An elderly couple is now in a stable condition after goanna attacked them in north Queensland on Thursday.
The 72-year-old man underwent surgery for arm and leg injuries, according to Queensland Ambulance Service Senior Operations Supervisor Shane Tucker.
Meanwhile, his wife sustained leg injuries and was treated at the Proserpine Hospital.
CQ Rescue, a rescue service, said, “He was breaking up an attack on his dog – he was rescuing his dog.”
“He has had quite significant injuries to his arm and leg and has had some blood loss,” CQ Rescue added.
The incident took place at Flametree, near Airlie Beach when the couple walked down their dog on Thursday afternoon.
Their dog, a Jack Russell named Lily, survived after being seriously injured by a goanna.
The attack was “a horrific and freak ordeal”, described the rescue service.
On the other hand, the injured woman described her dog’s survival as “the best news I’ve heard all day”.
Tucker told the goanna attack was “definitely out of the ordinary.”
The man was lucky to be in stable condition, added Tucker.
“Due to the claws of the goanna, I would imagine it would have the potential for significant, even life-threatening injuries,” informed Tucker.
“The reptile suddenly turned on them, latching onto the man’s right arm and leg as well as biting the woman’s leg,” Mr Tucker narrated.
Mainly from scratches, the man suffered significant blood loss, Tucker explained.
“The man suffered a very serious laceration and possible fracture of his right forearm as well as severe bleeding from his leg wound.”
Meanwhile, a reptile keeper at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary said that goannas are lace monitors, who have very sharp claws and teeth.
It could grow to about 2 metres in length and weigh about 3 to 4 kilograms, added keeper Dave Ryan.
Giving a piece of advice for anyone encountering a goanna, Mr Dave said, “I would highly recommend leaving it alone”.