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Dog attacking cygnet at local nature reserve - wwyd?

(5 Posts)
CocktailQueen Mon 15-Dec-14 22:07:27

Went out for early walk on Saturday morning. With the dc. We were feeding the ducks and swans, out of the water, when a collie came racing towards the dc and the swans. Owner hundreds of yards behind it. The dog bit the cygnet and had a mouthful of feathers - swans panicked and flew towards water. Dc had to avoid swans panicking.

Dh and I approached dog owner woman and told her what had happened - both dc were in tears and very upset over injured cygnet. Dog owner v sorry but said, oh, collie usually chase birds but never attacks them - what a stupid women! The birds don't want to be attacked either! It's their home! Keep the ruddy dog on a lead unless it has recall...

Aibu? I really want to do something to stop this happening again. But what? Write to paper? Contact the council? Get them to put dogs on a lead round the whole lake ? Every single time we go the there are out of control dogs being a pita - and this is the last straw. Now dc don't want to go back there!

Buttholelane Mon 15-Dec-14 22:38:12

To be fair to the woman, the dog probably hasn't attacked before, I would imagine that she was as shocked as you.
My collie loves chasing birds too and has never shown any intention of harming them, she has gotten close enough to bring them down on many occasions but just runs past.
That said, I can imagine how upsetting it must have been, I would have been pretty traumatised if my dog did that.

I would contact the council and ask them to request that dogs are kept on lead around the lake to avoid disturbing the wildlife and explain how upset your kids are and that the cygnet has probably died as a result of what happened.
If it's an area where children are constantly present they shouldn't really be off lead imo.
Unfortunately I would imagine plenty will ignore it even if the council do insist.

It's horrible when out of control dogs spoil it for everyone else sad

CocktailQueen Mon 15-Dec-14 23:04:25

Thanks, butthole (!). She said the dog hadn't attacked before - but she was so far behind it that she was completely out of control. It could have attacked the dc. And she shouldn't be letting it round up the birds ffs. But the place is full of dog owners letting their mutts run off the lead and not in control of them. Piles of dog crap everywhere. Spoils it for everyone else.

Buttholelane Mon 15-Dec-14 23:19:12

Well, if she was as far behind as you say then legally, the dog was 'out of control in a public place', although without her address you can't really do anything about it.
My dog is off lead 99.9% but she is always in my eyeline and has excellent recall.

The dog probably would not have attacked your child, predatory aggression and human aggression are worlds apart.
Most dogs, if too engaged in chase, will kill small animals unfortunately.
Same as cats, but no one would expect a cat that kills mice to then attack a child.

I do feel for you though, it sounds like a really traumatic experience and badly behaved dogs that go bouncing up bothering everyone and shitting everywhere makes me really cross.
It makes all dog owners look bad, then we get banned and have nowhere to enjoy days out with our kids and pets.
Minority ruining it for the majority.

CocktailQueen Tue 16-Dec-14 11:29:31

Yup, you're right, butthole. Seems to be a pretty big minority here, though sad

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