A woman in her 40s was mauled to death by a dog at her home in the early hours of Wednesday (25 October) in Australia's capital Canberra. The dog, reportedly a Pit Bull-type, injured another man as well.

According to the police, the man was visiting the woman, Tania Klemke, when the animal – which police believe was her pet and lived with her – attacked the pair at around 3.40am local time (4.40am BST).

ACT Police said that they were called to a property in the suburb of Watson in Canberra after a number of neighbours heard a male voice calling for help.

The police said that when they arrived at the scene of the attack, the injured man was in the backyard of the property. He directed them inside the house where Klemke was lying injured.

When police officers tried to perform CPR on Klemke, the dog attacked them as well. The officers had no other choice but to shoot and kill the animal.

"While CPR was being performed on the female victim, the dog moved to attack the police officers, and in order to protect themselves, there was a necessity to discharge the firearm," ACT Police Detective Acting Superintendent Tony Crocker said.

Klemke is said to have died of her injuries, the 9NEWS website reported.

The man had a bite wound on the inside of his leg, but none of the police were injured in the incident. "He doesn't appear to have life-threatening injuries and is in a stable condition," a police officer added.

"This is a tragic event for the family and our thoughts go out to the family for what is quite a horrific incident," Crocker said at a press conference.

The AFP Forensic Services and ACT Policing Criminal Investigations are investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident. A report will be prepared for the ACT Coroner.