Neighbours in a Sunderland street where a three-week-old baby died after being bitten by a dog today spoke of their horror at the tragedy.
Police were called to an address in Falkland Road, Ford Estate, at 4.15am this morning.
The baby, who has not yet been named, was taken to hospital, but died later.
The dog, a small terrier, has been taken away and is likely to be destroyed.
Paul Tweddle, 50, who lives over the road, said: “You can’t imagine the horror. How on earth does a family come back from something like this?
“I just saw the dad the other day and said congratulations on the birth, and he was just beaming with pride.”
His wife Brenda said: “We are devastated for them. I just burst into tears when I heard from a neighbour.
“They are such a loving, happy family.”
Social media sites were also inundated with condolences for the baby’s parents, who are believed to have two other children, plus another from a previous relationship.
Pammie40 wrote on the Echo’s website: “I’m a dear friend of the family and it’s absolutely devastating news. It was a tragic accident. We are all devastated. R.I.P little angel boy.”
Alderelana added: “This is absolutely devastating news. I send my deepest condolences to the family concerned. Sleep tight baby boy. R.I.P x”
Rachel Harrison wrote on Facebook: “That’s awful and just shows it can happen with any breed of dog, not just the apparently ‘dangerous’ ones.”
Andy Atkinson said: “As a father of two young girls this breaks my heart, RIP little fella.”
Catherine Hillan added: “R.I.P little man. My heart’s breaking for his mam and dad and his brothers and sister. Can’t begin to imagine what they are all going through right now xxx.”