Petition saves dog that bit child on the leg
- Credit: Archant
A DOG which was handed a death sentence for biting a child has been saved after hundreds of people signed a petition to spare him.
David Evans, of Clevedon Road, Weston, said he was ‘devastated’ when he found out his Staffordshire bull terrier Tyson could be put down.
The possibility arose after the dog bit an 11-year-old boy on the leg while the youngster was out shopping in Weston with his father on June 1.
Tyson and his owner were outside The Kameleon pub in Oxford Street when the youth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, rode past on his scooter.
The boy was taken to hospital after his father saw the dog run away and blood coming through his son’s jeans.
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The bite had caused a wound two to three inches long and half an inch wide and the child had to use crutches for three days.
Mr Evans appeared at North Somerset Courthouse in St Georges on Monday and admitted to allowing the dog to be dangerously out of control in a public place and causing injury.
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Mr Evans, aged 53, said everyone in the town knows him and his dog as a ‘double act’ and Tyson had not bitten anyone before.
He said: “I was devastated when I was told he could be put down. I would have lost everything. It would have killed me.
“I have lived in Weston for eight years, and ever since I got him, when he was 18 months old, he has been my companion. He’s my boy.
“I wanted to do everything I could to make sure it would not happen.”
Mr Evans and his friends made it their mission to get the sentence overturned and set up a Facebook page called Save Tyson.
At the court, Mr Evans also presented 32 character references for his nine-year-old dog, who said Tyson was not a threat, and a petition which had been signed by 260 people.
Mr Evans said: “I felt over the moon when he was saved. Tears of joy were rolling down my cheeks.
“But I still feel remorse for what happened.
“It means the world to me that so many people supported us. Everybody knows him and knows he is a friendly dog.
“Any dog can be vicious; it’s all about how you bring them up. Nine times out of 10 it is not down to the dog, it’s the owner.”
Mr Evans was ordered to pay £150 in compensation to the victim, and was made subject to a three-month curfew, from 7pm-7am. He also has to pay £85 in costs, a victim surcharge of £60 and was ordered to ensure Tyson wears a muzzle when outside of his house.