ANC man dies trying to stop dog fight

2015-06-04 08:44
Tony Swaminathan suffered a heart attack while trying to separate a dog fight at his home.

Tony Swaminathan suffered a heart attack while trying to separate a dog fight at his home. (Supplied)

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Pietermaritzburg - A former transitional local councillor and member of the ANC died of a heart attack while attempting to separate a dog fight on Tuesday night.

Tony Swaminathan, 50, collapsed while trying to separate his two male German Shepherds at his Nagpur Road home.

Swaminathan’s wife Deborah said it was “traumatising” to watch her husband collapse.

“My husband loved his animals and he died trying to save them.”

She said Swaminathan attempted to separate the dogs, Liaka and ­Anthus, for almost an hour before he collapsed.

“We called the SPCA who arrived quickly and were very helpful. Our neighbours and paramedics arrived, too. However, no one could get into our yard because they were afraid of the dogs and Tony was unconscious,” said Deborah.

She said she and her daughter ­Farishta tried to carry her husband to the paramedics but “it was too late”.

“He was a very loving and protective man who loved animals. The moment he collapsed, the dogs stopped fighting. They did not attack him during the fight,” she said.

The two dogs were put down by the SPCA.

Swaminathan was employed by Msunduzi Municipality and worked at the Bombay Civic Centre.

“He was very involved in the ANC especially in the northern areas. He was a stalwart in the ANC and was ­always at the forefront in assisting ­anyone,” said ANC Exco member ­Rachel Soobiah.

Visiting the grieving family on Wednesday, uMgungundlovu District Mayor Yusuf Bhamjee said Swaminathan’s death was a “tragedy” to the ANC and community and that he will be missed

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  animals

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