More than 200 people have been admitted to hospital after dog attacks in South Yorkshire.
Figures reveal that between March 2014 and February, 228 people were admitted to the region’s hospital after being bitten or struck by a dog.
A total of 93 people were admitted to hospital in Sheffield – which is equivalent to 16 bites per 100,000 residents.
In Rotherham, 33 people were admitted, while 51 people were admitted to hospital in both Doncaster and Barnsley.
Across South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw, there was a further 82 people admitted for injuries caused by other mammals including farm animals, horses, foxes and cats.
Melvin Meanley, aged 59, from Mexborough, spent several days in hospital after a savage dog attack left him with two broken ribs, a broken right arm and multiple cuts and bruises in January.
Retired Sam Davis, 59, of Stonecliffe Walk, Doncaster suffered cuts and bruises when he was attacked by two dogs in Denaby. His lhasa apso dog Spike was killed in the attack.
Heath and Social Care Information Centre statistics, reveal there were 7,227 dogs attacks across the country between March 2014 and February, up from 4,110 in the corresponding period 10 years ago – a 76 per cent rise.
The most affected age group was children aged under nine, with 1,159 admitted to hospital.
The most common injuries were wounds to wrists and hands, followed by head injuries.
Trevor Cooper, Dogs Trust’s law specialist, said: “It is especially worrying to learn that the number of hospital admissions for dog related injuries is highest among the 0-9 age group.
“Dogs Trust remains frustrated that legislation focusing on issues around dangerous dogs and dog attacks remains ineffective at preventing these incidents happening in the first place.
“It is the responsibility of dog owners to ensure their dogs are properly trained and socialised and Dogs Trust advises that young children should never be left alone with a dog.”
At least 21 people, including 13 children, have died in England and Wales in the past 10 years from dog attacks.
The Government has introduced tougher penalties for dog owners whose animals are out of control with the maximum sentence for a fatal attack 14 years.
Under the Dangerous Dogs Act, owners can be jailed for five years if their dog causes injury.