Northern Ireland

Dog acid attack 'worst case of animal cruelty', says vet

Liam Fitzsimons
Image caption Liam Fitzsimons says the attack was worst case of animal cruelty he has seen in 30 years

A Newry vet who had to put a dog down after it was attacked with acid has said it is the "worst case of animal cruelty" he has come across.

Liam Fitzsimons, of Newry Veterinary Centre, received the dog at his clinic on Tuesday.

Police were called at around 18:10 BST to the Pound Road area after a woman found the animal covered in burns.

They said that the dog was later put down due to the "severity of its injuries."

Police said on Wednesday that an investigation has been launched.

Warning: distressing image below

Image caption The dog was euthanised in Newry Veterinary Centre after it was discovered by a local woman

Mr Fitzsimons told BBC News NI that "there was only one option" when the dog arrived at his centre, and he decided to put the dog down.

"You could smell the burning off the animal and the skin was falling away," he added.

"The dog's tongue was ulcerated as it was licking the acid off of its skin.

"In thirty years of practice, I have never seen anything like this. This is the worst case of animal cruelty I have ever come across."

The Newry vet said that the sight of the animal brought a veterinary nurse to tears.

"I will take this case to my grave," he said.

"There is a monster on the loose in Newry. If they can do this to a dog, they can do it to a human."

Image copyright Liam Fitzsimons
Image caption Mr Fitzsimons says he believes the dog was attacked with acid

David Wilson, spokesperson for the USPCA in Newry, told BBC News NI that the dog is believed to be a family pet.

"This was a horrendous attack on a Staffordshire terrier with a corrosive substance," Mr Wilson said.

He has called on the local community to help the police with their investigation, and to reveal any information they may have.

Local councillor, Gavin Malone, visited the woman who found the dog and said she was "devastated".

"There has been ongoing problems in the area with anti-social behaviour," he said.

" I don't think there was a vindictive motive. I think it was down to sheer badness."

Related Topics