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Call for action over dangerous dogs in Islington

PUBLISHED: 07:06 17 October 2011

Mrs Starrs with her dog Max

Mrs Starrs with her dog Max

Dieter Perry

A woman whose dog was savagely attacked by a bull terrier – roaming free in a park without a collar – is calling on the council to clamp down on irresponsible dog owners.

Carol Starrs, 54, of Offord Road, Islington, was walking four-year-old spaniel-
setter cross Max in Thornhill Square Gardens when a brindle-coloured Staffordshire bull terrier lunged for him, biting and puncturing the skin on his neck, ear and hind legs.

The dog was not wearing a collar so Mrs Starrs was left desperately trying to get the dog off Max.

When its owner eventually appeared, some minutes later, he had to drag his dog away by its legs.

Mrs Starrs said: “I pulled the dog away six times and it carried on lunging.

“The situation unfolded at the kids’ swing area so the children were seeing this happening as well, it wasn’t pleasant.

“This dog is like so many these days, walking about in parks and on main streets without a lead or, worse, no collar.”

Max is recovering at home, but the ordeal cost Mrs Starrs and her husband Malcolm £120 in vet’s bills.

She said: “He [Max] is getting better now, but he is really nervous every time we are out on a walk and he sees another dog like this.

“And I am becoming ill because of the stress of walking my dog in public highways due to this problem. I’m no longer enjoying these walks because of these selfish people, which is so unfair.

“Caledonian Road has many of these type of dogs all walking off lead or left to roam about outside local shops whilst owners are inside. Something has to be done about this issue.”

Jan Hart, Islington Council’s director of public protection, said: “We won’t tolerate crime and antisocial behaviour in Islington and take complaints about dogs attacking other dogs very seriously.

“We’ve spoken to Mrs Starrs and our animal welfare team, and Parkguard have been patrolling and searching for the dog responsible for the attack on her pet.

“She’s also been given a 24-hour number to call if she sees the dog again.

“The council has recently recruited an extra animal welfare officer to help tackle the issue of dangerous dogs.

“Our Parkguard team also has a specialist dog education and enforcement officer, who patrols Islington’s parks, including Thornhill Square Gardens.”


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