23rd September 2018
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Sheriff orders destruction of dog that mauled cat at Fort Charlotte

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A sheriff has ordered a dangerous dog which mauled a cat to be destroyed and banned its owner from keeping dogs for five years.

Chantelle Mockford, 20, of Gremmasgaet in Lerwick, struggled in vain to prevent her Hines American bulldog/Staffordshire bull terrier cross from killing the pet at Fort Charlotte on 15th April.

The dog was off the lead when it spied the cat before chasing it and mauling it to death.

The cat’s owner came out, and Mockford, who was heavily pregnant at the time, put herself in harm’s way to get the dog off the cat.

At Lerwick Sheriff Court today Mockford admitted contravening the Dangerous Dogs Act.

Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said the incident could have been avoided if the dog had been on a lead.

He said the cat was a “minor celebrity”, having proved very popular with residents in the area.

Defence agent Gregor Kelly said Mockford had extended her sympathies to the cat owner.

He said the dog, Missie, had been in Mockford’s care since it was a puppy.

Mr Kelly said the dog had not acted dangerously before the incident. However Mockford now had a five-month-old daughter and was eager to see the animal re-homed.

He said there was a potential owner in Aberdeen, and that there had been many enquiries from people looking to take Missie on.

“I’d ask you to give her some credit. The dog hasn’t shown this propensity before.”

He said a veterinary surgeon had said the cat was in good physical condition and was friendly and welcoming.

However Sheriff Graeme Napier said: “I can’t think of any reason why I shouldn’t just order the destruction of the dog. The dog’s already mauled a cat.”

He told her: “I think justice will be done if the dog is destroyed, and if you are disqualified from keeping any dog for five years.”

Meanwhile, a woman is facing trial after being charged with allowing a Staffordshire bull terrier to attack and injure another dog.

Samantha Chapman, 26, of Sundhamar in Lerwick, denies committing the offence on 7th June at Grodians.

Trial was set for 15th December, with an intermediate diet on 30th November.

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