SEVERAL families watched in horror as marauding dogs tore a pet Jack Russell apart in a quiet housing estate.
Two mothers bravely went to the aid of the pet, Bella, and the mongrels then turned on them outside the village of Cloyne in east Cork.
Gardai are now trying to trace the two dogs, both of whom had collars, amid fears they could attack children in the village.
The two mothers, Liz Gough and Ali O’Leary, had to use broom handles and pans of water to get the badly-injured Jack Russell away from the two Lurcher-type dogs and then run to the safety of a nearby house.
Tragically, despite rushing Bella to a local vet the little dog later died from her injuries.
Bella, owned for seven years by Jesse Lee, died from multiple internal injuries as well as severe brain damage.
Liz and her neighbour, Ali, were alerted to the attack after hearing the Jack Russell’s howls of pain.
“She was being pulled apart by two mongrel type dogs, one with its mouth around her throat and the other with a grip on her flank. There was blood everywhere and she was being ripped apart,” Liz said.
“I had grabbed a brush from my house and I beat the dog at the back with it. One left go for a few seconds but the other kept tugging at Bella's throat.”
Ali rang a local vet and he advised throwing cold water on the two attacking dogs.
“When Ali did that they let go of Bella and she grabbed her. We ran into Ali’s house with the two vicious dogs chasing us and locked the door. They stayed there yelping and trying to get in. Bella was in bits and covered in blood.”
“Ali bravely ran to her car and got in as we knew we had to get Bella to the vet. The two dogs were viciously trying to get into the car and chased it as she drove out of the estate.”
The attack happened at lunchtime last Monday at the Cois na Crainn estate which is just 200m from the village.
While no children witnessed the brutal attack, both Liz and Ali are terrified as to what the marauding dogs might do to any youngsters they come across.
Locals reported that a family attending a local playground also had their pet dog attacked by two larger dogs over recent days.
“These two dogs, one of them I think had pit bull breeding in him and the smaller one looked as if he was part-Lurcher, would attack a child as quickly and as easily as they attacked Bella.”
Gardai and the ISPCA have appealed for the owner of the dogs or anyone who knows where they are kept to contact them.
“These dogs were absolutely vicious and I have no doubt they will attack anything that crosses their path,” Liz added.