A young puppy has been killed during a “savage” attack by another dog in a Lanarkshire park.
Ten-month-old Yorkshire Terrier Hugo was left “brain dead” after being mauled while being walked in Greenhall Park in Blantyre.
The pooch died later that evening, last Thursday, January 20.
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Devastated owner Angela McIntosh is now calling for the Staffordshire Bull Terrier that “ripped apart” her beloved pet to be put down.
In an emotional post on social media, Angela says she wants justice for her precious Hugo and does not want him to die in vain.
Her post read: “My wee Hugo ‘boss’ wasn’t just a dog, he was my best friend, my comforter, my wee guard dog and we went everywhere together”.
She said she is “heartbroken” and that Hugo “didn’t deserve to die in that way”.
Angela detailed her final moments with the pup and told Lanarkshire Live: “The vet told me to leave and come back and I got a call to say Hugo had stopped breathing and that he was brain dead.”
She added: “I want the dog destroyed. It will kill again or it could kill a child.”
The mauling occurred last Thursday, when local dog walker Stephanie Dunn took Hugo on a walk with three other dogs, including the Staffie.
Angela continued: “If the dog walker had told me that the Staffie was out a walk for the first time, I never would have let my wee boy go.
“Staffies have locked jaws but if it was another dog I would’ve thought the same thing, that the dog should’ve been out on its own first. The fact that it wasn’t I think is wrong.
“I’m devastated. I’m not eating, I’m not sleeping. I want justice. That’s all I can get as I can’t get Hugo back.
“I’m a dog lover but I want that dog killed.”
During the walk, the Staffie attacked Hugo out of nowhere, leaving dog walker Stephanie and two other locals who desperately tried to assist, helpless in what they describe as a “freak incident”.
Stephanie has been left badly shaken by the attack and has since taken the difficult decision to fold her dog walking business. And she says what happened has severely impacted her mentally.
She explained: “I’m absolutely ill, this is killing me. I’m traumatized from this and just been in such a mess.
“Before I take out any new dog and the client makes an inquiry I send a full questionnaire to ask everything about the dog and how it gets along with other dogs, and how it is around children, and if it is aggressive.
“In this case with the Staffie, the owner said it was great with other dogs and is friendly. The Staffie is also only 10 months old. All four dogs that I had on that day were all pups.
“I also arranged a meet and greet with the owner of the Staffie and told her that all dogs are on a four-week trial period which is a zero tolerance of aggressive dogs, which I’m really strict about.
“I had absolutely no concerns with this Staffie and it was so friendly when I saw him.”
Stephanie told how she took all four dogs out her van on Thursday afternoon for their walk and even took pictures to show their owners how well they were all getting on.
“Things were going great. Then a man and his dog were walking by me and the path was narrow so I moved into the side to let them past and then at the flick of a switch, the Staffie attacked Hugo.
“There was no warning, no growling or anything like that to suggest he was going to attack. It was unbelievable.
“As soon as he started attacking Hugo I started screaming for help straight away.
“A couple came over and started helping me, and during the struggle which had us all in shock, their collars had come off. It just felt like the whole thing went on forever.
“At one point we actually put ourselves in danger to save Hugo and did everything in our power to stop this.
“I didn’t even care if I got injured, I just wanted to save Hugo. We fought tooth and nail to save him but it just wasn’t enough.
“I got a towel from the van to stop the bleeding and keep Hugo warm before getting the other dogs in the van.”
Blantyre couple John and Lisa O’Brien witnessed the horrific attack. John said: “It just turned, it just went for the wee dog. We did everything we could, but it got off its lead and started attacking it.
“The Staffie seemed to just turn round and took its chance as someone was walking by and they moved over.
“It was awful what we saw. It was pulling the wee dog and trying to tear it apart.
“There was nothing anyone could have done, it wasn’t the dog walker’s fault. She did everything she could. It’s a horrible situation for everyone involved.”
“I’ve never seen anything like it, it just destroyed it,” John added.
“The Staffie was built like a tank and it was just a wee pup it killed.”
Lisa O’Brien added: “It’s so tragic. If only we were five minutes earlier leaving our house for our walk, it might have been a different outcome.”
Still trying to look after her own health since the incident, Stephanie admitted she is devastated.
She added: “I did everything in my power to save that poor wee dog. I’m sick to my stomach from what’s happened.
“It was a complete freak accident. If I ever had the slightest inclination something like this was going to happen I would never have taken this dog out.
“This has affected me mentally so much that I’ve made the decision to close my business down. I’m absolutely heartbroken. My confidence has been shattered.
“This will affect me for the rest of my life.”
Meanwhile, Hugo’s owner Angela wants more to be done about his untimely death.
She said: “He was on oxygen and morphine and had a broken leg but had also sustained really bad injuries. [He was] ripped apart and never recovered from them.
“I gave him a kiss and spoke to him and he briefly lifted his wee head but his eyes were fixed.”
“I’m still not letting this go until proper justice is done,” she added.
The matter was reported to police as well as South Lanarkshire Council and Environmental Health have since launched an investigation.
A police spokesperson said: “Officers received a report of a dog on dog attack.
“Officers gave advice and referred the reporter to the appropriate agencies.”
A council spokesperson added: “Environmental Services is aware of the dog control incident and is currently investigating.”
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.