A devastated dog owner has made an appeal for information after her beloved Patterdale terrier was killed by another dog in a vicious attack.
It happened last Sunday, when Debbie Cook was walking behind the Technic Factory in Walker with her daughter. Her dog Suggs was attacked by a “huge dog” which she said the owner “had no control over”.
The animal lunged at her pet twice, and the second attack proved to be fatal. Suggs sustained “horrific injuries” which meant he died in Debbie’s arms on the way to the vets.
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Debbie, 47, explained: “He was badly injured after the first lunge, but probably still would have survived. But the dog came back for Suggs, pulling the owner with him, and got another hold of him.
“At this point myself and my daughter were screaming and hysterical. I told the man he was going to kill him, and his response was ‘I know’.
“As people started to arrive, I phoned my friend to take us to the vets and the man slipped away. We are devastated and traumatised.
“I don’t want anyone else to go through what we are right now. I can’t believe my beautiful boy has gone.
“I still can’t believe it happened. God forbid it had been a child walking along the path.”
Debbie said she reported the incident to Northumbria Police, but was told that that there is “nothing they can do.” Under current legislation, a dog on dog attack is not a legal offence.
But according to the RSPCA, a court could prosecute if a person believes they would have been injured if they tried to stop a dog attacking their animal. Debbie continued: “They said they would only get involved if a dog attacked a person, unless it can be proved to be a dangerous dog.
“It clearly is dangerous, and I told them I hope it’s not a child next time. I intend to get back in touch with them and push for more action.”
She has since been trying to track down the man and his dog herself, and is appealing for anyone with information to come forward. Describing the attacking dog, she said: “The dog was huge, mainly a dark tan and brown colour and had white around its face, which I remember because it was covered in blood.
“I believe it was some kind of cross, possibly with a St. Bernard or a Mastiff. The man was tall, slim, white, with short fair facial hair. He had a hooded coat, so didn’t notice much else about him, especially because I was more focused on the dogs.”
In a post made on social media, she said: “If you are the person responsible for this, and you have the tiniest amount of decency in you, please do the right thing. Come forward, before your dog does anymore damage, traumatises another family, or attacks a child.
“I don’t know how you can live with yourself, walking away from the utter devastation you caused.
She continued: “If anyone knows who this person is, or might be, and you are keeping quiet, either to protect him, or because you think it’s too much hassle, then you are just as bad, and I beg you to reconsider.
“This dog and owner need to be found and held accountable.”
She has asked for anyone with information to get in touch via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.