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August 5, 2009

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Pig hunting dogs attack woman in New Zealand

A NEW Zealand woman jogger "looked like a blob of blood" from multiple bite wounds after eight pig hunting dogs attacked her as she ran past a rural property on North Island, her husband said yesterday.

Margit Christensen, 36, suffered scores of bites to her scalp, arms and legs before the dogs ran off. Rescue services flew the woman to Waikato Hospital by helicopter where she had nine hours of surgery overnight on Monday, emergency specialist Dr John Bonning said.

"There were serious injuries pretty much all over her body," said Sergeant Jason Shailer of Te Awamutu police in central North Island.

Husband Sven Christensen said a friend was cycling nearby when she heard the mother of two screaming as three dogs attacked her.

"She was screaming with three dogs on her, trying to kick them off when another five or so dogs came flying across and she fell to the ground," he told National Radio yesterday.

The friend alerted a neighbor and called Christensen, who got to the scene before medical help arrived.

"By the time I got there the dogs were off ... Margit was basically just sitting, she looked like a big blob of blood on the side of the road," he said.

The dogs' owner helped drive the pack off, Christensen said.

"She kept whacking them with sticks and they kept trying to come back and come back, and then she managed get them off," he said.

Margit Christensen told Bonning that she curled into fetal position to protect herself during the attack - a move that saved her life.

The woman was in a stable condition after extensive surgery, but Bonning said she faces many skin graft operations.

Shailer said the dogs had been destroyed after their owner signed a destruction order. A 29-year-old woman had been arrested and faces eight charges of owning a dog that caused injury.


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