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Pensioner urges fellow dog walkers to keep them on leads if unsure of their behaviour after he and his pet attacked at New Milton's Ballard Water Meadow



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A RETIRED police officer from Hordle pensioner is urging fellow dog walkers to be more alert with their leads after he and his pet were attacked in New Milton.

Michael Charron (79), of Charnock Close, was clawed and needed two tetanus boosters, and his seven-year-old shih tzu, Harry, suffered puncture wounds to his belly when he was set upon by a bulldog at Ballard Water Meadow in New Milton.

The incident took place as Mr Charron (79), of Charnock Close, walked his rescue dog between 11am and 11.30am last Monday.

Michael Charron was left needing two booster shots after his arm was clawed by the attacking dog
Michael Charron was left needing two booster shots after his arm was clawed by the attacking dog

“It was quite a frightening experience,” he told the A&T. “I was halfway along the wooded area when I saw a lady with three dogs, two of which were bulldogs and the third could have been a pointer. All of the dogs were off their leads.

“When Harry saw the three dogs he wanted to investigate, so he went up to have a bit of a sniff.”

At this point, Mr Charron recalled, the two bull dogs surrounded Harry, prompting him to intervene.

But when he pulled one of them away, the other started attacking Harry.

Mr Charron was clawed, suffering a badly bruised arm, as he and the woman tried to move the dog away. The woman, who he thought to be in her 50s, was also hurt.

“Everything happened so quick,” he continued. “The bulldog had rolled Harry over in the struggle and left puncture marks to his belly.

“The lady was very sympathetic and didn’t try to run off.

“She said, 'I’m getting rid of the dog because look at this'. She showed me her hand and it was pouring with blood.”

Mr Charron carried Harry back to the car and drove him to a vet who put him on antibiotics and painkillers.

Shih tzu Harry suffered puncture wounds
Shih tzu Harry suffered puncture wounds

By the Wednesday, Harry was doing much better having been subdued since the attack.

Mr Charron’s arm injury was dressed at New Milton Health Centre, and he was given a tetanus booster, with another to follow a month later.

He is calling on all dog walkers to keep their pets on leads if unsure how they might react to other animals and people.

“The majority of dog owners are pretty well educated, but if they are in any doubt, they’ve got to be more cautious,” he said.

“Harry is such a lovely little thing. He wouldn’t harm anybody, although he makes a lot of noise.

“I shall now be very wary and shall certainly keep him on a lead more.”

The attack was reported to New Forest District Council, which notified the area’s dog warden.

An NFDC spokesperson said: “We are sorry to hear of this incident, which we have received a report for.

“We are currently working with the police to follow up this report and ask residents to contact us on 023 8028 5000 if they have any information about the incident which may help our investigation.”



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