Couple attacked by dogs on Pendle Hill walk

Blackburn Citizen: Rebecca McKenna was walking her dog Bobby when she and her boyfriend were attacked Rebecca McKenna was walking her dog Bobby when she and her boyfriend were attacked

LEADING dog experts today called for training for owners who can’t control their pets after a couple were attacked on Pendle Hill.

Rebecca McKenna and Andrew Graham ended up in hospital with bite injuries from what they described as two boxer dogs.

Dog instructor Anthony Holden and award-winning former dog warden Steve Wood said owners needed greater education about the consequences of their dogs’ behaviour.

Miss McKenna, of Station Road, Huncoat, said she feared for her life during the attack and had to take time off work after suffering flashbacks.

The couple said they were out walking their pet Chihuahua, Bobby, when they were set upon by the boxers, who were not on leads.

Miss McKenna, 21, said: “We parked up at the Wellsprings in Clitheroe Road and got about half a mile onto the hill when Andy turned round and saw them racing towards us and shouted to pick Bobby up.

“One started biting my ankles and wouldn’t stop. Andy ran over and they bit him too. They were strong and dragged me until I slipped to the ground.

“I dropped Bobby and they went for him. I could hear him scream. I remember rolling on my side and getting back up, grabbing Bobby and huddling together with Andy, trying to keep calm.

“We turned our backs on the boxers but they carried on biting and dragged me down again.

“I was just screaming to scare them off but they weren’t for stopping. I didn’t want to set Bobby down because I knew he’d be gone in seconds.”

Miss McKenna said a man then arrived and struggled to control the animals.

Mr Holden, who runs Alpha Dog Training in Higham, said: “Each case is unique but some dogs can just switch having never shown aggression before.

“I think dogs are better off off their leads but if you haven’t got control of the dog it shouldn’t be off a lead in public places.

“A dog needs to be a dog. The window for training, in most cases, is in its first 20 weeks to do as much socialising as possible.

“We need to train and educate people. If we don’t do that, do we bring dog licences back in?

“If the owners don’t go through training then they can’t keep the dog. That’s maybe something else that could be looked at.”

Miss McKenna said the attack went on for ‘a good three or four minutes’.

She said: “Andy had a bit of an argument with the man but I was too flustered to speak. I just told him to control his dogs, turned my back and ran to the car.

“There was blood all over my legs and rips in my jeans. The adrenaline was pumping and I didn’t feel the pain until we started driving, I was that petrified.”

The couple drove straight to Accrington Victoria Hospital where their wounds were checked and cleaned.

Miss McKenna, who works in telesales in Preston, said she spent three days on crutches because of numerous bites on her left leg and ankle, while Mr Graham’s right leg was badly bitten.

She said the incident had put her off walking and that wearing three jackets had prevented her from further injury.

She been back to hospital three times since the attack, which happened at around 4.40pm on November 23, for check-ups on her wounds.

Miss McKenna said: “I couldn’t sleep I was so upset. I thought that was it, that I would be left for dead. It’s something I’ll never forget. It was terrible.”

Mr Wood, now welfare officer at Hyndburn Stray Dogs In Need, said: “By law it’s quite simple. If it attacks a human it’s clearly dangerous and be taken off the owner.

“I’m a strong believer that everyone should have a qualification to say they can look after a dog. It works in Germany.

“Unfortunately some owners don’t know any better. They’re absolute lunatics and they don’t care about themselves, let alone the dogs.”

PC Anita Whittle from Lancashire Police confirmed an investigation was underway and said she was due to take a statement from the boxer dogs’ owner today.

Comments (20)

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9:23am Mon 2 Dec 13

past it says...

Dogs should be kept on a lead, it should be law! or would the dog lovers prefer more to be hurt, or worse someone to die?
Dogs should be kept on a lead, it should be law! or would the dog lovers prefer more to be hurt, or worse someone to die? past it

9:48am Mon 2 Dec 13

rudis_dad says...

past it wrote:
Dogs should be kept on a lead, it should be law! or would the dog lovers prefer more to be hurt, or worse someone to die?
People who let their dogs off the lead but can't control them are NOT dog lovers - people who know and respect their animals know when they can and cannot be trusted off the lead. I was attacked by a Jack Russell in Towneley Park this weekend - the owner had no control over it whatsoever. They weren't best pleased when I applied a size 9 to it and launched it a good 20 yards. And yes, I am a dog owner who knows how to control his animal (which is why it is NEVER off the lead unless it's in an area where I know it can't do any damage) but I will defend myself with force if another dog attacks me or my dog. Dog licences should be reintroduced, and potential owners made to take a test to prove suitability.
[quote][p][bold]past it[/bold] wrote: Dogs should be kept on a lead, it should be law! or would the dog lovers prefer more to be hurt, or worse someone to die?[/p][/quote]People who let their dogs off the lead but can't control them are NOT dog lovers - people who know and respect their animals know when they can and cannot be trusted off the lead. I was attacked by a Jack Russell in Towneley Park this weekend - the owner had no control over it whatsoever. They weren't best pleased when I applied a size 9 to it and launched it a good 20 yards. And yes, I am a dog owner who knows how to control his animal (which is why it is NEVER off the lead unless it's in an area where I know it can't do any damage) but I will defend myself with force if another dog attacks me or my dog. Dog licences should be reintroduced, and potential owners made to take a test to prove suitability. rudis_dad

12:52pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Elsie C says...

I know this lady & gent were shocked by what happened to them, but I think they still should have got the owners details and taken a photo of the dogs if possible & then followed it up and insisted the dogs be put down. It is appalling that this happens, the offending dogs should be put down regardless of excuses by the owners and the owners should be heavily fined and be made to pay compensation.
I know this lady & gent were shocked by what happened to them, but I think they still should have got the owners details and taken a photo of the dogs if possible & then followed it up and insisted the dogs be put down. It is appalling that this happens, the offending dogs should be put down regardless of excuses by the owners and the owners should be heavily fined and be made to pay compensation. Elsie C

1:14pm Mon 2 Dec 13

AnthonyUK says...

past it wrote:
Dogs should be kept on a lead, it should be law! or would the dog lovers prefer more to be hurt, or worse someone to die?
It would depend on the temprament and breed of the dog round people;some are soft as a brush and wouldn't hurt nobody on or off the lead and they'll either come in a friendly way to strangers happily seeing them or they'll happily tolerate being petted and stroked on or off the lead with no anger or aggression at all. Not all dogs are bad.
[quote][p][bold]past it[/bold] wrote: Dogs should be kept on a lead, it should be law! or would the dog lovers prefer more to be hurt, or worse someone to die?[/p][/quote]It would depend on the temprament and breed of the dog round people;some are soft as a brush and wouldn't hurt nobody on or off the lead and they'll either come in a friendly way to strangers happily seeing them or they'll happily tolerate being petted and stroked on or off the lead with no anger or aggression at all. Not all dogs are bad. AnthonyUK

2:56pm Mon 2 Dec 13

pete13 says...

No dog can be trusted !
No dog can be trusted ! pete13

3:22pm Mon 2 Dec 13

AnthonyUK says...

pete13 wrote:
No dog can be trusted !
Wrong. Not all dogs would turn on people unless molested badly treated or hurt under another owner.
[quote][p][bold]pete13[/bold] wrote: No dog can be trusted ![/p][/quote]Wrong. Not all dogs would turn on people unless molested badly treated or hurt under another owner. AnthonyUK

3:23pm Mon 2 Dec 13

You're not mugging me off that easily says...

pete13 wrote:
No dog can be trusted !
They are all potential killers.
[quote][p][bold]pete13[/bold] wrote: No dog can be trusted ![/p][/quote]They are all potential killers. You're not mugging me off that easily

3:43pm Mon 2 Dec 13

AnthonyUK says...

You're not mugging me off that easily wrote:
pete13 wrote:
No dog can be trusted !
They are all potential killers.
Yes but not all of them are like that at all;you're kneejerking!
[quote][p][bold]You're not mugging me off that easily[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]pete13[/bold] wrote: No dog can be trusted ![/p][/quote]They are all potential killers.[/p][/quote]Yes but not all of them are like that at all;you're kneejerking! AnthonyUK

4:15pm Mon 2 Dec 13

hasslem hasslem says...

You're not mugging me off that easily wrote:
pete13 wrote:
No dog can be trusted !
They are all potential killers.
humans kill a lot more than any dog - put down all humans, make them walk on a lead - well, the ones in burnley....anyhow.
[quote][p][bold]You're not mugging me off that easily[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]pete13[/bold] wrote: No dog can be trusted ![/p][/quote]They are all potential killers.[/p][/quote]humans kill a lot more than any dog - put down all humans, make them walk on a lead - well, the ones in burnley....anyhow. hasslem hasslem

4:16pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Davelyn says...

pete13 wrote:
No dog can be trusted !
By the sound of this statement pal your the one that's BARKING.
[quote][p][bold]pete13[/bold] wrote: No dog can be trusted ![/p][/quote]By the sound of this statement pal your the one that's BARKING. Davelyn

4:47pm Mon 2 Dec 13

mavrick says...

There needs to be a complete review on the way people are allowed to keep a dog. they should be muzzled in public at all times. owners need to pass an education course on the animals welfare, training, etc. All stray dogs should be put down. Dog breeders need to be licensed and vetted. unlicensed breeders jailed for at least 5 years. I am afraid facts have to be faced. Dogs are not to be trusted along with many owners.
There needs to be a complete review on the way people are allowed to keep a dog. they should be muzzled in public at all times. owners need to pass an education course on the animals welfare, training, etc. All stray dogs should be put down. Dog breeders need to be licensed and vetted. unlicensed breeders jailed for at least 5 years. I am afraid facts have to be faced. Dogs are not to be trusted along with many owners. mavrick

4:59pm Mon 2 Dec 13

past it says...

like the comment about muzzles, Pete 13 has a valid point how many kids/adults have been killed/hurt by dogs that "it wont bite you". everything is relative, to a small child a small dog is quite big.
like the comment about muzzles, Pete 13 has a valid point how many kids/adults have been killed/hurt by dogs that "it wont bite you". everything is relative, to a small child a small dog is quite big. past it

6:35pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Strawberry71 says...

I'm not a dog owner but I do go for walks in the same area and it annoys me so much. Many a time i've had large dogs running towards me, paying no attention whatsoever to their owners. They should always be on a lead. ALWAYS. There is livestock about. No excuse to be off the lead AT ALL.
I'm not a dog owner but I do go for walks in the same area and it annoys me so much. Many a time i've had large dogs running towards me, paying no attention whatsoever to their owners. They should always be on a lead. ALWAYS. There is livestock about. No excuse to be off the lead AT ALL. Strawberry71

6:49pm Mon 2 Dec 13

happycyclist says...

Elsie C wrote:
I know this lady & gent were shocked by what happened to them, but I think they still should have got the owners details and taken a photo of the dogs if possible & then followed it up and insisted the dogs be put down. It is appalling that this happens, the offending dogs should be put down regardless of excuses by the owners and the owners should be heavily fined and be made to pay compensation.
It's the owners who should be put down.
[quote][p][bold]Elsie C[/bold] wrote: I know this lady & gent were shocked by what happened to them, but I think they still should have got the owners details and taken a photo of the dogs if possible & then followed it up and insisted the dogs be put down. It is appalling that this happens, the offending dogs should be put down regardless of excuses by the owners and the owners should be heavily fined and be made to pay compensation.[/p][/quote]It's the owners who should be put down. happycyclist

8:50pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Graham Hartley says...

pete13 wrote:
No dog can be trusted !
Further, no human can be trusted. If we grant the influence of Jesus on humans, is there not dog-Jesus with influence on dogs? Let us call Him (He will be male) Dogus, He to whom dogs can look for guidance in their sinful lives.
[quote][p][bold]pete13[/bold] wrote: No dog can be trusted ![/p][/quote]Further, no human can be trusted. If we grant the influence of Jesus on humans, is there not dog-Jesus with influence on dogs? Let us call Him (He will be male) Dogus, He to whom dogs can look for guidance in their sinful lives. Graham Hartley

9:16pm Mon 2 Dec 13

Graham Hartley says...

"Couple attacked by dogs on Pendle Hill walk"

Wasn't it a trio?
"Couple attacked by dogs on Pendle Hill walk" Wasn't it a trio? Graham Hartley

9:37pm Mon 2 Dec 13

pocketdragon says...

Elsie C wrote:
I know this lady & gent were shocked by what happened to them, but I think they still should have got the owners details and taken a photo of the dogs if possible & then followed it up and insisted the dogs be put down. It is appalling that this happens, the offending dogs should be put down regardless of excuses by the owners and the owners should be heavily fined and be made to pay compensation.
yeah because this will stop it from happening wont it...bet your the same sort of do-gooder who pleads all human scum have rights and are misunderstood too.
maybe you should apply such stringent force to the criminals wandering in and out of our courts daily with only slap on the wrist punishments for terrible actual deliberate and intentional crimes.
also i should point out that LET exaggerate these stories heavily and the most probable truth is that the lady panicked and lifted the tiddly dog up in the air and the boxers (if thats even what they were) jumped up. people tend to panick near large dogs which probably had the aftereffect of 'flashbacks'. honestly i really dont think that joe public has any common sense regarding dogs which is sad really when alls said and done its the dogs that get the bad press alongside otherwise responsible owners...
[quote][p][bold]Elsie C[/bold] wrote: I know this lady & gent were shocked by what happened to them, but I think they still should have got the owners details and taken a photo of the dogs if possible & then followed it up and insisted the dogs be put down. It is appalling that this happens, the offending dogs should be put down regardless of excuses by the owners and the owners should be heavily fined and be made to pay compensation.[/p][/quote]yeah because this will stop it from happening wont it...bet your the same sort of do-gooder who pleads all human scum have rights and are misunderstood too. maybe you should apply such stringent force to the criminals wandering in and out of our courts daily with only slap on the wrist punishments for terrible actual deliberate and intentional crimes. also i should point out that LET exaggerate these stories heavily and the most probable truth is that the lady panicked and lifted the tiddly dog up in the air and the boxers (if thats even what they were) jumped up. people tend to panick near large dogs which probably had the aftereffect of 'flashbacks'. honestly i really dont think that joe public has any common sense regarding dogs which is sad really when alls said and done its the dogs that get the bad press alongside otherwise responsible owners... pocketdragon

9:20am Tue 3 Dec 13

AnthonyUK says...

What you all say is rubbish, I have stroked many friendly dogs that haven't showed aggression anger or ferociousness and are thus quite happy to be petted stroked and adored;some will stand it all day long with showing any untoward behaviour. It is the way dogs are treated by their owners and/or trained that has a bearing on the way they behave toward other people and children;dogs do not just turn on other people without a reason, often if a dog is badly treated hurt provoked wound up etc by their previous owners and when they are passed onto new owners, sometimes those traits remain and whatever they do is sometimes passed onto other people be it growling barking snapping biting etc.
What you all say is rubbish, I have stroked many friendly dogs that haven't showed aggression anger or ferociousness and are thus quite happy to be petted stroked and adored;some will stand it all day long with showing any untoward behaviour. It is the way dogs are treated by their owners and/or trained that has a bearing on the way they behave toward other people and children;dogs do not just turn on other people without a reason, often if a dog is badly treated hurt provoked wound up etc by their previous owners and when they are passed onto new owners, sometimes those traits remain and whatever they do is sometimes passed onto other people be it growling barking snapping biting etc. AnthonyUK

3:36pm Tue 3 Dec 13

She Who Sees says...

I'd REALLY like to see a photograph of these two 'Boxers'. This does NOT sound like an attack from Boxers; sounds more like American Bulldogs to me. Owners and handlers of Boxers need to start getting angry about this kind of nonsense - amazing how many people no longer recognise a Boxer anymore. In America, they even try and disguise PIT BULLS and PIT BULL MIXES as 'Boxers'. Please don't tell me that the UK is following this nasty little trend? Some follow-ups to this story would be in order, along with a statement from the Police CONFIRMING THAT THOSE DOGS WERE FULL-BLOOD BOXER DOGS. A prosecution is in order here; these kinds of stories are on the rise.
I'd REALLY like to see a photograph of these two 'Boxers'. This does NOT sound like an attack from Boxers; sounds more like American Bulldogs to me. Owners and handlers of Boxers need to start getting angry about this kind of nonsense - amazing how many people no longer recognise a Boxer anymore. In America, they even try and disguise PIT BULLS and PIT BULL MIXES as 'Boxers'. Please don't tell me that the UK is following this nasty little trend? Some follow-ups to this story would be in order, along with a statement from the Police CONFIRMING THAT THOSE DOGS WERE FULL-BLOOD BOXER DOGS. A prosecution is in order here; these kinds of stories are on the rise. She Who Sees

12:17pm Sun 22 Dec 13

Dreamdestroyer says...

The owner should be charged with grievous bodily harm and jailed and his dogs destroyed.
The owner should be charged with grievous bodily harm and jailed and his dogs destroyed. Dreamdestroyer

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