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Rossendale blind woman's terror as guide dog attacked
A BLIND woman whose guide dog was attacked as she walked through a field has enlisted the help of her MP to clamp down on dangerous dogs.
Jenny Nedwell’s Labrador retriever, Riley, was set upon by a larger dog on a path near Rossendale General Hospital.
She has met with Rossendale MP Jake Berry, who has pledged to back her campaign to have attacks on guide dogs treated as seriously as attacks on people.
Miss Nedwell, from Rawtenstall, said this incident was not the first time one of her guide dogs had been attacked.
Her previous guide dog, Holly, a yellow Labrador, was also attac-ked and had to retire after suffering puncture wounds to her head.
She said: “It is incredibly frightening when another dog attacks your guide dog. As a visually-impaired person, I am already vulnerable and completely rely on my dog to support me to get around.
“I am unable to see what is happening to my dog and the sound of the attack is terrifying to hear, and leaves you shaken up and nervous when working your guide dog near other dogs in the community.”
Miss Nedwell, 29, a trainer at the Bootstrap social enterprise, suffers from reverse retinitis pigmentosa, meaning she has no central vision, and severely limited peripheral vision.
She said that although Riley did not suffer physical injury after the attack, in January, the fear of a future attack had been detrimental to his guide dog work, and her own safety. The incident has been reported to the dog warden at Rossendale Council.
Miss Nedwell was accompanied on her visit to Mr Berry’s office by Emma Allen-Taylor, an engagement officer for the Manchester Mobility Team and The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association.
Mr Berry said: “The issue of dangerous dogs is a growing problem in many communities, and when attacks occur on guide dogs this is even more distressing.
“Guide dogs are vital to enable people who are blind to live full, and independent, lives and I am very happy to raise this issue in Parliament on behalf of my constituents.”