A family are heartbroken after their beloved pet dog was picked up “like a rat” and killed by a boxer-type dog.
Harley, a miniature Jack Russell, was not even two years old when he was fatally attacked while out on a walk in Tameside, Greater Manchester, on Friday afternoon.
The family-of-three – who did not wish to be named – consists of a mum, dad and teenage daughter, reports the Manchester Evening News.
The mum was walking the pet near Silver Springs, near to Tameside Hospital, in Ashton-under-Lyne, when the little dog was mauled, before the attacker turned on her.
The woman was bitten on the ear and hand as she desperately tried to step in.
She was rushed to hospital by a passer-by while Harley was taken to a veterinary hospital, where he was sadly pronounced dead.
The dad said: “We are absolutely heartbroken, we are devastated.
“He was our life. He went to the vets but there was nothing they could do, he was already gone.
“We got him when he was the littlest pup. He would have been two-years-old in September. We’re just devastated, we don’t know what to do.
“The dog brought us all together, he was like a child to us. Everywhere we look now there is dog stuff and no dog. Unless you’ve had a dog it’s hard to explain, but you can’t bear it.”
The family have been appealing for information about the incident, which took place at around 1.15pm on July 15.
They say the dog appeared ‘well-built like a boxer dog’, but was grey in colour and wore a gold collar.
A woman who is believed to have been walking the dog was seen ‘shouting’ at it, before she left the scene in the direction of Ridge Hill.
She is described as being around the age of 30, about 5ft 5ins tall with her hair in a bun, and was wearing a white outfit at the time.
The family say they were told the mum was lucky not to have also been killed by the dog. They insist dog owners should keep their pets on a lead while outside.
“That dog could have killed a child,” the dad said. “I’m just glad it wasn’t my daughter that was walking Harley at the time.
“You always get these incidents were things happen with big dogs, but it’s irresponsible owners. If this woman had the dog on a lead this would never have happened.”
He added: “It just came straight out of nowhere. It picked my dog up like it was a rat and it just bit him to death.
“My wife was screaming. This woman was just stood there, she didn’t do anything, she didn’t help. She ran off and the dog followed her.”
The incident has been reported to Greater Manchester Police.