Newborn twins mauled to death by dog
Newborn twin girls were mauled to death after the family dog turned violent.
Police reports in Brazil described the tragic incident after a mother briefly left her premature babies to speak to a neighbour, which was when the animal attacked.
The twin girls, Anne and Analú, died on June 23, the day they were scheduled to be born by caesarean, having arrived a month early.
Shocked relatives said the dog, a Labrador and American foxhound cross, had been the family's pet for five years and was usually docile.
But since the arrival of the twins, the dog is believed to have become jealous after losing affection from his owners.
Heartbroken mother Elaine Novais, 29, raced to her bedroom where the 26-day-old children lay after she heard their cries.
She dragged the dog away to stop the attack but the dog had already managed to inflict critical damage to their abdomens.
A neighbour, a nursing assistant, administered first aid before they were rushed to hospital. Doctors confirmed that one of the twins had died instantly from her wounds while the other was gravely injured and suffered a cardiac arrest, with the medical team unable to save her.
The incident in Piripá, in the northeastern state of Bahia, has shocked the local community.
A family member who asked not to be named told local media that the dog was usually affectionate and gentle.
"We think that with the arrival of the twins, the animal no longer had the attention and affection of its owners that it had been used to," one member of the family, who didn't want to give their name to media, told local reporters.
"This may have caused some kind of jealousy and led what was normally a docile animal to attack the children."
The family have two dogs but the second one is not believed to have been involved in the attack.
For new mum Elaine and husband Regis, 32, the devastating events followed a desperate nine-year attempt to start a family.
Elaine had to be sedated after collapsing with shock at Maria Pedreira Barbosa Municipal Hospital.
Neighbour Maria de Jesus, speaking to FocusOn News, said: "This has devastated the parents.
"I pray that they don't fall into a depression but it will be difficult because the children were beautiful, really loved and desperately wanted."
Midwives involved with the family described Elaine as a doting mother who showed "care and responsibility" throughout her pregnancy.
The police have opened an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the twins' death.
It is unclear what triggered the dog's attack or what has happened to the dog following the incident.
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission
Originally published as Newborn twins mauled to death by dog