Parents claim school refuses to remove dog despite kid choking from allergies

Parents of a sick six-year-old have slammed a school for refusing to get rid of their pet dog despite their child "choking" from her allergy to animal hair.

Mark Gordon, 53, and Irena Ivanyk, 44, claim they were forced to pull their daughter Yana out of The Mead school in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, after the school refused to get rid of the animal.

The pair said they were left puzzled after Yana came home from school struggling to breathe but was later diagnosed with an unexplained allergy.

Mum Irena said her little one's diagnosis became clear after she attended parents evening and spotted the dog in the corridor, reports The Mirror.

"We just didn't realise this was an allergic reaction to animals at the start," she said.

"She started having something very similar to a virus and it just kept on happening, we couldn't understand why."

The mum said she had not been informed of the school's decision to introduce a dog – even though she has confirmation from her GP of her daughter's allergic reactions to dogs and cats.

On the night when Irena began homeschooling her daughter, she claims Yana became very ill and started "choking and suffocating".

The parents insist it was clear the reaction was the same symptoms that were present when she had previously been diagnosed with the allergy.

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Now Yana will have to remain on an inhaler for another four months.

Irena said: "It was very hard for me to watch and it was just so difficult for all the family, we were so stressed and worried.

"I don't want my daughter to have to depend on an inhaler for the rest of her life."

In the school's response to the parents' claim, they said they had made plans to reduce the chance of Yana and Mitzi the dog being in the same room at one time.

They also maintain all children must sanitise their hands after coming into contact with Mitzi and they would require Yana to bring all required medication to school.

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However, Irena insists it is still not safe for Yana to return until the dog is removed from the school premises. She has been homeschooling her daughter since September 16.

A spokesperson for The Mead school told The Mirror: "I'm afraid that we are unable to comment on ongoing parental conversations.

"However, The Mead is committed to providing a safe, happy and enriching educational experience for all its pupils and we are working with the family to resolve this matter."

The Mead school has been contacted for comment.

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