A three-year-old girl spent three days in hospital and was unable to walk after being bitten on the leg – by a FALSE WIDOW SPIDER.
Toddler Ella Williamson developed an eight-inch-round blister from the tiny bite by Britain’s most venomous arachnid which took over three months to heal.
Ella’s distraught mum Bobbie-Louise Willis rushed the youngster to hospital after the nasty bite mark tripled in size over two days.
She has spoken out as experts warned the weather was ripe for a “population boom” of the creepy crawlies.
Full-time mum Bobbie-Louise, 24, from Dover, Kent, said: “It was the worst time of my life. I thought something was eating her from the inside. It just kept getting bigger.
“She wouldn’t let me touch it. So she must have been suffering in pain. I would hate to see anyone go through what she went through.”
Ella had being staying with her dad Matthew Williamson, 28, in Folkestone, Kent, who is no longer with Bobbie-Louise, when the false widow spider sank its fangs into her leg.
Bobbie-Louise first noticed Ella had a small blister when she returned home on March 22, and took her to hospital the next morning after the bite doubled in size.
Bobbie-Louise, who was pregnant with Ella’s half-brother at the time, three-week-old Oliver, said: “She was given antibiotics and sent home, but the day after it had tripled in size and looked like her leg was being eaten away.
“I took her back to hospital as she was being sick and was really poorly. I was very worried, at first I thought it might be meningitis, so horrible thoughts were going through my head.
“We waited for a skin specialist, who said it was a false widow spider bite.
“She couldn’t walk and had to be carried everywhere. It was horrible to see my daughter in that way.”
Little Ella was sent to the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, Kent, where she was confined to her room for a night and put on very strong antibiotics.
It took a month before the nasty scabbing started to get better, and three months for it to heal completely.
Ella, who attends Next Steps Pre-School in Dover, has no permanent scarring, but is now terrified of spiders.
Bobbie-Louise, who caught a false widow a year before the attack, said: “I always used to put spiders outside, but after seeing what Ella went through I would definitely kill one straight away now.”
False widow spiders, which are frequently confused for the deadly black widow, are set to invade British homes in the coming weeks due to warm weather.