Police, responding to a "domestic" incident, had been attacked by a Staffordshire bull terrier as they walked up the path to the house.A terrifying thing to happen, and it could have been much worse…
The dog went for the policewoman, biting her stomach and arm.
One of her colleagues drove off the dog with an incapacitating spray and the dog was cornered in the house in Newcastle Gardens.Whew! Dog secured, all’s well (or at least as well as it could be), owner in a whole heap of trouble when she returns, job done, right?
Colin Northcott, head keeper of Dartmoor Zoo at Sparkwell, was called to a house in Whitleigh.Wait, what..?
Mr Northcott said: "When I got there, the dog was in a pretty ferocious state.Well, hardly surprising, given that you are now in its territory and antagonising it!
"A vet provided the necessary drugs and I went into the house with the police."
He said members of the police dogs team, wearing "bite" suits, helmets with full visors and carrying riot shields, had the dog cornered in the kitchen.
The dog was snarling and jumping up, trying to attack the police officers.
What’s wrong with simply ensuring the door (or pet door) is securely closed and waiting until the owner gets back or is found?
The dog has been seized by police and will be assessed to establish whether it is a banned breed.Shouldn’t have any trouble, given the initial act was unprovoked.
Police were considering an application for a destruction order of the dog.
Officers were visiting the Whitleigh house after reports of a disturbance in the street at about noon on Monday.Now here’s where sloppy reporting comes in – do they mean the initial domestic (in which case, good response times there!) or this incident, which seems to have taken up an extraordinary amount of police time and resources?
Neighbours said the incident lasted about five hours.
Kayleigh Meara, 21, who lives in Newcastle Gardens, said: "I left home at about noon and that's when I first saw one police car and a riot van speeding up Shrewsbury Avenue.Well, that’s helpful. Good time to be a burglar in Plymouth…
"I came back at about 3.30pm and there were two riot vans and three police cars and most of the police were standing around in the street."
Police first called in the RSPCA to deal with the dog.Translation: ‘We didn’t fancy getting our nuts chewed off – unless there was a guaranteed TV appearance in it!’.
An RSPCA spokesman said: "We didn't have anybody on duty with the relevant equipment or training."
A 33-year-old local woman was arrested on suspicion of having a dog dangerously out of control in a public place. She was later released on police bail until September 16.Can’t wait to find out what the real story behind this was…