into 10 News First at 5pm for our exclusive interview with Mark.