A Yorkie’s leg had to be amputated after it was attacked by an Alsatian. The incident has traumatised the Yorkie’s owners and they are appealing to dog owners everywhere to be more aware and considerate.
The incident happened at 1pm on Tuesday June 20, when Debbie Duraan was walking her dogs Hendrik and Chanel through the suburban streets of Simon’s Town.
They passed the home of their neighbour – Rhoda Moore – as she arrived home. “As we were walking past, the gate to her home opened, and her dog ran out towards me and my dogs,” Ms Duraan said. “Her dog attacked Hendrik very badly, and I screamed at her to come and help me.”
“At the same time, another neighbour, Michael Richards, came running to help us as he saw what was happening. He picked my dog up and Rhoda called her dog in,” Ms Duraan added.
Hendrik was rushed to the Glencairn Veterinary Clinic where the injuries were so bad his back leg had to be amputated. His care and procedure cost in excess of R10 332.
Thys Odendal, Ms Duraan’s partner, said they were all traumatised and that their little Yorkie was still on meds and had to be carried up and down the levels of their home.
“We reported the incident on the day to law enforcement, received reference number 86807 Lunka and on Friday June 23 we followed up with law enforcement and received reference number 86807 Kimberley.
“We also reported the incident and signed an affidavit under oath with Constable Mokobe at Simon’s Town police station,” Mr Odendal said.
“On Wednesday June 28 we then reported the incident to law enforcement Fish Hoek, Senior Inspector Hlokula, who compiled the docket and delivered it to the Law Enforcement Special Dog Unit,” he said.
On Thursday June 29, he said, Rowena Geduld and Cheswin Bridgens, as well as two officers from the dog unit arrived at his home for a final statement but were not able to speak to Ms Moore.
“We want this situation escalated and we want that dog, which is vicious and a danger to the community, to be removed. We want the matter set to bed and to protect the rest of the community from the harm we experienced,” he said.
The False Bay Echo has spoken at length with Ms Moore. She lives alone with her dog. She said her lawyer has advised her not to say anything publicly, because of the possibility of a court case about the matterbut yesterday Ms Moore, 77, spoke to the Echo, saying she has apologised repeatedly for what she describes as a “freak accident;” and has paid the vet bill for the Yorkie in full.
Ms Moore said her 9-year-old dog is her companion after the death of her husband. She chose a big dog as a safeguard, but has taken her dog for training for 7 of her 9 years.
“I could not have a dog that size that isn’t well trained,” she said.
Ms Moore said she had left home early that morning and was returning home for the first time that day at 1pm.
“I have six doors which keep my dog from the garage – they are always locked – this is our safety,” Ms Moore said.
On the day in question, Ms Moore’s char was working in her home.
“I had no idea that the doors were open or that she could access my garage or I would never have opened it. She wasn’t rushing out to attack the Yorkies – she came running to see me,” Ms Moore said. “I can only think that she heard activity in the street and went to investigate and somehow there was suddenly a lot of confusion, with screaming, and she reacted. I would never have imagined she would do that,” Ms Moore said.
She was parking her car when she heard Ms Duraan screaming.
“By the time I got there, our neighbour had separated the dogs, and once we had sent my dog back inside – he climbed straight into my car with me. He held the Yorkie – and we dashed straight to the veterinary clinic,” Ms Moore said.
She said the whole event was deeply upsetting for everyone, and says it was just a freak accident.
“I have repeatedly apologised and they didn’t even have to ask me to pay the vet bill, I just did that. I am so sorry about what happened, and can’t change it.
“The only recourse I have is to do the right thing, and I feel I have done that,” Ms Moore said. She said the vet kept her updated while the Yorkie was treated. Ms Moore says her dog is actually well trained and well socialised, and that when they go walking she has takes the extra precaution of putting a muzzle on her.
“She is my only company and my best friend. It was the most terrible thing when Law Enforcement took her away.
“But she is home again, and I am so grateful to have her home, I don’t know what I would do without her,” she said.
Ms Moore said she will enforce even further measures to ensure that the only way her dog ever leaves their home is on a leash with her.
“I created all the doors to the garage to keep us both safe, not because she is dangerous. I am so sorry about all this, and to have lost good neighbours through this, because we have always been friendly until this,” she said.