Aaron Bunch Journalist with Australian Associated Press | Collection of published work | + 61 484 008 119 | abunch@aap.com.au

Aaron Bunch
Dad snatches toddler son from dingo’s jaws

A father has rescued his toddler son from a dingo that was dragging him off into the bush on Fraser Island in Queensland.

April 19, 2019

A toddler is in hospital with a fractured skull and cuts to his head and neck after a dingo dragged him from his bed on Queensland’s Fraser Island.

The boy’s family were camping in a remote area of the island in the state’s southeast on Thursday night when two dingoes entered their campervan as they slept.

Paramedic Ben Du Toit said one of the dingoes bit the toddler’s neck and began dragging him away into the bush.

“The parents awoke with the toddler crying and heard the crying getting further away from the campervan,” Mr Du Toit said.

The boy’s father ran outside to fight off the dingoes, and rescued his son from one of the animal’s jaws.

Paramedics treated the boy for two deep cuts on his neck near the back of his head, and some minor cuts on his head, before being flown to Hervey Bay Hospital about 3am on Friday.

He was also found to be suffering a fractured skull and about 8am the boy was transferred to Queensland’s Children’s Hospital in Brisbane.

He remains there in a stable condition.

The Environment Department brought in extra rangers to investigate the attack and patrol the island.

Principal Ranger Daniel Clifton said dingo specialists were also attempting to identify the animals.

“We’re (also) out there briefing campers … making sure they’re aware of the incident,” he told reporters.

Mr Clifton said when dingoes interact closely with people and have access to food, their behaviour changes.

“That does result in increased aggression and dingo activity,” he said.

Euthanasia of the responsible animals hasn’t been ruled out.

“(The decision) is taken with all the information gathered together, and in consultation with the Butchulla traditional owners,” he said.

Mr Clifton said although dingo attacks on Fraser Island were uncommon, people should remain aware.

“Don’t approach dingoes, don’t feed dingoes, keep your children really close, especially if you’re not in a fenced area,” he said.

This was the third dingo attack on Fraser Island this year.

In February, a nine-year-old boy and his mother were admitted to hospital after a dingo pack chased them down and mauled them.

It followed a January attack on a six-year-old boy who was bitten on the legs while camping with his family in the same area as the toddler attacked on Friday.

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