Warnings over spate of dog attacks in borough’s parks

Dog owners Susan Bradshaw and Graham Hayes from St Helens, with their injured dog Jack, they are angry and upset after their dog was attacked, she was also bitten during the attack.
Dog owners Susan Bradshaw and Graham Hayes from St Helens, with their injured dog Jack, they are angry and upset after their dog was attacked, she was also bitten during the attack.

Dog owners are demanding action and warning other animal lovers to be vigilant following attacks on pets by two out-of-control Great Danes.

Susan Bradshaw, from Moss Bank, spoke out after her pet Jack was savaged at Rainford’s annual walking day, suffering deep gashes to his sides.

Fellow dog owner Mike Webster, from Rainford, says his greyhound-crossbreed Mia was also attacked by two similar animals on a popular walking path in April.

Ms Bradshaw, who was also bitten on her nose during the attack at the junction of Ormskirk Road and Arnian Road, spoke of the terrifying moments the huge animal, which had no lead or muzzle, bounded towards her eight-year-old pet Jack and seized him in its jaws.

Ms Bradshaw, 49, said: “It was like watching something on TV. The dog spotted Jack and picked him up like a rag in its mouth.

“I don’t know what flashed through my mind but I thought he would die, I didn’t think he could survive. Someone managed to get the Great Dane off Jack and I got down to protect him, and the next thing I knew someone was trying to help me up and my nose was bleeding.

“What also shocked me was the woman who owns the dog never came to see if I was OK or how my dog was, she just carried on walking.”

Ms Bradshaw had to go to a walk-in centre to check if her injury meant she needed a tetanus jab, while Jack was left requiring surgery.

Merseyside Police are now investigating the incident as it was not simply a dog-on-dog attack but Ms Bradshaw says she is alarmed because her young nieces could easily have been on the spot at the time of the savaging.

She said: “We were standing with my nieces aged six and three but thankfully my daughter Gemma, who was in the procession with her Brownies group, took them walking along the route with her.

“If there had been a child there it’s just unbelievable to think what could have happened.”

Mr Webster, of Junction Road, says he believes the dog which attacked Ms Bradshaw and Jack was one of two which carried out a mauling of his pet as they were crossing a linear park made out of an old railway line.

He also expressed concern about more vulnerable members of the community being attacked.

Mr Webster, 59, said: “The dogs just appeared. I tried to get in front of Mia but they attacked her from the front and back. I was pulling her round on her lead to try to make her a moving target.

“I was screaming at the man and woman to get them on their leads, I couldn’t believe how slowly they responded. It was probably only a few seconds but it felt like an eternity.

“Mia had bite marks from her neck down to her bottom, all along her back. I had to rush her to an emergency vet’s in Liverpool.

“I believe one of them is the same dog which attacked Susan. You don’t see many Great Danes about and black ones are even more unusual, I’d actually never seen one in my life before..
“I just want the owners to be made to act responsibly.”

and keep them on a lead and with a muzzle if necessary

“It would be very sad if it takes someone being seriously injured to get something done about this.”