Loose dogs wreak havoc

2018-10-17 15:53
A file image of a dog.

A file image of a dog.

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A Scottsville dog owner has opted to surrender his two pitbulls to the SPCA after they escaped from his property and attacked two people and a neighbour’s dog at the weekend. 

Ray Williams said he was at work on Sunday afternoon when he was contacted by a security company telling him that his two dogs had escaped from his property and attacked neighbours.

Williams said the dogs had escaped by digging under the fence.

The owner of the dog that was attacked, who asked not to be named, said Williams was very apologetic about the incident and has offered to cover all the vets’ costs for treating his injured Rott­weiler.

“His dogs escaped from his house and ran down Windsor Avenue to my premises where they ripped my dog apart through the fence.

“Another neighbour came to intervene and the dogs went away. A short while later the dogs were attacking someone else down the road and the same neighbour went down again to intervene, but the dogs ended up attacking him; he got bitten on the arm and was taken to hospital.”

Victor Kabata, who was also attacked by the dogs, said he was walking home from work when he saw three dogs loitering on the road.

“The dogs ran towards me and I tried running away but they got me before I could open the gate. They started biting and pulling me.

“A neighbour came to my rescue; he was carrying what looked like a whip and used it to get the dogs off me. The dogs turned on him and attacked him more than they had attacked me. He is still recovering in hospital,” he said.

Kabata said he was left in pain and traumatised after the attack. He was injured on his arms and legs and was taken to hospital where he got about six stitches; he is currently recovering at home.

He said there had been another incident on Windsor Avenue just last week where a university student was attacked by dogs.

“It appears as if it is becoming a common thing and something needs to be done to urgently address this problem. People also need to contain their dogs better,” he said.

Williams, the owner of the pitbulls, said he was taking his two dogs to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) as he could not have the same incident repeat itself again.

“The dogs had dug under my fence without us even knowing and I can’t have my animals hurting other people in the neighbourhood.

“Imagine what damage they could have done if I was not informed by my security; it could have been fatal and I can’t have such an incident happening again,” he said.

Williams said he was in contact with the two men who were mauled by his dogs as well as the owner of the dog that was attacked.

Cops say 'call the SPCA' when dogs start biting

Another resident, who also asked not to be named, said she had called Alexandra Road police station on Sunday afternoon after witnessing the incident. She said an officer who answered the phone said it was not the job of the police to intervene in such incidents and advised her to call SPCA. The police did not attend the scene.

An SPCA field officer who had attended the incident said: “If it is a dog attacking a person it falls under the SAPS’ Animal Amendment Act and they are supposed to deal with the matter. In a situation where a dog is attacking a dog or dogs fighting then the SPCA would get involved in trying to intervene and separate the animals.”

The officer said if anyone encounters a dog attacking a person or a dog attacking another dog they can try to get the dog off by pouring a bucket of water on the dog.

“It doesn’t always work but that’s the safest alternative. If a person is capable then they can try to physically grab the dog off although we wouldn’t advise this as in most cases the dog ends up attacking the person trying to intervene,” he said.

Provincial police spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala said when a person is attacked by a dog, the police must be informed so that a case of keeping a ferocious dog is opened against the owner. She said if a person dies due to the attack, an inquest docket will be opened. When pets attack each other the SPCA should be contacted. 

Three attacks by loose dogs in past year

• In November last year, The Witness reported that a Witness newspaper delivery man felt lucky to be alive after he was attacked by two vicious pitbull terriers while on his rounds in the Woodlands area.

• In September last year, two UKZN students were attacked by two Rottweilers which escaped from their owner’s yard and strayed onto the campus.

• In June this year, The Witness reported that two pitbulls had killed an armed intruder in Scottsville Extension.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  dog attacks

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