The first picture of a three-year-old boy who was mauled to death by a pet dog in a horrifying attack in an Essex town has been released.2dogDexter Neal was airlifted to hospital but tragically died from his injuries. Shocked neighbours said they could hear “agonising screams for a good five minutes” coming from inside the house before the blood-soaked animal, an American Bulldog, emerged.

Chillingly, the dog was spotted sitting calmly outside the home just moments after the attack, with blood all over its paws and mouth. Essex Police said the breed has yet to be established, but neighbours reported it being a big pitbull-type dog with short white hair.

Scott Howell, 19, who called the police after realising what had happened, said: “They have only had the dog about a week … I saw the man dragging the dog out. It’s face was covered in blood. That is when I thought ‘I need to call the police’. As I was describing what was happening to the police I saw a woman come out of the house and she was holding a very bloody child in her arms.”1dogNeighbours saw paramedics desperately trying to resuscitate the youngster at the scene. The air ambulance attended but the boy could not be saved. A 29-year-old woman was arrested for allowing a dog to be dangerously out of control.