Warning: Graphic image
A Levin teenager was left with a hefty veterinarian bill after her dog was attacked during a routine afternoon walk.
Alyssa Jensen, 18, was out walking Pumba with a friend and her dog a few weeks ago when another large dog broke through a fence and attacked.
She said the large dog latched on to Pumba's ear, while she did her best to prize the two dogs apart. But whenever she managed to subdue her own dog, who was wearing a harness, the attacking dog was free to come back for more.
This went on for 10 terrifying minutes.
"I was trying hard to pull them apart and it nearly bit my face. It was real scary. My friend was crying. She was petrified," she said.
Alyssa said Pumba, aged 3, was a "good dog". Her friend's dog was a little dog and wouldn't have stood much chance if Pumba hadn't stepped in the way.
"He's a gentle giant. He was only trying to protect us."
Alyssa had to take Pumba to the vet to fix wounds sustained in the attack. The bill for ongoing vet visits had so far come to $719. She believed the attacking dog was also taken to the vet for treatment.
Pumba was neutered at a young age and routinely registered at Horowhenua District Council.
Alyssa said she had sought advice from HDC and informed them of the attack. She said she was told that the owner of the offending dog had now been instructed to ensure his fence was escape-proof.
But the incident had left her out of pocket and her only recourse was to now seek legal advice.
In the meantime, Alyssa was determined not to let the ordeal prevent her or her friend from exercising their dogs.
"We've been taking a different route," she said.