A 55-year-old woman has been mauled by a dog at Cronulla Mall in Sydney's Sutherland Shire.
Witnesses say the woman was trying to protect her own pet when she was bitten by the off-leash dog, and her screams were "absolutely blood curdling".
A NSW Ambulance spokesman told NCA NewsWire that paramedics were called just before noon, and two ambulance crews rushed to the scene.
"Paramedics treated a 55-year-old woman for serious hand injuries and transported her to Sydney Hospital," he said.
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The hospital, about a 30km drive from where the attack took place, has a specialist hand unit.
One witness told NCA NewsWire the dog had initially attacked the woman's dog, and she was "screaming and trying to save it" before she was attacked herself.
"People came from everywhere, so I didn't see much more until someone emerged with her little dog covered in blood," the local woman said.
"Then (I saw) the owner with the (dog) now on a lead as someone got one from the Dollar Stretchers shop.
"Then I saw the lady who was attacked. Her hand was really messed up.
"There was heaps of blood and some misshapen fingers … I don't know if they'll be able to save them all."
The woman's dog was "covered in blood" and has been taken to a local vet.