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Byline: GARETH HUGHES Daily Post Correspondent

A COURT has ordered that two alsatians that savaged a Jack Russell which later died must be put down.

After hearing that the dogs, Rocky and Max, had been involved in two previous incidents, magistrates in Llandudno ruled that they were a danger to public safety.

At a hearing in June, Heather Cairns was found guilty on two charges of being the owner of the dogs which were dangerously out of control in Bishopswood Road, Prestatyn, on February 5. The court heard that the alsatians attacked Gabrielle Waring's seven-year-old Jack Russell, Herbie, after running out of the driveway of Cairns's home when she opened the electronic gates as she approached.

Miss Waring, a former police officer, was knocked to the ground and tried to fend the dogs off as she struggled to protect Herbie.

Cairns, now of Canterbury Drive, Prestatyn, kicked the dogs which eventually ran back up the drive, but Herbie was badly injured. He was taken to a local vet and then to a specialist vet in Chester for surgery, and though his condition seemed to improve he then died.

Cairns told the court that the alsatians were owned by her partner Tony Thackeray and she not only had nothing to do with them but did not even like dogs.

She said they were usually kept in an enclosed upper tier of the garden and she had no reason to suspect they were on the drive when she approached.

Yesterday Miss Waring read a victim impact statement in which she said she had always been confident and had a zest for life but the incident had left her nervous and wary of dogs.

"I now hate that breed of dog with a passion," she said.

She described how she sometimes woke up in a cold sweat reliving her struggle to protect Herbie.

"It was the worst day of my life," she said.

Prosecutor Julia Galston read statements relating to two earlier incidents, one in 2014 and the other in 2015, in which the alsatians had bitten dogs.

On the first occasion Herbie was again the victim after he had entered the driveway of Cairns's home. Miss Waring and a friend managed to rescue Herbie, who was covered in blood. On the second occasion, Barry Jones was walking his sheepdog along Bishopswood Road when Max and Rocky ran out and attacked his dog. Mr Thackeray dragged his dogs off and kicked them.

"It was upsetting to watch and I felt helpless," said Mr Jones.

Rosalind Emsley-Smith, defending, said that Cairns had done her best in the situation and had expressed genuine remorse for what had happened.

Mr Thackeray, she explained, had paid the PS5,500 bill for the specialist vet.

Cairns was fined PS180 and ordered to pay costs of PS800, a surcharge of PS20 and the Prestatyn vet's fees of PS534.

She must also pay Miss Waring PS650 for the distress caused and the vet's fee of PS130 for destruction of the two dogs.

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Publication:Daily Post (Conwy, Wales)
Date:Aug 20, 2016
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