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Owner's call for action on dangerous dogs after pet Labrador savaged

Nick Westwell was walking two-year-old Bella along the canal when another dog set upon her

Nick Westwell, from Oswaldtwistle, with his dog Bella

A dog owner says authorities need greater powers to tackle dangerous dogs after his Labrador was subjected to a horrific attack.

Nick Westwell was walking his two-year-old chocolate Labrador Bella along the Leeds-Liverpool canal in Oswaldtwistle when she was viciously set upon by another dog.

Hyndburn council’s dog warden has visited the owner of the dog which attacked Bella and advised that it be muzzled and kept on a lead in public at all times.

But Nick, who lives in Oswaldtwistle and is chairman of the Official Accrington Stanley Supporters Club, say the council and the police need greater powers to act in cases of extreme animal attacks.

The 57-year-old sports coach said: “I am absolutely disgusted that all they can do is advise the owner to muzzle it.

Chocolate Labrador Bella was attacked by another dog while being walked by her owner Nick Westwell in Oswaldtwistle

“I was just walking my dog along the canal when this dog comes charging towards my dog, pushes through me and grabbed her around her chest.

“It tore her chest out, my dog was screaming with her insides being pulled out. I had to fight for five minutes to get my dog free, which was harrowing to say the least.”

Bella had to undergo emergency treatment at a veterinary hospital in Bury and is only just beginning to recover from her ordeal.

Nick added: “I rushed her to the local vets and they panicked because it was so serious so I had to transfer her to Bury animal hospital.

“She’s had three lots of surgery since then.

“Finally it looks like the stitches are just starting to hold and knit together. I have had to sleep with the dog downstairs every night to make sure she’s alright.”

Hyndburn Councillor Paul Cox, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environmental Services

 

Coun Paul Cox, Hyndburn council’s portfolio holder for environmental services, said that the dog warden has visited the owner.

He said: “[They] advised that the dog should be muzzled and put on a lead at all times whilst out in public and we are currently exploring the legal processes open to us to ensure this happens.

“The police have also been informed.”

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