Woman’s nose ripped off by pet dog scared of her teeth whitening

‘I didn’t like dogs before, and then I started dating someone who is a dog person, and had one, and this dog changed my life. I now like dogs,’ Olivia Quast says

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
Tuesday 07 March 2023 15:54 GMT
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A Connecticut woman had her nose ripped off by her boyfriend’s dog after it was seemingly “startled by her teeth whitening”.

Olivia Quast, 30, said she didn’t like dogs until she moved in with her boyfriend Graeme Stasyshyn, 44, and his rescue dog Bentley, a six-year-old dog Mr Stasyshyn had for four years. Ms Quast said Bentley was the first dog she “ever loved,” according to Kennedy News and Media.

But when she bent down to feed him on 3 February, he dug his teeth into her nose.

Ms Quast, an artist, touched her face and was horrified when she found that her nose “wasn’t there”. Bentley attacked her two more times before she managed to kick him off, leaving her with a “mangled arm”.

She raced to the restroom where she called her family who called an ambulance and she was soon taken to Hartford Hospital in Connecticut.

Ms Quast suffers from Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS), which is a rare connective tissue disorder. Possible symptoms include joint hypermobility, and stretchy and fragile skin, which means that those with EDS, a condition which is typically inherited, may bruise easily.

(Kennedy News & Media)

At the hospital, Ms Quast’s nose, her septum, and cartilage were found to have been torn off, but the bridge of her nose and the outside of her nostrils were intact.

Ms Quast said she believes that Bentley, a pointer, pitbull, and bulldog mix, could have been spooked by the UV light from her teeth-whitening mouth guard.

The couple made the hard decision to put Bentley down following the attack.

“I had no idea he was going to lunge at me, it was a total shock,” she said, according to Kennedy News and Media. “We didn’t have a poor relationship, the night before he snuggled in my bed [and] I tucked him into all my blankets.”

(Kennedy News & Media)

“The only thing that made sense was that this UV light [from the mouth guard] triggered something in his brain,” she added. “He lunged, and he got my nose first, I was in shock and disbelief.”

“I just stared at him. It never dawned on me that he was going to keep attacking me, because why would he?” she pondered. “I put my hand on my nose and he lunged at my arm twice more.”

“I thought, ‘I’m not going to play tug of war with a creature whose favourite game is tug of war - with my arm’. So I just let him bite me,” she said. “I was actively going into shock. I was shaky, I was cold [and] I called my mom.”

“I was in pure agony. [I was saying] ‘help me mom, help me, he took my nose. My fingers are going numb, I can’t feel my fingers, I’m getting cold’. It was terrifying,” she recalled. “I went to the bathroom and I looked in the mirror.”

“I stayed standing, but I felt my entire being drop to the floor, the room spun, it’s like everything was in hyper-focus and spinning and it was pure agony,” she added about the ordeal. “I yelled, and not a panicky yell, like a deep, earthy, guttural scream.”

Ms Quast has since had surgery on her arm and is waiting for her facial wound to heal before having reconstructive surgery.

Plastic surgeons are set to use cartilage from her ear and skin from her forehead to repair her nose.

Ms Quast has two plates, eight screws, and two pins in her arm. The fractures will need about eight months to heal.

The ligament and nerve damage in her hand will need about a year to recover.

“I’m a cat person, this is the only dog I’ve ever loved,” she said. “I didn’t like dogs before, and then I started dating someone who is a dog person, and had one, and this dog changed my life. I now like dogs.”

“I’m so grateful that people can help me, [and that] I’m alive,” she added.

A GoFundMe fundraiser has gathered more than $66,000 out of a $100,000 goal as of Tuesday morning.

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