Search icon


20th Jan 2023

Inquest hears how dog mauled baby to death after dragging her from bed

Kat O'Connor

Baby Mia died in June 2021

The family of baby Mia O’Connell has spoken out about their heartache at an inquest into the three-month-old baby’s death.

Baby Mia was killed by her family’s dog on June 6, 2021.

The incident, which took place at their Waterford home, claimed the life of the baby girl. The family’s one-year-old dachshund-terrier crossbreed attacked Mia when she was asleep upstairs.

According to RTÉ, the dog snapped at baby Mia on the day she was brought home from hospital.

The court heard that on June 6, 2021, Mia was placed in a moses basket and settled down for the night.

A few hours later, Mia’s aunt went to check on the baby and found her niece lying on the floor. When she let out a huge scream, Mia’s mother ran up the stairs and saw blood on her daughter’s face and clothing.

The dog was covered in blood, with the court told that the scene was “disgusting.”

A post-mortem found that the baby died from traumatic brain injury but felt no pain as she would have to fallen into unconsciousness very quickly.

The rescue dog was put to sleep hours after the attack.

Speaking at the inquest, Cork City Coroner Philip Comyn said the dog never should’ve been left unattended.

He told the court that dogs are so unpredictable and extreme vigilance is required when they’re around babies.

Speaking after the inquest, one of Mia’s aunts said their family will never get over this loss.

Heidi O’Connell said; “The pain is unbearable. I think it will never go away. Our hearts are broken forever.

“We will never get her back. It is still like a nightmare. Full of smiles and full of giggles and she was taken away from us so abruptly and so tragically.”

“This dog was a small terrier. There were some concerns but you would never in a million years think that something like this would happen to you or your family.”

Mia’s tragic passing was ruled death by misadventure.

Related links: