'I cried like a newborn baby as I dug up my chihuahua'
Gardaí investigating the decapitation of a pet chihuahua are to carry out forensic tests on the dog's remains.
Kieran Keogh, from Rathdrum, Co Wicklow, yesterday handed over the remains of his slain dog 'Mousey', who he says was kidnapped and beheaded last week.
Gardaí are investigating the beheading claim, which has sent shockwaves throughout the local community.
Members of the Garda crime scene unit carried out an extensive examination at the garden of the house at Brewery Bends in Rathdrum yesterday.
Officers removed the dog's corpse for a full forensic analysis.
Gardaí are understood to have given Mr Keogh the option of removing the dog's remains himself from a homemade grave in his garden in Rathdrum.
If he had declined, they would have formally done so themselves.
Mr Keogh said that having buried his pet, he felt that he was the person best placed to remove the remains for a Garda analysis.
Officers leading the investigation into the alleged decapitation have interviewed both Mr Keogh (42) and his partner Andy Price.
Speaking last night, Mr Keogh said he became deeply emotional and "cried like a newborn baby" after digging up his beloved pet.
But he added: "It shows the people out there who are doubting me that I'm telling the truth."
Mr Keogh said some people in the local community had suggested that he was somehow responsible for the death of his dog, which he has owned for three years.
"For anyone to think I would do something so sick makes me so angry," he said.
Mr Keogh has already reported an incident to officers in which he said he was harassed by a local person while out shopping.
He said the person accused him of killing the dog himself - a claim that he rejects outright.
Gardaí are due to return to the couple's home today in order to retrieve the dog's head, which is sitting close to the property.
Mr Keogh said he had no idea why anyone would target him or his partner by beheading the dog.
"I have no grievance with anybody in the area," he said.
Having made the horrific discovery last week, Mr Keogh began searching his neighbourhood frantically for the dog's head.
When he returned home, he discovered Mousey's head had been left on the back doorstep.
"I put the backyard light on and there he was with his little tongue sticking out and eyes looking up at me," he added.
"I've never been so sick in my life. He had only just turned three."
Sources last night said the remains of the dog will now be sent to the veterinary section within An Garda Síochána for examination.
The same sources said they are continuing to investigate a number of lines of a inquiry. Future arrests are not being ruled out.
Gardaí have asked anyone who may have seen any suspicious activity to call Wicklow garda station on (0404) 67107.