Beloved pet dies after vicious attack in Dagenham by ‘dangerous pit bull’

A family say more must be done to crack down on dangerous dogs, after their beloved Jack Russell was killed by a suspected pit bull.

Laura Darby, 16, was walking little Henry in Pondfield Park in Dagenham last Wednesday when the pooch was savaged by the bigger dog.

Henry was taken to a vet and died from his injuries the following day.

Laura, of Reede Road, Dagenham, said the suspected pit bull, which is a banned breed, was off the lead and darted across the grass in her direction at around 5pm.

“I saw it running towards me and it looked like it was going to attack me, but then Henry – who was on a lead –got in the way and it went for him instead,” she said.

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“It started chewing away at his neck. I was screaming and trying to pull it off but it just kept biting him.”

The Eastbrook School sixth form student described how a passer-by then pulled the dog off Henry.

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The mutt was later seized by police on suspicion of being a pit bull under Section 1 of the Dangerous Dogs Act.

Laura, who lives with her parents and two siblings, said the family were all devastated by the loss of 12-year-old Henry.

“He was one of the nicest dogs you could meet. He would never hurt anyone,” she added.

The family are now calling for more to be done to ensure other pets or people aren’t hurt by dangerous dogs.

Mum Julie said: “Dog owners need to be more responsible, keeping dogs, especially ones that can be violent, on leads and if necessary make sure its wearing a muzzle.

“I also think there needs to be harsher penalties for those whose dogs do injure others.”

Police Sergeant Ian Lee, who leads on investigations into all offences under the Dangerous Dogs Act, is looking into the incident.

Sgt Lee said: “Walking any animal in public is a huge responsibility. In the interests of public safety, animals should always be accompanied by people who have the strength and confidence to control them.”

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