DOG owners are being urged to take care when walking their four-legged friends after a pet was savaged by a large, aggressive animal.
Eight-year-old springer spaniel Gem suffered a huge wound to her neck after being mauled by a black lurcher-type dog in Aspull.
Gem had to be rushed to Manchester for emergency treatment after the attack in the Holly Road fields adjacent to Manor Grove at around 7.30pm on June 6.
Her owner William Bridge, who was walking with wife Lorraine, told how he had to prise the lurcher’s jaws away from Gem’s neck with his bare hands and is warning other owners to be vigilant.
Mr Bridge, 56, said: “The lurcher ran across the fields at speed and grabbed my dog by the neck. It basically pushed my wife out of the way.
“I had to prise open the lurcher’s top and bottom jaws which locked around my own dog’s neck. We were fortunate we were almost next to our dog or her injuries could have been much worse.
“She’s got about 16 stitches across her neck and had two operations so she should make a full recovery, but she’s now very timid and scared. Given the trauma it will take her a while to adjust.”
Gem required an overnight stay at a surgery to allow vets to tend her injuries, which included a large gaping flap of skin on her neck.
Mr Bridge said the lurcher was brought on to the fields by a man walking with a woman and young boy, and described the owner’s attitude to the attack as “complacent” although he did apologise.
He is now urging other dog owners taking their pets for walks in the fields to look out for the animal.
He said: “I was able to release the lurcher’s jaws, but if it had been an elderly person or young child out with their dog I shudder to think what might have happened. They might not be strong enough to do that.”