Five-year-old suffers facial injuries after dog attack
Abbie Varrow was jumping up and down on a trampoline close to a fence at a friend's house when the dog leapt up from a neighbour's garden and seized her face in its jaws.
The attack lasted just seconds but it took surgeons two hours to close the wounds with 60 stitches. The nerves in her nose have been damaged.
Abbie's mother Alyson, 40, has said it was lucky Abbie was not killed.
"I dread to think what would have happened if the dog had got over the fence," she said.
The attack on March 27 happened while Abbie was playing with her friend Harry Chapman, who lives close to her home in Great Notley, Essex.
Alyson said: "We heard Abbie screaming and then someone banging on the front door.
"Under her left eye the bite had gone right through the flesh and we were amazed that she didn't lose her eye. There was blood pouring from it."
She added: "The first thing Abbie did at the hospital was ask for a mirror and when she looked she said, 'Oh, it's a mess, isn't it?'
"We just don't know what will happen now and how well her skin will heal but we are concerned about her nose. She keeps saying it feels funny."
Abbie was in Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford for two days recovering from her injuries. She is due to return next month.
The Alsatian's owner has been arrested on suspicion of owning a dangerous dog.
Essex police said the alsatian's owner has been arrested on suspicion of owning a dangerous dog.
Abbie's dad Tony, 39, a shop assistant said: "We don't blame the dog but we 110 per cent blame the owners.
"If they had been round to our house on their hands and knees apologising, then it would possibly make things better.
"But they have done nothing."