Dunedin police say a woman who was punched, then stabbed in the neck and face at her home did not know her attacker, and was lucky to escape further violence.
The woman, who was at her Duncan Street, City Rise, home with her three-year-old daughter, was attacked by a man when she answered a knock at her front door.
He punched her, stabbed her in the neck and inflicted serious facial injuries.
She fended off the assailant and fled the house with her daughter, who was unharmed.
A passing motorist took her to hospital.
Detective Inspector Kevin Hooper says the woman suffered stab wounds to her neck and face and the incident was potentially life-threatening.
He's urging nearby residents to check their properties for any items that may have been discarded, and report any suspicious activity in the area at about 8.30 am.
The attacker is described as Pakeha, tall at about 1.84m, with short hair and facial stubble.
He was wearing jeans and a black hoodie.
The woman has been undergoing surgery.