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'Irresponsible dog owner forcing us away'

Worcester Editorial 23rd Oct, 2014 Updated: 19th Oct, 2016

THE OWNER of a dog viciously attacked in Northwick said she and other walkers have been forced away from their usual route by an ‘irresponsible’ neighbour.

April Turner was walking her 11-year-old Jack Russell, Meeko, off Hillcrest Rise last October when it was set upon by a Newfoundland cross Sheepdog, Buddy, belonging to Geoffrey Allen, who lives on the road.

The attack lasted about ten minutes and resulted in Meeko being treated for puncture wounds after he was bitten on the back, grabbed and shaken repeatedly.

Mr Allen, who also had his finger bit off by Buddy in the incident, agreed to pay almost £600 in vets bills to Ms Turner, and was told he had to be muzzled.

But the 76-year-old’s dog went on to attack other pets twice this year and earlier this month, Worcester Magistrates Court made a dangerous dog order that his pet must be kept on a lead and muzzled at all times.

However Ms Turner, of Old Northwick Lane, told The Observer she was still fearful there would be another attack and so she and her fellow dog walkers had decided to go elsewhere.

“Everybody knows everybody around here and most people don’t walk down Hillcrest now because you don’t know if he will be out on the lawn,” she said.

“People have changed their routes to avoid it.”

The court order means if Mr Allen’s dog is found not to be muzzled or without a lead, the police officially have the power to destroy it.

“He has never stuck to the resolution and I am not convinced he will stick to the order because he has been told he could have it put down, but since that moment it has happened another two times,” Ms Turner added.

“That dog with the right owner wouldn’t have this problem. I think he is an irresponsible owner and the wrong owner for that dog.”

A police spokesman said: “We have a responsibility to prevent harm by removing dangerous and prohibited dogs from the wider community and we will work hard to crack down on illegal dogs and continue to ask for assistance and support from the public in this matter.”

The Observer was unable to contact Mr Allen at the time of going to press.

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