UK & World News
Fox Bites Off Baby's Finger In Cot Attack
A fox dragged a one-month-old baby from his cot and mauled his hand, biting off one finger, it has been reported.
The boy was left seriously injured after the animal crept into his bedroom in Bromley, southeast London.
His mother was alerted by his screaming and rushed into his room to see his hand in the animal's mouth, the Mail On Sunday reported.
After a short struggle, the mother managed to free him, but by then his finger had been ripped off.
Plastic surgeons were able to reattach the boy's finger and he is said to be recovering well at home.
The animal had got into the family home through an open backdoor.
Neighbour Paula Wellington told Sky News: "I was at work when it happened but heard about it when I got back. The ambulance was still here and then police forensics arrived.
"I've seen foxes around here before but I've never heard anything like this. I saw the mother a couple of days ago and she told me the fox had got into the house and grabbed the baby.
"She was fighting with it, trying to pull it away from the baby. She said it lasted a couple of minutes and she had to wrestle the fox off the baby.
"The fox had the baby she said and she was really shaken by it. It's really scared everyone and the family have now moved out."
Another neighbour, Khadine Peters, said: "I was on the school run but when I got back I heard people screaming that a fox had attacked the baby. I think it's really terrible. You see them around here all the time.
"I look out of my window and often see a big fox sitting on the grass in the front garden. Something should be done about it but nothing has, no one from the council has been around."
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "We were called at 1638 on February 6 by staff at St Thomas's Hospital to reports a baby boy who had been admitted to hospital after being attacked by a fox.
"Police attended to find a four-week-old baby with a hand injury. The baby was admitted to hospital after the attack at its home address in Bromley."
London Mayor Boris Johnson said more needs to be done to deal with the problem of urban foxes.
"Thankfully this sort of attack, though terrible, is rare, but we must do more to tackle the growing problem of urban foxes," he said.
"They may appear cuddly and romantic but foxes are a pest and a menace, particularly in our cities."
A spokesperson from Lewisham Council, the local authority that covers the area, said: "Although rare, fox attacks can be devastating as this tragic case shows and our thoughts go out to the family at this difficult time."
The spokesperson advised residents to make their homes and back gardens "less attractive to foxes" by using repellents and "making sure that waste food is always disposed of in secure, lidded bins and containers".
An RSPCA spokeswoman said the only reason a fox would attack is due to fear.
"It's extremely unusual for foxes to attack young children or anyone," she said.
"It's not typical fox behaviour at all. Foxes will come closer to a house if there are food sources.
"Then they can become quite bold, but they usually do back off and run away when there's people around."
In June 2010, twin baby sisters Lola and Isabella Koupparis were attacked by a fox while sleeping in their cots in east London.
Isabella was found with deep cuts to her arm and Lola's face was covered in blood. Both underwent surgery at the Royal London Hospital.
The issue of foxes attacking humans has divided the public, with many sceptics questioning recent cases amid fears of a backlash against urban foxes.
In April last year, wildlife presenter Chris Packham said he simply did not believe reports of people getting attacked by the animals.
The broadcaster said there was no proof foxes attack dogs and cats and would only do so except in "exceptional circumstances".
what do you think?
Poor little dab, hope he is going to be ok. Are foxes getting braver.
As we lose the countryside they are becoming more common in urban areas and have adapted to city life quite remarkably and live off a plentiful supply of human waste.so yes they are braver.having said that the country fox is a far more timid and shy creature.
No running out of natural habitat and getting desperate
People think their helping these animals by feeding them but im afraid it comes as a double edged sword.its got be said however incidents like this is virtually unheard of.at the end of the day they are wild meaning wild.
Unheard of, and yet there was another case of a fox finding its way into a child's bedroom in London a couple of years ago. I'm afraid it's becoming more and more common, especally if people keep treating them like cats by feeding them.
there were no attacks before the wheelie bins were invented...they are desperate for food.
How does a fox drag a baby from a cot - lift him out first? There's rails at side to stop baby climbing out not saying it didn't happen but think details are incorrect
Could've been a Moses basket...
At only 4 weeks of age it probably was a moses basket.
dragged it out. theyl tear lambs and.other small animals to.bits..
I'm with Chris Packham on this one, I don't believe a fox would attack a human, I would be quite interested though to find out if in both cases they had a small dog.
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There all hiding in the woodlands with their cameras to make sure the hunters don't hurt these lovely cuddly furry animals.
perhaps this will remind people what foxes are actually like, not 'all red and cute'. They are wild animals which is why they have to be controlled (NOT necessarily hunted) sometimes on farms
Richard But only in towns as the do gooders would have us believe in the country they frolic in fields
Windows Live User
Some people Huh Take a horse to water but you cant make it drink. It's a wild animal of course it will take its chance, and what is it about a small baby that will frighten it off?
"It's not typical fox behaviour at all. Foxes will come closer to a house if there are food sources." That says it all really people are leaving their rubbish exposed or they are leaving food out for the foxes which is madness.Tragic thing to happen and i hope the little one makes a full recovery. But i would also like to know why a one month old was doing in a Cot when they should be in a carry"moses"basket till at least six months old(depending on size of child), where were the parents and why would you have the door open at night at this time of year? its too damn cold
fiqure of speech i expect. they.l kill anything, go and see what they do to new born lambs and chickens. city folk are soft.
Really?? My daughter was in a standard cot from birth due to the simple fact that she did not sleep well in the Moses basket. Is that such a big deal?! She was placed 'feet to foot' which is perfectly safe for a newborn! Perhaps the family had been cooking so needed the door open. Maybe a tumble dryer was on so the door was allowing air through.
Well said Nat. My third child was huge, and went into a cot very early... maybe about 4 weeks? Babies don't always follow guidelines!
whats a backdoor doing open in the middle of winter anyway with a young baby in the house ???
.....exactly what I was thinking!
Foxes not the problem people are cull foxes then your have a problem with rats and pigeons and mice
sorry but this story just doesn't ring true to me. i might be cynicle, but i suspect this is just fearmonfering and an excuse to kill off a lot of innocent foxes.
Thought that too...
Windows Live User
The broadcaster, who gave his views on the back of a Channel 4 programme Foxes Live: Wild In The City, said there was no proof that the creatures attack dogs and cats except in "exceptional circumstances". bit of a contradiction Chris
ban wheelie bins !
Ban foxes and treat them like the vermin they are.
You don't like animals twins? I'm not to keen on a lot of the human variety that murder, rape etc!
I dont like urban foxes, and the human variety you speak of we tend to put out of harms way. (some of the time)
Though this is terrible for the poor baby and his family any sudden knee jerk to cull or iradicate from the cities would be shockingly hypocritical. What if someone got stabbed or beaten up by a teenager.would THEY then be culled?no.if its a known menace,no matter how rare,if you take appropriate precautions they'll be nothing to fear
Foxes are in the same legal category as rats and pigeons, they are vermin. We need to control their numbers.
So are a lot of those upright on two legs!
Which statute classifies certain animals as vermin? I want to look it up, maybe otters and ospreys are there too?
Few years ago, we were building a new fence, at the time had 2 huge rabbits, few bantams, and a pet chicken I called " egg" helped her hatch, anyway, had makeshift wire around enclosure, wasn't enough, a fox got in and killed them all, naturally I was very upset, but it was my fault, I didn't protect them enough, lessons were learnt. Take away an animals natural habitat, and it's obvious it will do anything to survive, we live on a huge housing estate, and foxes roam, bit by bit, their land is being built on, what are they to do? Arrogance of man thinking they are the only ones that count never ceases to amaze me!
Tracy J Evans
I have to say Chris Packham is on another planet about foxes, i have seen them pack hunt local cats and dogs in the field behind us, and its not a one off either!
have you been watching fantastic mr fox?
Were the foxes wearing burberry baseball caps?
Be seagulls next
No we're doing a good job of killing our seabirds off as it is By over fishing
Great idea Boris. Bring back fox hunting in a new format.....urban fox hunting. I can see it now rows of hounds and horses charging through city centres....horses leaping over cars and the sound of the huntsmans horn blaring out.....cant wait!,,,,
Thank heavens Orange put a picture of a fox with this news item, it's really brought the story to life.
Thought it was strange the French windows were open in Feb. This happened July 2002, why is it being reported now as news?
A terrible thing to happen this, but there is obviously something very fishy about this story!