A FAMILY has been left devastated after their Border Terrier Betsy was mauled so badly by three larger dogs that she had to be put to sleep.
The attack took place in Hastings Country Park last Wednesday morning (May 9), when Ronan Bond had taken his friend Simon Bartlett’s dog Betsy for a walk, along with his own Parson Russell Terrier, Charlie.
Mr Bartlett, who lives on the West Hill with his wife Leslie and two teenage children, spoke of the need to highlight the fact that out of control dogs are a genuine threat to those who like to enjoy public spaces.
He said: “We got her to the vets as quickly as possible but as a result of the horrific injuries she sustained in the attack the vet advised us that the only kind option was to put her to sleep.
“The vet also stated that the injuries were so horrific it would appear they were inflicted by killer dogs.”
Mr Bond was with the dogs in Ecclesbourne Glen near the reservoir at around 9am, when he rounded a corner and saw a young man with three large mastiff type dogs, two white and one tan, which he was fighting to get under control.
He said that one of the three wrestled from the man’s grasp, and it was at this point that Betsy broke free and was chased down by the three dogs and savaged.
“The guy was at one point lying on top of Betsy, trying to protect her.
“He seemed scared, as if he didn’t know what the dogs were going to do.”
After quickly taking his own dog to safety, Mr Bond returned and caught sight of the man running away, but there was no sign of Betsy,
Upon further investigation, he found her dumped in a hedgerow, conscious, but seriously injured and in deep shock, with lots of attack wounds.
He said: “The vet said that he had not seen anything of that nature before.”
The dogs’ owner was described as black, in his early 20s, 5’10”, and of medium build, wearing a long coat.
Mr Bartlett said: “Betsy was a happy, friendly, much loved little Border Terrier in the prime of her life.
“Her untimely death in this savage and brutal way has left myself, my wife and two teenage children devastated and bewildered, and our kind friend traumatised and frightened to return to the country park.”
A spokesperson for Hastings Borough council said: “Attacks on this scale are thankfully rare, but if you need to report an incident, please contact our street warden team on 01424 451077.”