A thankful mum has heaped praise on charity helicopter paramedics whose quick actions helped her baby son return home in time for his first Christmas after he was mauled by one of the family’s dogs.
As reported in the Press and Journal, Morven Davidson turned her back on her two-month-old son for only “a matter of seconds”, but it was enough time for him to suffer potentially fatal injuries.
The dog leaped on to James’ pushchair and inflicted unthinkable injuries, damaging his airway, puncturing an artery and nearly removing his ear from his head.
Within the hour, however, Scotland’s Charity Air Ambulance had airlifted son James and his mother to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary for treatment at the major trauma centre.
And, smiling with his mother at their home, James has since made an incredible recovery from the incident.
Mrs Davidson said: “It was so instantly reassuring having the air ambulance team here to help him.
“They are absolute life-savers. It is as simple as that. Without them, rural communities would be scuppered.
“It would have been horrendous sitting with James in the back of the ambulance going to Aberdeen.
“He was slipping in and out of consciousness and we don’t know how the extra time needed to get to treatment would have left him.
“And with part of his ear being severed from his head, doctors might not have been able to save it.”
Mrs Davidson, 27, works as a shepherd in Invermark in Glen Esk, while 28-year-old husband Derek is a gamekeeper on another nearby estate.
By road, the journey to ARI would have taken more than an hour. By air, the SCAA team had James there in 15 minutes.
James spent nine days in hospital, undergoing plastic surgery and other procedures by ear, nose and throat specialist surgeons.
It was Patterdale terrier Rascal, one of the families’ 10 dogs, that had turned on the baby boy after a walk around the estate. The dog, nearly five years old, has since been put down.
SCAA lead paramedic John Pritchard who was one of those who attended said: “It is great to hear the wee one got home for his first Christmas with his family.”