A dog owner whose puppy was killed by a larger dog has spent lockdown fighting for safe spaces for small dogs in Croydon’s parks.
Lisa Bunclark, 31, took up the cause after her 11-week-old jackapoo, Ebony, was killed in a Thornton Heath park last June.
Ebony, who was as small as a size five shoe, was being taught recall and other basic training by Miss Bunclark when the attack occurred.
According to the campaign, a suspected Rottweiler was let off its lead and it then charged unprovoked at Ebony, killing her instantly.
Miss Bunclark also sustained injuries as she tried to stop the dog.
It is alleged the suspected owner put up a sign outside his house following the attack with the words: ‘Our dogs are not vegetarians’.
Miss Bunclark said: “In all the chaos and uncertainty of the pandemic, Ebony made it really exciting and took my mind away from it all.
“The most heartbreaking thing was it was just three weeks I had with her, that was it.”
After the attack, the owner put the dog back on its lead and promptly left the park, leaving Miss Bunclark alone and distraught with Ebony’s lifeless body.
The campaign was started after failed attempts for justice for Ebony through the legal system.
She has worked with police, her MP and dog wardens in the hope of stopping anyone else having to endure the same experience.
“The most frustrating part is there is so little you can do,” Miss Bunclark added.
“His dogs are still out there, but Ebony has been taken away from me.”
A Croydon council spokesperson said: “As a council, we actively prioritise and promote responsible dog ownership to ensure the safety of dogs, their owners and members of the public in our parks.
“We will be looking at holding a dog awareness event in partnership with the police in the Thornton Heath area later this year in the hope of improving dog safety in the area.”
Miss Bunclark now has a new dog Maya, a 12-month-old jackapoo, who has helped her work through the trauma of what happened to Ebony.
She said: “With Maya I was so terrified that history could repeat itself but she’s learning her way and I have to trust that she’ll be able to handle herself – she has completely changed my life and my priorities.”
The pair will be moving to Bath in the coming months so they can spend more time outdoors with Maya able to enjoy the freedom of the countryside.
To join Lisa’s fight, sign the petition.
Photo credit: Lisa Bunclark.