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Burnley man's beloved Yorkshire Terrier mauled to death by ‘pitbull’
A PENSIONER watched in horror as he saw his tiny dog was savaged and killed by a pitbull cross-breed in a Burnley park.
The town’s magistrates were told how 67-year-old Robert Standen was left bereft by the loss of his ‘constant and only companion’, Tiger, who he had owned for 12 years.
The Yorkshire Terrier, which weighed less than five pounds, was subjected to the awful onslaught as Mr Standen walked him on his lead in Rakehead Park.
The hearing heard the large pit bull terrier cross-type dog, which a year earlier had attacked a man during a violent assault, was being looked after by Kevin Mason as its owner, Leigh Fullard, was in jail.
The attack only ended when a passer-by kicked the animal and it released the dog from its grip.
Fullard, 26, of Leyland Road, Burnley, was last month locked up for five years and four months after he goaded the vicious animal to attack a man and assaulted the victim at the same time.
Burnley Crown Court had been told how the dog sunk its teeth into Ricardo Robinson's thigh and arm in April last year.
Mr Robinson suffered a deep bite wound to his left elbow, leaving underlying muscles visible.
Fullard pleaded guilty to owning a dog dangerously out of control in a public place and wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
After the attack the dog was destroyed.
Speaking at his home on Hawes Terrace, just yards from the park where the attack took place, Mr Standen said that he was angered that the dog had not already been destroyed.
“It should have been put to sleep after the first attack,” he said.
“The animal was obviously a danger. What if it had been a toddler playing on that park?
“I live alone, have never married and little Tiger was my only company. He was no trouble and to see him so violently killed really affected me.”
Mr Standon has since bought another dog, another Yorkshire Terrier, which he has also named Tiger in tribute to his dead pet.
Jobless Mason, of Hobart Street, Burnley, admitted being in charge of a dog dangerously out of control in a public place on May 3.
He was given a conditional discharge for six months and must pay £450 compensation to Mr Standen.
Julie Reddish,prosecuting, said when the attack was stopped, Mr Standen picked up his pet and thought it was still breathing.
The Yorkshire Terrier was rushed to a nearby vet, but had died.
David Lawson, for Mason, said he was looking after the Fullard’s dog for three or four weeks.
He was walking the animal, which had not had any exercise for a significant period of time and took it to Rakehead Park.
The defendant let it off its lead for a run.
Once it started to attack the Yorkshire Terrier he ran across the field to try and help.
The defendant stayed at the scene and spoke to the Mr Standen.
Mr Lawson continued: "He is extremely remorseful. He recognises the upset that it would cause the elderly gentleman, losing his dog and his only companion."