Witnesses sought after an horrific attack on poodle

A HORRIFIED dog owner is calling for witnesses to come forward after her pet was attacked in a busy town centre.

Brenda Johnstone from Hailsham was in Eastbourne on Friday when her poodle was set upon by what she believes was a Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

Brenda and her husband were waiting to get a bus back home and Mrs Johnstone was sitting on a bench near Natwest when they saw two men walking in their direction with two dogs on their leads.

Mrs Johnstone says she was helped by passers by following the incident but the two men walked off after the attack.

Her four-year-old poodle had to have stitches inside and outside his mouth and is now recovering after being taken to the vets.

She said, “I said to my husband about the dogs and he said, ‘don’t panic, we’re all right’.

“Before I could say any more the next moment I know one of these dogs had got our poodle and dragged it towards the back wall. I was screaming, I was hysterical.

“My husband banged it on the nose a few times.”

Despite being traumatised by the event the 69-year-old is grateful to a number of people who stopped and helped, especially a taxi driver who got her into his car to calm down. Mrs Johnstone is now keen to trace the owners of the two dogs and believes they should have had the dogs muzzled.

She added, “These chaps never said to my husband ‘we’re sorry’.

“The injustice of it is these chaps just walked away – suppose it had been a child? Before they turned up, there were little children there chasing the birds.”

The incident happened around 3.45pm on Friday and Mrs Johnstone said both men were topless at the time of the incident.

Julie Hickling, pollution manager at Eastbourne Borough Council, said, “Working with Sussex Police, we are currently making enquiries into the incident on Friday afternoon.

“We are speaking to witnesses, including Brenda Johnstone, and reviewing CCTV footage in order to ascertain what happened and the identity of those involved.

“It is clear that two dogs, very similar in type to the Staffordshire Bull Terrier breed, were being led through the town centre at approximately 3.30pm by two males.

“We are very keen to speak to these gentlemen.”

A spokesperson for Sussex Police said the matter was being investigated and the dog warden for the area had also been notified.