MIRROR Online: LONDON, England, By Sophie Watson – WARNING, GRAPHIC IMAGES: Mum Kelsea Morgan needed 15 stitches to fix the hole in her face after a friend’s rottweiler-pitbull cross savaged her in a vicious attack.

        A terrified mum has revealed the stomach churning moment she feared her pal’s dog was ‘pulling her face off’ as the giant rottweiler-pitbull cross sank its jaws into her cheek – leaving her mate to cough up compensation.

        Kelsea Morgan had been at her friend’s house in Swansea, Wales, when the pair heard an altercation break out on the street outside. As they went to investigate what was happening, the 33-year-old says her friend’s rottweiler pitbull mix began to get ‘wound up’ and started running in and out of the house.

        With the pooch ‘distressed’, Kelsea said she sat down next to the dog to try and soothe it and calm it down. But out of nowhere, she claims the dog ‘saw red’ and sunk its teeth into her face, not letting go for 20 seconds – leaving her terrified the beast was going to ‘pull her face off’.

        Graphic photos show the trainee solicitor’s face cut open with a gash in her nostril, leaving her with a three-inch hole in her cheek and a split septum. The mum-of-one had to undergo emergency surgery which resulted in 24 stitches to reconstruct her face and was told by the doctors that she would be scarred for life.

        Since the attack in September 2022, Kelsea says she won’t go out without makeup on and still gets angry when she looks at herself in the mirror. Kelsea, from Llanelli in South Wales, said: “We heard an altercation on the street and the dog ran out and was running back and forth in and out of the house and getting quite wound up.

        Kelsea Morgan feared her friend's dog was 'pulling her face off.'

        Kelsea Morgan feared her friend’s dog was ‘pulling her face off.’ Image: Kennedy News & Media

        “I think I made the mistake of trying to calm the dog down because he looks distressed. But he just saw red and turned. There was nothing I could say that made the dog attack me.

        “He latched onto my face and I thought it was going to pull my face off. I held onto the dog as much as I could to try and get him to release. He was probably only attached to my face for 10 to 20 seconds but time goes so slow when you’re in a panic.

        “There was so much blood that I couldn’t see. I was wiping the blood away and I kept checking my hands to see if any flesh had come off. On the left side of my face just below my cheek I had a three inch wound. I had to have 15 stitches in the hole in my cheek, six when I had my septum done and three in my nostril. My septum was split and was coming away so it had to be stitched so it would grow back to the shape it was meant to be.”

        According to NHS Digital, hospital admissions for dog bites have increased across the country in the past 10 years. There were 9,277 dog bites recorded in 2022-23, up by 57 percent from 6,317 in 2012-13. Other NHS Digital findings recorded in 2022-23 said 3,473 people needed some degree of reconstruction surgery in English hospitals due to dog bites. Data showed that 374 of these were in children aged between zero and four.

        A photo of Kelsea before the vicious attack.

        A photo of Kelsea before the vicious attack – Kennedy News & Media

        Following her one-and-a-half hour operation Kelsea says she was left unable to talk, laugh or eat for a week while her wounds began to heal. She said she was also left ‘ashamed’ of her scars and now even 18 months on from the attack doesn’t leave the house without makeup on.

        “I had to go in for emergency surgery and I was so frightened of what I would look like [afterwards]. The surgeon said he would make me look as good as possible. [After surgery], I felt terrible and I didn’t want to go home to my daughter as I didn’t want her to see my face.

        A giant rottweiler-pitbull cross sank its jaws into her cheek – Getty Images

        “I couldn’t talk, laugh, yawn or eat for at least a week after the operation. I was on really strong painkillers too which meant I couldn’t drive or work. I hid away in my house for a while. I didn’t want to see anyone for how my scars had left me.

        “I was ashamed of what I looked like and I couldn’t look at my mum without crying. I still think people are looking at me now [because of my injury] but the scar has gone white now so I can cover it. When the incident first happened, I used to have dreams and wake up in the night thinking my face wasn’t there. The medications were quite strong too so this could have played a part.

        “I still get quite paranoid and get angry sometimes when I look at myself in the mirror and think I’m not who I was before. I was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

        “I never used to wear a lot of makeup but now I don’t leave the house without it and tend to cover up the dent where the scar was. It’s a part of me now and I do have to accept it.”

        Kelsea was given £1,000 compensation for her injuries.

        Kelsea was given £1,000 compensation for her injuries.

          Following her attack, Kelsea reported the incident to South Wales Police and the rottweiler pitbull mix was subjected to a destruction order.

          The dog’s owner was then charged with being a person in charge of a dog dangerously out of control and causing injury. After pleading guilty to the offence, the individual was given a 12-month community order, six month tagged curfew and was also ordered to pay court costs and £1,000 in compensation to Kelsea for her injuries.

          Despite the dog being put down, Kelsea says the attack has left her ‘petrified’ of them and warns other owners about the natural animal instincts of canines.

          Kelsea said: “I’m petrified of dogs now. I just wouldn’t trust dogs, even the ones you have in your own house as they are wild animals and they have a natural instinct to attack. When I was younger we used to wind our pet dog up and it would give us a warning but with this breed of dog [the one that attacked me], they are just so strong.

          “When he had hold of me, I could not get him off me and this is why I thought he had bitten my face off. These dogs over the years have been trained to be protectors and have a natural instinct to attack and are the most likely [breed] to attack.”

          Kelsea, from Llanelli in South Wales, needed 15 stitches in her cheek.

          Kelsea, from Llanelli in South Wales, needed 15 stitches in her cheek. ( 

          Image: Kennedy News & Media)

          In a win for the Mirror’s Dangerous Dogs campaign, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced last year said the government was “urgently working to stop these attacks.” The Prime Minister made the announcement amid a spate of attacks by XL Bully dogs.

          A ban on XL Bully Dogs in England and Wales came into force on December 31 last year. Anyone who owns an XL Bully dog without a certificate of exemption will be breaking the law. The Mirror is continuing its campaign to overhaul the Dangerous Dogs Act as Brits are still being killed or seriously injured in dog attacks.

          Time for action on Danger Dogs

          The Mirror is calling for:

          ■ 1 The overhaul of the Dangerous Dogs Act. An urgent review of the law is needed and tougher penalties should be considered.

          ■ 2 Enforce the rules to stop the illegal and irresponsible breeding and selling of dogs.

          ■ 3 A public information campaign to promote the importance of responsible dog ownership and the need for training.

          Top Feature Photo: Kelsea Morgan has relived the horrifying dog attack for the first time – Kennedy News & Media