A Derry pensioner whose beloved pet dog was mauled to death by a bigger dog last April has slammed the authorities after discovering the case went to court without his knowledge.
“A complete farce” is how Eddie Harkin describes the situation following the death of his pet dog, Odie, in Collon Lane last year.
The 75 year-old from Belmont remains angry that neither the NI Courts Service nor Derry City Council informed him of the case coming to court so he could be present.
“The court case went ahead and nobody told me,” Mr Harkin told the ‘SUNDAY’. “Why wasn’t I informed? I would have been there, but I only found out it had been to court when I got a letter saying I was awarded £250 compensation.”
Mr Harkin says of the compensation offer: “Putting a price on my dog is an insult to him and to me. There was never any apology or any explanation. His dog ripped mine apart and left him to die,” he claimed.
“I’m 75 years-old and living on my own. I couldn’t sleep for a long time after this happened thinking about my poor wee dog yelping and screaming and I couldn’t help him.”
A Derry City Council spokesperson confirmed that dog attack cases once reported are investigated by council dog wardens and when necessary the owner, or responsible person in charge of the dog, is prosecuted under the Dog (NI) Order 1983 as amended.
Once these cases have been brought before the court system it would be normal practice to report the case through the Environmental Service Committee meeting in Council. The aggrieved person would be informed by Council prior to this. “The dog owner, whose dog was attacked and killed, has now been contacted and advised of this report.”