Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

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Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by Bella » 30 May 2008, 13:52

I'm looking for some avice. Forgive me but it will be a long post to make sure you get all the details.

On Wednesday OH and I took Mabel for a walk in the afternoon. She had a wonderful time. We were out for an hour, she met loads of dogs who all wanted to play so she was in heaven. About 5ft behind the house we have a huge playing field and 5ft from the far side of that there is an enormous park with a canal walk, forrest walk, tennis courts, play area, everything you could wish for. It takes us about 60 seconds to get to the playing field from the house.

Mabel is let off her lead at the bottom of the road, runs into the filed, does a few helicopter spins, does No. 1 and No. 2 and is ready for play. The way we walk back after being to the field and the park means we walk back by the canal which leads us to the same entrance to the playing field. She will often try and entice us back in by running ino the field but when she sees we're not following she comes and has her lead put on.
The exact same thing happened on Wednesday. She knew we were coming back up to the field and despite having played for an hour with various dogs she was up for more. She ran into the field, turned to see if we were coming, realised (again!) that we weren't and ran back out to have her lead put on.

As she was running towards us I heard a mans voice, shouting in a rather paniced way "Banjo, BANJO, BANJO". The I saw who he was calling. A snow white pitbull dog with a muzzle who was chasing Mabel. Mabel was completely oblivious as she was just trotting towards us. Then I saw the SECOND pitbull. A dark brown one who wasn't sure what was going on but followedm what turned out to be, her brother. The washye was frantically calling him I knew this wasn't a good sign. I've leared from our walks when you see someone call their dog in a paniced fashion to get it back on a lead as soon as they see you approach, it's best to stay well clear.

The man came flying out of the field and was freaked out. He kept telling me and OH "don't move him, I'll get them, don't move him". He was refering to Mabel as the "him". At this point I was bending down to put space between Mabel and the dogs but it was too late. I saw the white one had a muzzle on, then saw the brown one had the same but they were velcro ones and had worked it loose so they had almost full use of their mouths. The white one (male) jumped on Mabel, grabbed her neck and started trying to shake her. She's not a small dog but she's not huge either. When the white dogs sister saw what he was doing she decided to join in.

All the while the owner was having no luck getting them off Mabel. I was trying to grab Mabel but one of them half bit me on the leg and I was pushed away by the force of it. When I turned back around Mabel was on her back with the 2 dogs on top of her. She was screaming. She was looking at us while she was on her back and I've never felt so helpless in my life. I have never heard a noise like it before and that image will stay with me forever. They were biting her ears, her face, her legs and her body, anywhere they could get their mouths on. OH was trying to get to Mabel from the other side but the 2 dogs had her pinned down and covered with their own bodies.
When Mabel managed to get free she tried to run but they pulled her back down to the ground and started again. She stood up again and I managed to scoop her up. When I picked her up they both grabbed one of her back legs each and started pulling. They actually managed to pull her from my arms. I'm not proud of this as I would never hurt a hair on an animals head but I wanted to kill them. I had my leg lifted to kick them both but while they were hanging on to her legs the owner finally managed to get their leads on.

OH just went beserk. At no point were either of us going to get physical but he heard a huge range of verbal abuse that evening. I was shaking, OH was shaking and Mabel was shaking. We checked her over and saw she was missing 2 chunks of fur but seemed relatively ok. We wanted to get back hom as soon as possible and as it was only a 60 second walk away we knew we were close. Walking up the road Mabel stopped and just collapsed for a few seconds to get her breath and gather herself. I was in tears at this point.

We had been talking to a family 2 minutes before all this happened and they had been walking behind us. They caught up with us and asked was Mabel ok, were we ok and made several comments about how horrific it was to watch. The young boy that was with them looked very shaken.

We got her home and checked her over again. OH mentioned that Mabels adrenalin could be stopping us from seeing how she really is. The little fighter came into the kitchen, found her fluffy Kong and started to play!!!! It was like it never happened for her. I was still crying on and off, OH was shaken up, Mabel it seemed had forgotten about it already. We said we would take her for a walk before dinner. Both OH and I had absolutely NO appetite when we got back but Mabel polished off a huge bowl of her freshly cooked chicken.

We gave her a bath that night to try and ease any soreness she had and saw she had a few little nicks out of her skin but unbelievably, miraculously nothing more than she would have gotten if a child had fallen on concrete. I am 100% convinced it was her woolly coat that saved her from more damage. She has a very thick coat even though she recently got a summer trim.
About 30 minutes later there was a knock on the door. It was the dogs owner. He lives about 10 doors down from us. He came to see if Mabel was ok and apologise profusely. He said the white one was an angel until he hit 18 months old and now he is unpredictable with other dogs, hence the muzzle. He has been taking him to a behaviourist and is well aware the result might be he will have to be put down. I don't for a second think he called to ask us not to report the dogs, it wasn't mentioned by him at all. He said the brown one, the sister, is actually a coward but gets lead on by her brother.

The next morning she was quite stiff getting out of bed but 20 minutes later was bouncing around as usual. One of our fears was she might revert back to her fear of dogs that she went through for months when she was very small. Thankfully on her walk yesterday it was like nothing had happened.

My question is, do we report the dogs?

I am in 2 minds about it. I really really don't want to because he loves his dog and is trying his best by getting him help but in the words of the owner "he was trying to kill" Mabel. He said the dog has never shown any interest in attacking people but 3 months ago he would also have said he has shown no interest in attacking other dogs either.

As you can see from the pictures taken yesterday she is completely unaware of what almost happened, is as fit as a fiddle and also still loving the company of other dogs.




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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by grainne » 30 May 2008, 14:01

I would report it- you wouldnt fogive yourself if these dogs killed another dog in your area- imagine if Mabel was a puppy still? YOu have to report the attack.

I really feel for you- I've had a few close calls with Louie, but nothing ever as horrendus as that. My heart goes out to you, and it's a miracle Mabel is fine now

Big hugs and kisses to you both


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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by fudgepuddle » 30 May 2008, 14:07


I would definitely report them.

just imagine if you were walking mabel as a puppy - she would have had no chance, and likely been traumatised. Or imagine a small breed - like a king charles spaniel or mini poodle?

Or think how you would feel if these dogs attacked a child and you did nothing about this incident.

To my mind, there is only one choice.

This owner KNOWS his dogs are dangerous, and therefore they should not have been left off their leads without a PROPER muzzle, or without proper control. The fact that these dogs are being seen by a behaviourist speaks volumes to me, and although I may appear totally unsympathetic (which I'm not) the fact that their behaviour is known to be agressive, coupled with an owner that is not FULLY in control gives me a strong message that these dogs are unsafe.

Sorry if this offends, but having been in a similar situation myself (and not reporting it) only to see a child pinned down by the same dog 2 weeks later has left me both very upset and, quite frankly, angry that I didn't do something when I had the chance.

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by Suze & Martha » 30 May 2008, 14:18

Hi Bella

Firstly, so glad that Mabel is ok - sooo glad !

You have to report this - you were so lucky with Mabel but like Fudgepuddle said, if you see the dogs do this to another dog or a child you will feel even worse. OK - the owner is getting help but is it enough or the right help ??

I don't think you have any other option - you have to report it.

Sending you and oh hugs and big doodle licks to Bella xx
If the breeder only wants your money, dont give it them. You should be given a receipt and a contract.

Suze & Martha xx

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by amber » 30 May 2008, 14:25

Hi Bella
Sorry for you experience i really sympathise. Glad Mabel is alright
Often these sort of dogs are good with people and children but dont tolerate other dogs well. My thoughts are that had these two wanted to kill Mabel they could quite easily have done so and quickly. An older animal or a cat could have died of shock. I think if it was me, and given the circumstances that the man loves his dogs and is having behavioural help i would ask him to keep his dogs always on leads and adequate muzzels; i would also tell him that i had asked the police for advice on the matter and if i had a choice whether to prosecute or not. I would give no details to them before i knew the answer to this question.
If it could go down on record without the police taking full force of the situation this would be what i would do without prosecuting, and would inform the owner of my actions. This way he has a second chance with his dogs, but must keep them leaded and properly muzzled.
I think all this because to sum up

1/ The man cared and is recieving outside help
2/ Those dogs could have killed Mabel easily, had they wanted to.
3/ Those dogs as mentioned only have problems with other dogs, as many staffies and Pitbull types do.

Anyway best wishes with whatever you decide
Last edited by amber on 30 May 2008, 14:37, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by Butterfly » 30 May 2008, 14:36

I think the dogs should be reported, i am so pleased that your dog is ok, i cannot believe those dogs were off leads even with muzzles on, they have the patential to be dangerous weapons with there sheer jaw strength alone! If it had been a child they may not of been so lucky! My friends boxers were attacked by three staffs, and they have left her nervous female white boxer with fits through severe nervousness! i really am not a fan of these tougher breeds, give me a doodle anyday! x Hugs to you all!

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by Jane Hughes » 30 May 2008, 15:13

My initial reaction was of course you have to report it BUT it does appear that the owner of the dogs is is trying to do what he can. The first thing he has to do is to get proper muzzles that cannot be 'worked loose'. Why were the dogs off the lead if he knew they were dangerous?

It's a difficult one to know what to do. I think you have to go with your own 'gut reaction'. I wonder if it is worth talking to the owner (at least he sounds approachable and reasonable) and see what action he proposes to take to stop it happening again.

Whatever you decide to do you will have doubts. If you do nothing and you end up in a similar position to 'Fudgepuddle' and see the dogs attack someone or another dog you will feel guilty but if you do report it you will feel bad about that as well.

The only good thing is that Mabel was not hurt badly and does not seem to have been too traumatised.



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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by PennyAli » 30 May 2008, 15:19

I would report them, yes he may have been sorry and may love his dogs but the truth is he should not have got them if he was not competent in training them and socialising them properly, they will not get PTS at the first instance of attacking another dog, however their owners will be told what to do with them in no uncertain terms, far to often you see pet people with little experience treating their dogs like children and this is the result they end up with, hopefully by you taking action you will wake this man up to controlling his dogs before they do seriously hurt a person child or dog, by the sounds of it they would have had you to if you got in their way and that is unacceptable, say it was a child protecting their dog, I know my 5 year old would try and protect ours! (Although I wish she would show a bit of fear!)

His dogs should be on leads with proper muzzles on! Their is no excuse!

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by valyasmom » 30 May 2008, 15:31

I agree with Amber's post. I would tell the man you are of two minds about reporting the dogs. As a dog lover, you can empathize with him; but you could never forgive yourself if the dog(s) went on to hurt/kill an animal or child.
Your post made for heart-stopping reading. I am so happy Bella is ok.


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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by SNOOPY2 » 30 May 2008, 16:28


I am so glad that Mabel is fine. Hope you have gotten over the shock. I have found this link about the dangerous dogs act I thought it might help you come to a decision. I know it is difficult decision on your part. I had a Greyhound X rottie who was agressive when outside and eventually no amount of interventions from a behaviourist helped her. She turned on me and I had to have her PTS at 18 months. He has to be a responsible owner and to see the wider picture and more importantly keep them muzzled and on leads.

Good luck with making your decision my heart goes out to you. ... usdogsact/

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by lisabailiff » 30 May 2008, 16:46

Hi Bella I am so relieved that Mabel is ok, I am sat here feeling physically sick and tears rolling down my face, It must have been aweful for you all to witness.
I would definately report this attack to the police, as I dont think that either you of your OH would forgive yourself if these dogs attacked another dog or a child. Mabel is very lucky that she has such a thick coat and this was to be her ultimate protection throughout this attack, but other dogs and children will not have that protection.
I spoke to a lovely elderly couple in the vets when Amos went for his jabs, they were there bringing their collie for a check-up after she was attacked by two staffies on a walk the previous week. I talked to them with tears rolling down my face as I looked at this poor dog who was full of stitches all over her body 176 of them in total and two drains to allow excess fluid to escape. It was the worst thing I had ever seen. The poor dog was still in a state of shock, they were unlucky that they had no idea who the dogs belonged to, so had no chance of stopping it happening to others.
I appreciate that you are animal lovers like myself, but sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind. I am sure that the owner of these dogs is prepared for you to take this line of action, if he is the decent caring owner that you say he is (I agree he must be as he had been to a behaviourist) I feel that he may also be having his own doubts about what his dogs are capable of.
At the end of the day the decission has to be yours and your OH's as we can only offer advice, please think carefully before you make your choice as it is one that you both would have to live with.
Once again I am so pleased that Mabel is ok and doesn't seem to have any lasting effects, good luck with what you decide, thinking of you both

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by dora-doodle » 30 May 2008, 16:57

hi there,

sorry to read about this but glad mabel is okay.
as others have said these dogs should be on a lead and have a muzzle. what if it was a child or a smaller dog .... cant bear thinking about that scenario.
yes i would report them, these dogs have to be pts, the owner of them should do this of his own back as who knows what could happen the next time this happens.


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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by Bid » 30 May 2008, 17:04

Gosh Bella, how horrible :o Poor Mabel! I'm so glad she is OK, but it could have been so much worse :(

To be honest my first thoughts were that yes, you should definitely report it, but thinking about it, as you are in two minds about it why not say so to the owner. Tell him how you feel, and maybe suggest that as long as he keeps both dogs on leads & properly muzzled then you are Ok about it, but that if you see them loose or without a strong muzzle you would feel obliged to report it. He onbviously knows the risks to his dogs, and surely would go along with these precautions, since he is going to so much trouble already.

Oh, and well done to your OH for keeping the abuse verbal :lol:
Beauty without vanity, strength without insolence, courage without ferocity, and all the virtues of man without his vices - Byron

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by misskatie » 30 May 2008, 17:32

:shock: Thank God she's OK. You poor thing. Would I report them..tricky one, as he's trying to do something about it. My elderly,blind lab was set upon by 2 dogs (completely unprovoked, the vet said they saw him as a weak dog and decided to attack)- had his ear ripped half off, and big cuts - he needed a GA and an op. Would I have reported them...uh, too b****y true I would. Suppose they had taken a dislike to my daughter who was with them?Unfortunately my husband was walking him at the time, and didn't get any details, he couldn't even really describe the dogs. The owner couldn't have cared less though, and maybe that is the difference. I think I probably would report it though, suppose it is worse next time, or they attack a smaller dog. I don't doubt he cares for his dogs very much, but how can he justify putting other animals or children at risk?

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Re: Mabel savagely attacked - Do we report the dogs?

Post by AnnaCostaire » 30 May 2008, 17:59

Golly what a terrible time for you and Mabel. I am so glad she seems to be OK, but it could so easily have been a different outcome.
What you decide to do is, of course, up to you, and everyone posting here has give you plenty to think about.
But I would also like to add that, if you decide to just go and see the owner, then apart from insisting upon proper muzzles and leads at all times, I think you should demand that in future he walks these dogs singly. This would stop one dog egging the other on and more importantly, give him better control. Is he going to be able to 'hang on' to two dogs if they decide to 'set off' to attack again??

Just a thought.

Big hugs for Mabel

Anna and M
I breed miniature horses and am owned by a doodle called M who is the best thing since sliced bread.

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